COMPONENTS OF VARIANCE INVOLVED IN ESTIMATING SOIL WATER CONTENT AND WATER CONTENT CHANGE USING A NEUTRON MOISTURE METER

In order to rationalize the allocation of resources in the estimation of soil water content using the neutron moisture meter, it is essential to have a thorough understanding of the sources and magnitudes of the variance components. An error analysis, taking into consideration current technology and methodology, identifies three components of total variance, attributable to: location error due to site heterogeneity with respect to soil water and random error associated with positioning the probe; calibration error; and instrument error. Data from three locations illustrate that the location variance is the major source of random error in the total variance of an individual estimate. For the total variance of the mean over a site containing n sample estimates, the large location component is reduced by a factor of n such that in many circumstances it will reduce to the same order as the calibration component which is independent of n. This is particularly true for field calibration. The instrument error and that error introduced by the use of count rate ratio are small and contribute in a very minor way to the total variance of the mean. The analysis reveals that the nature of the relationship between the magnitude of the location error and the calibration error is dependent on site heterogeneity, the value of n and the precision of the calibration equation (A). (TRRL)

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Org

    314 Albert Street
    East Melbourne, Victoria,   Australia 
  • Authors:
    • Sinclair, D F
    • Williams, J
  • Publication Date: 1979-7

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 237-247
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00330441
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB Group Limited
  • Files: ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: May 21 1981 12:00AM