Microwave oven use for soil moisture content determination in different soils

Maria Hermínia Ferreira Tavares, Décio Lopes Cardoso, Daniele Patrícia Gentelini, Antonio Gabriel Filho, Evandro André Konopatski


In the present research the use of a microwave oven for the soil moisture content determination was analyzed, comparing the results with the values given by the conventional oven drying, using nine soils, with different textures. The results obtained by either method did not show appreciable differences for the soil samples. When the microwave oven was used, the variation among replicates decreased with the sample size and with the fine particles percentage in the soil. The regression analysis showed that a power law, y = kxn, adjusted the date with a large correlation (R = 0.9997) for all the soils. The n exponent values, near to the unity, indicated that the water removal mechanism showed a behavior near to the linearity in function of the time and that neither the initial water content nor the soil mass influenced the process. The k values in the regression equations showed that the process acts more intensively on clayey soils than on sandy ones. The experimental results allowed to conclude that the microwave oven may be used as an alternative to soil content measurement, resulting in time economy.


Electromagnetic field; Oven drying; Soil moisture content.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5433/1679-0359.2008v29n3p529

Semina: Ciênc. Agrár.
Londrina - PR
E-ISSN 1679-0359
DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359
E-mail: semina.agrarias@uel.br
Este obra está licenciado com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial 4.0 Internacional