Soil Moisture Sensors

Angela Knuth and NASA members
Figure 1. Angela Knuth shows some of the NASA team the current technology that they use and ways that she would like to see improvements to increase efficiency on the farm.

NASA’s Earth Sciences Division Visits Nebraska Farms

September 7, 2022
The Space for Ag tour brought NASA scientists and Nebraska farmers together to collaborate on new ways NASA technology and tools can support the agriculture industry.

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Soil water sensor
Figure 1. Early installation of sensors helps to minimize root and leaf damage and makes it easy to get around the field with the pickup or ATV to install the equipment.

Study Reviews Farmer Irrigation Scheduling Tendencies in Central Nebraska

June 15, 2022
While a recent study revealed that irrigators tend to overwater on wetter years, extension experts recommend data-driven decisions for optimizing yields, saving water and lowering cost of production.  

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Pivot irrigation

Scheduling the Last Few Irrigations of the Season Deserves More of Your Management Time Than Earlier Irrigations

August 19, 2021
University of Nebraska irrigation scheduling recommendations encourage irrigators to allow crops to continue using more of the stored soil water starting in August and continuing into September when the crop matures.

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Sorghum plant in field

TAPS Program Makes Plans for 2021, Including Change to Sorghum Competition

January 4, 2021
The Testing Ag Performance Solutions (TAPS) program is looking for participants for the 2021 competition as it tailors the upcoming season to accommodate new technologies, methods and practices in farm management.

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Figure 1. Corn in one of the irrigation research plots at the South Central Agricultural Lab was starting to show signs of stress Wednesday.
Figure 1. Corn in one of the irrigation research plots at the South Central Agricultural Lab was starting to show signs of stress Wednesday.

Soil Water Content- and Soil Matric Potential-Based Irrigation Trigger Values for Different Soil Types

July 11, 2019
Keeping a close eye on soil water content in individual fields can help optimize irrigation efficiency. This article explores how to use research-based trigger points for various soil types using soil water content-based sensors or soil matric potential-based sensors. Nebraska research has shown that having 25% more water than needed in the maize root-zone reduced grain yields as much as 15 bu/ac.

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Soil moisture sensor only partially installed due to dry ground

Determining Beginning Soil Moisture for Planning Decisions

April 12, 2018
Soil moisture sensors installed now can provide valuable information for dryland producers who want to determine existing soil moisture level and adjust cropping or planting plans accordingly. The authors installed and will be monitoring soil moisture readings at six sites in south central Nebraska.

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