An automated sampling system for large soil column transport studies

B. L. Woodbury, S. D. Comfort, W. L. Powers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


An automated column effluent sampling system for large unsaturated soil columns was constructed and evaluated. The automated collection system consist of a programmable three-solenoid valve system that maintains a constant matric potential at the bottom of the soil column and periodically switches column effluent from a waste receptacle to a sampling vial. We compared the automated system to a traditional vacuum chamber-fraction collector system that continuously sampled all column effluent. Comparisons were made by measuring 3H2O breakthrough curves (BTCs) generated by the two collection systems using the same intact soil columns. No significant differences were observed in 3H2O BTCs between collection systems. These results indicate that the automated collection system is effective for large column transport studies and provides additional advantages by maintaining effluent resolution (sample volume), yet reduces sample size (numbers) and labor required for sample collection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2163-2166
Number of pages4
JournalTransactions of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1996


  • Fate and transport
  • Miscible displacement
  • Solute transport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'An automated sampling system for large soil column transport studies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this