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Soil Instrumental Methods

Environment: Water and Waste

  1. M.R. Carter1,
  2. D. Curtin2,
  3. E.G. Gregorich3

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/9780470027318.a0867m

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

How to Cite

Carter, M., Curtin, D. and Gregorich, E. 2006. Soil Instrumental Methods. Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Charlottetown, Canada

  2. 2

    New Zealand Institute of Crop & Food Research, Christchurch, New Zealand

  3. 3

    Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (29 DEC 2015)


Instrumental methods play an important role in the analysis of soil material. Soil is composed of mineral, organic, water, and air components. Analytical methods are required that characterize the fitness or quality of soils to perform various functions, such as providing a medium for plant growth, recycling waste products, and regulating and storing water, energy, and nutrients. The objective of this article is to describe the basic concept and approach to laboratory analysis of soil, and to outline the application of techniques used in the analysis of soil quality properties. Emphasis is placed on soil sampling and sample preparation, followed by a description of the possible instrumental methods available for the analysis of the chemical, biochemical, and physical properties of soil.