Soil Moisture Network

For satellite validation as well as hydrological modeling activities spatially distributed long-term soil moisture measurements are of high relevance in order to represent the encountered variability in landscape characteristics. For this reason, a soil moisture and temperature network with 30 stations was established within the Skjern River Catchment in fall 2009.

To find representative locations for the individual network stations land cover, top- and subsoil data were compiled and the stations distributed according to their respective fractions. Furthermore, the stations were aligned along the long-term precipitation gradient, and placed to cover the HOBE agriculture (Voulund) and forest (Gludsted) field sites, as well as the more loamy area in the east of the catchment. For the stations in agriculture fields, the most frequent crop types, namely barley, grass, wheat, maize, and potatoes, were considered.

At each station Decagon 5TE sensors were installed at 0-5, 20-25 and 50-55cm depth. Additionally, in summer 2010 sensors were installed in the organic surface layers encountered at the sites with natural vegetation. The 5TE sensors simultaneously measure soil moisture, temperature and electrical conductivity. The data is logged at 30 minutes interval.

This data is also contributing to the International Soil Moisture Network (

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