Campus Units

Agronomy

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

2007

Journal or Book Title

Agronomy Journal

Volume

99

Issue

1

First Page

304

Last Page

310

DOI

10.2134/agronj2005.0038s

Abstract

Persistent concern regarding surface energy balance closure encourages increased scrutiny of potential sources of error. Laboratory and field experiments addressed heat flow distortion and thermal contact resistance errors during measurement of soil heat flux (G) using the flux plate technique. Steady-state, one-dimensional heat flow experiments determined flux plate thermal conductivities (λm) and measured the effect of air gaps and thermal heat sink coatings on plate performance. Use of measured instead of manufacturer-specified λm and plate dimensions in a heat flow distortion correction improved the consistency but not the average disagreement between imposed sand G and corrected plate heat flux density (G m). Consistent underestimates of G in dry sand by 20 to 25% after heat flow distortion correction was attributed to thermal contact resistance effects. A convex air gap 0.1 to 1.32 mm thick across 5.9% of the plate face area reduced G m by up to 9.7%. A thin layer of a thermal heat sink compound with λ 0.18 W m−1 K−1 greater than the plate λm (1.0 W m−1 K−1) did not increase G m in a clay soil but increased G m by ∼6% in quartz sand. A 6.5% increase in G mwas also observed for plates treated with the same heat sink compound in a silt loam soil under field conditions. Thermal contact resistance errors are probably G m may occur due to thermal contact resistance in dry sand and due to heat flow distortion when soil λ >> λm.

Comments

This article is published as Sauer, Thomas J., Tyson E. Ochsner, and Robert Horton. "Soil Heat Flux Plates." Agronomy journal 99, no. 1 (2007): 304-310. doi: 10.2134/agronj2005.0038s. Posted with permission.

Rights

Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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