Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science




Soil Science

First Advisor

Andrew Manu


Homogeneous management of fields is recently being viewed as inefficient due to infield variation of soil properties. Site-specific management is an efficient alternative to the uniform application of inputs. The general aim of site-specific management is to prevent profit-loss and unwanted environmental impacts. For Site-specific management to be successful, the mapping of subfield homogeneous regions, called soil management zones (SMZ), is required. Remote sensing has been used to identify infield variance, but has been unsuccessful due to sub-par image resolution. However, more recently low altitude remote sensing applications have become available, such as unmanned aerial systems (UAS) that offer ultra-fine resolution. The global objective of this study is to use UAS technology to identify, map, and characterize SMZ for the purposes of site-specific management in tropical agroecosystems. This study was conducted in the Northern and Upper East Region of Ghana in support of the Feed the Future Ghana Agriculture Technology Transfer project. Georeferenced normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data was sequentially collected throughout the growing season to be used to delineate SMZ. The characterization of SMZ was verified through analysis of soil samples within the three delineated NDVI-based zones. Significant variations in soil properties were obtained among the identified SMZ. The results show that this method could be the foundation for producing SMZ for the use of site-specific management for small-scale agriculture in the tropics.

Copyright Owner

Daniel Brummel



File Format


File Size

111 pages

Included in

Soil Science Commons