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Using Spectrometer to measure soil nutrient solutions

  1. Dec 2, 2007 #1
    Hi Guys,

    Sorry for dumping this thread in here, I really wouldn't know where this would fit...

    I'm a farmer in Australia and I'm trying out these really simple devices to measure nutrient levels in my soil, they're basically a ceramic container with a small hose that gets buried into the root zone of my crop, I use a syringe to create a vacuum in the container which slowly draws soil moisture over night for extraction the following day.

    My question is: Can the N,P,K,Ca,Mg levels be measured in a Spectrometer? Is it complicated if it can be done? Do you need a certain type of spectrometer?


    Vito Mancini
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 3, 2007 #2
    As I know, those elements are in traced level so it is nearly impossible to use some kinds of photospectrographs to identify and quantify. You can use techniques such as ICPs or atomic asorption for the purpose.
  4. Dec 3, 2007 #3
    All I know is that the results that I've been getting back from the labs are returned in ppm... is that trace level? I spoke to someone today and they said you may be able to use reagents to do the trick, anyone know?

    Thanks for your comment pixel01

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