# User manual | instructions (English)

```Advanced Practical Course Environmental Physics
F52: Electromagnetic Methods in
Applied Geophysics
Institute of Environmental Physics
Heidelberg University
Patrick Klenk and Stefan Jaumann
Version: August 2015
Contents
1 Introduction
2 Soil
2.1
2.2
2.3
2.4
1
Physics
Porous media . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Macroscopic state variables . . . . . . . .
Hydraulic dynamics in the vadose zone .
Parameterizations . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.4.1 Soil water characteristic function
2.4.2 Concluding remarks . . . . . . . .
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3 Electromagnetics
3.1 Electromagnetic Wave Propagation in Matter . . . . . . . .
3.1.1 Maxwell’s Equations and Preliminary Assumptions .
3.1.2 The Electrical Conductivity . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.1.3 The Dielectric Permittivity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.1.4 Propagation of Electromagnetic Waves . . . . . . . .
3.2 Guided Waves - Transmission Line Theory . . . . . . . . . .
3.3 Measuring Material Properties with Electromagnetic Waves .
3.3.1 The Reflection Coefficient . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.3.2 Wavelet Concept . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.4 The Relative Dielectric Permittivity of Soils . . . . . . . . .
3.4.1 The Relative Permittivity of Water . . . . . . . . . .
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4 Petrophysical Relationship
21
5 Time Domain Reflectometry
5.1 Measurement Principle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5.2 Determination of the Relative Dielectric Permittivity from the TDR
5.3 Electrical Conductivity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5.4 Measurement Volume . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5.5 Concluding Remarks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Signal
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6.1 Measurement Principle . . .
6.2 Measurement System . . . .
6.3 Measurement Setups . . . .
6.3.1 Common Offset (CO)
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i
Contents
6.4
6.5
6.6
7 Site
7.1
7.2
7.3
7.4
6.3.2 Multi-channel GPR . . . . .
Energy Loss and Penetration Depth
Signal Resolution . . . . . . . . . .
Concluding Remarks . . . . . . . .
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Introduction: ASSESS-GPR
Construction and basic characteristics .
Exemplary GPR measurement . . . . .
Previous studies at ASSESS-GPR . . .
Alternate field site: Grenzhof . . . . .
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8 Experiments
8.1 Structure and aims of the experiments . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.2 Guiding questions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.3 Laboratory measurements using TDR . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.3.1 Basics: Performing TDR measurements . . . . . . . .
8.3.2 Calibration of TDR sensors . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.3.3 Measurement: TDR signals from a sand column . . .
8.3.4 Measurement: Assessing the Influence of conductivity
8.4 Field measurements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.4.1 Planning your measurement . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8.4.2 Measurements you will need for evaluation . . . . . .
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47
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9 Evaluation
9.1 Evaluation of the TDR measurements . . . . . . .
9.1.1 Qualitative description of TDR signals . .
9.1.2 TDR signals from the sand column . . . .
9.1.3 Assessing the influence of conductivity . .
9.1.4 TDR field data . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
9.2 Evaluation of the GPR field measurements . . . .
9.2.1 Evaluation of measured data . . . . . . . .
9.2.2 Comparison between methods and to TDR
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data
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Bibliography
A MatlabGPR
A.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.1.1 Software structure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.1.2 A primer on method names . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.1.3 Disclaimer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.1.4 Authorship and License . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.2 Hands on! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
A.2.2 Task 2: Evaluating a field scanner measured CMP
A.2.3 Task 3: Basic frequency evaluation (20min) . . .
ii
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(1h)
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1 Introduction
This practical course serves as an introduction to the scientific field of soil hydrology.
Soil hydrology focuses primarily on understanding and predicting the water distribution
and the movement of water and solutes in soils. In recent years, the field has profited
a great deal from combining high-resolution, high-precision measurement methods with
state-of the art numerical modeling and simulation tools. While advanced measurement
methods allow for an ever more precise imaging of near-surface hydrologic processes,
numerical modeling methods have been proven to be an invaluable tool for obtaining a
consistent description of these observed water dynamics in soils.
Hence, two main aspects have emerged in the framework of this advanced practical course:
(i) the modeling of soil water dynamics and (ii) its measurement both in the laboratory
and in the field with geophysical methods. However, as the science and our group’s
capabilities advance, the material which we would like to convey to you throughout this
course has outgrown the scope of one single practical field course. Hence, starting in 2015,
this practical course has been divided into two parts, which can be occasionally combined
into one double course:
F52: Electromagnetic Methods in Applied Geophysics This is the more experimental
part of the course. A particular focus is the application of two electromagnetic geophysical methods: time domain reflectometry (TDR) and more importantly ground
penetrating radar (GPR). The first is a high-precision point scale method while the
latter can also yield information about distinct subsurface structures.
F53: Numerical Modeling in Soil Physics In the framework of this second field course,
current state of the art modeling techniques are applied both for describing the
water movement and the propagation of electromagnetic waves in soils. The aim
is both to predict a priori what we would likely be to observe in dedicated field
experiments and to explain or at least support previously achieved experimental
findings.
Both parts are intrinsically linked as they tackle shared research questions from different
angles. Hence, you will benefit greatly from participating in both practical courses if you
have a particular interest in the fields of soil physics, soil hydrology or hydrogeophysics.
In any case you will notice, that large parts of the basic theory are shared between both
of the employed experimental methods for F52, while the description of F53 turns to the
details and pitfalls of modeling procedures instead.
1
1 Introduction
Motivation
Water is important to sustain life on Earth as it is one limiting factor for plant growth
and thus for the production of nutrients for animals and human beings.
Most of the world’s food is produced with the help of irrigation of groundwater and
fertilization. Since the time scale of groundwater renewal is several thousand years, it
is vital to use the groundwater efficiently and to minimize its pollution with fertilizers.
Evaporation, groundwater recharge, and solute transport depend strongly on the soil
hydraulic material properties of the soil, which depend on the soil water content and vary
over many orders of magnitude in a very non-linear way.
Thus, to optimize food production and fresh water consumption, the development of a
fast and non-invasive method to determine soil hydraulic material properties is needed.
Measuring the Volumetric Water Content
There is a huge variety of methods, which aim to measure the water content of the soil.
These methods can be distinguished in direct or indirect, in invasive or non-invasive techniques as well as concerning to the scale of their application. Here, indirect measurements
are methods, where the water content is obtained via physical proxy quantities such as dielectric material properties. In the following only a few examples will be given to measure
the soil water content.
The most prominent direct and invasive technique is the gravimetric method. Here,
a previously extracted moist soil sample with a known volume is weighted, dried and
weighted again. From this, one can obtain the gravimetric as well as the volumetric water
content at a single point. Disadvantageously, this method is very time consuming, when
studying the distribution of the water content at the field scale.
An example for an indirect and almost non-invasive techniques is the neutron probe, which
can be installed in a borehole. Here, neutrons are emitted and transmitted through the
soil sample of interest. The scattering of these neutrons depends on the amount of water
in the soil. Unfortunately, this technique is again only applicable on a local scale and it
is not completely without healthy risks for the operator.
Some measurement techniques of the soil water content are based on the dielectric method.
Here, the dielectric permittivity of the soil is used as a proxy for the volumetric water
content, because the relative permittivity of water (εwater ≈ 80) is significantly higher
than of the soil matrix (εmatrix ≈ 4 − 5) and of the air (εair = 1) within the soil pore space.
Examples for this class of techniques are the time domain reflectometry (TDR) and the
ground penetrating radar (GPR), which will be applied in this practical course. For both
methods, the travel time of either guided or free electromagnetic waves is measured, which
is closely related to the relative permittivity of the medium via the electromagnetic wave
velocity. Here, TDR can be recognized as a method for local measurements, where GPR is
applied on the regional scale for water content measurements for a few tenth to hundreds
2
of meter survey length.
Guiding Questions
1. On which physical and environmental processes does the water content
have a major impact?
2. What is the measurement principle of the applied methods?
Questions for some own Thoughts
4. Which physical and environmental parameters can lead to water
content changes in the soil?
5. How can water be distributed vertically in the soil and which
physical processes determine this distribution?
Acknowledgements
Over the years, several persons have added and expanded on this practical course script.
We especially acknowledge contributions (in alphabetical order) by Jens S. Buchner, Holger Gerhards, Rebecca Ludwig and Ute Wollschläger.
3
1 Introduction
4
2 Soil Physics
In this chapter, several fundamental concepts of soil physics are introduced which will be
the foundation for explaining and modeling some of the hydraulic processes which may
be observed in this field course. The aim of this section is not to present a comprehensive
theory of soil physics as such, but to briefly outline a macroscopic description of the
movement of water in soils based on few effective hydraulic parameters. Large parts of
this section are taken from Klenk (2012), all considerations largely follow the much more
in-depth treatment which can be found in the soil physics lecture notes by Roth (2012).
2.1 Porous media
Soil physics aims at describing the movement of water and solutes in the soil. A soil in
this context can usually be characterized as a porous medium. Following Roth (2012),
such a description of a soil as a porous medium assumes (i) a division of the total volume
into soil matrix and pore space which is filled by one or more fluids, (ii) the existence of
a characteristic length scale l, down to which each volume element consists of both soil
matrix and pore space and (iii) the interconnectedness of the pore space for allowing the
movement of water and solutes. The volume fraction of the pore space is denoted by the
porosity φ.
2.2 Macroscopic state variables
A direct description of the properties of the porous medium is cumbersome and not conducive to the type of problems which will be addressed in the framework of this thesis.
However, based on the existence of the characteristic length scale l, we can invoke the
existence of a suitable averaging volume, a so-called Representative Elementary Volume
(REV), containing all characteristic microscopic heterogeneities of the medium. Suitably
averaging the microscopic quantities describing the properties at the pore scale over such
a REV, the hydraulic state of the system can be described by two macroscopic state
variables, the volumetric fluid content and the potential energy density of the respective
phases. Neglecting the potential presence of solutes and assuming a constant temperature T, these state variables are determined by the height z and the pressure pi in the
respective phase i. In the context of this thesis we can restrict all following considerations
to two phases, namely air and water. Then, the volumetric fluid contents for air and
5
2 Soil Physics
z=0
~g
d~z
z0
hm = 0
~h
~z
Figure 2.1: Convention of the axes orientation: The z-axis and the gravitation vector ~g are
parallel and pointing downwards. At the surface z is equal to zero. The matrix
potential hm has to be zero at the position of the water table which located at z0 .
water, θa and θw can be defined by:
θi =
Vi
,
V
(2.1)
with Vi the volume of the respective fluid phase, and V denoting the total volume. The
potential energy densities ψa and ψw are defined as the energy which would be needed for
moving a unit’s volume of this phase from a suitable reference state {p0 , z0 } to a certain
location within the porous medium characterized by {pi , z}:
ψi (x) = pi − p0 +
Z
z
z0
~g ρi (z 0 ) d~z0 = pi − p0 − ρg(z − z0 ).
(2.2)
A suitable z = z0 can for instance represent the position of the water table or the deepest
point in the considered profile; p0 will in our case be assumed to be atmospheric pressure.
2.3 Hydraulic dynamics in the vadose zone
The vadose zone is commonly viewed as the unsaturated part of the soil profile above
a ground water table. Assuming an arbitrarily mobile airphase, the movement of water
can be described by a partial differential equation, the Richards equation, which will be
derived in this section based on the conservation of mass and an empirical flux law.
An arbitrarily mobile airphase is a reasonable assumption for profile parts far away from
the groundwater table where the air phase can be assumed to be continuous and connected
to the atmosphere. In this case, the movement of air will be approximately instantaneous
as compared to the movement of water. Hence we can assume pa = p0 and restrict our
considerations to describing the movement of the water phase. This region is usually
6
2.3 Hydraulic dynamics in the vadose zone
denoted as the degenerate multiphase regime. With these assumptions and further assuming the incompressibility of water under these circumstances (i.e. ρw = const), the
corresponding soil water potential ψw can be written, based on equation 2.2, as:
ψw = ψm + ψg = pw − p0 − ρg(z − z0 ) = pw − pa − ρg(z − z0 ),
(2.3)
with the matric potential
ψm = pw − pa ,
(2.4)
ψg = −ρg(z − z0 ).
(2.5)
and the gravitational potential
From the definition 2.4 the matric potential will be negative for bound water (in the
vadose zone) and positive for free water (e.g., in the ground water). At times it might be
convenient to express the soil water potential in terms of height.
Dividing equation 2.3 by ρw g yields the so-called hydraulic head hw :
hw = hm − (z − z0 ),
(2.6)
hm =
ψm
ρw g
(2.7)
describing the negative height above z0 for the corresponding potential. For z0 = 0 at the
position of the water table, and equilibrium conditions (hw = 0), hm = z holds.
The conservation of mass for a fluid phase i is given by:
h i
∂t [θi ρi ] + ∇ · ρi j~i = 0,
(2.8)
with the macroscopic volume flux j~i . Assuming again water to be incompressible (i.e.
ρw = const), the conservation of water can be expressed accordingly:
∂t θw + ∇ · j~w = 0,
(2.9)
with the water flux j~w , as long as there is no explicit extraction of water from the considered volume (for example by pumping).
In porous media, a macroscopic volume flux can be described by an empirical macroscopic
flux law, Darcy’s law:
j~i = −Ki ∇ψi ,
(2.10)
stating that a slow, stationary flux of a Newtonian fluid i will be proportional to the
forcing by a potential gradient and directed in the negative direction of this gradient.
For describing fluid movement in unsaturated porous media, this is supplemented by the
Buckingham conjecture assuming that in this case the factor of proportionality Ki will
7
2 Soil Physics
depend on the respective fluid content θi . This yields the Buckingham-Darcy law,
which reads expressed for water flux:
j~w = −Kw (θw ) ∇ψw ,
(2.11)
with the hydraulic conductivity Kw (θw ). Hence, while the water movement in the ground
water can be described by an approximately constant value, the hydraulic conductivity
in the unsaturated zone Kw (θw ) will be a strong function of water content.
Now, inserting equation 2.11 into equation 2.9 and using the relationship 2.3, this yields
the Richards equation:
∂t θw (ψm ) − ∇ · [Kw (θw (ψm )) [∇ψm − ρg]] = 0,
(2.12)
which has first been formulated by Richards (1931). We have to reiterate that this
equation has just been derived under the explicit assumptions of a degenerate multiphase
regime, i.e. it is strictly only applicable for parts of the soil profile with sufficiently
small water contents. This has to be kept in mind, especially for comparing numerical
simulations and the results of measurements under conditions close to saturation.
equation 2.12 also acknowledges the strong dependency of the water content θw on the
matric potential ψm . Hence, for solving this highly non-linear equation, it needs to be
supplemented by constitutive relationships for the soil water characteristic θw (ψm ) and
the hydraulic conductivity function K (ψm ). These relationships are commonly supplied
by different parameterization models which describe these relations for a given soil with
a set of effective parameters. As will be shown in the following section, these parameters
can in turn be associated with certain hydraulic properties of the studied system.
2.4 Parameterizations
The two most widely acknowledged models for these two constitutive relationships have
been provided by Mualem-van Genuchten and Mualem-Brooks-Corey. Dropping the explicit subscript w, both models are most conveniently formulated in terms of the hydraulic
head hm and the water saturation Θ:
Θ :=
θ − θr
,
θs − θr
(2.13)
with saturated and residual water contents θs and θr , respectively. The saturated water
content is in general not equal to the porosity φ of the medium, since depending in the
specific conditions even at saturation the medium can retain some entrapped air. The
residual water content describes the amount of water which cannot be simply removed
from the medium by hydraulic processes, for example by applying a pressure gradient.
8
2.4 Parameterizations
58
3 Fluids in Porous Media
m
z 3.3 Material Properties
⇢g
z
8:25, June 4, 2007
⇤m
⇥g
rmax
rmax
Figure 3.19.
Hydraulic capacity
of porous medium
illustrated for a bundle
of capillaries.
z
capillary fringe
m /[⇢g]
z
capillary
0 fringe
✓
✓0
⇤m /[⇥g]
Figure 3.12.
Hydraulic capacity
of porous medium
illustrated for a bu
of capillaries.
Figure 2.2: A simple model for the soil is a bundle of capillaries with a distribution of
III the size of the capillary fringe.
II
height above water table [m]
Figure 3.20.
Hysteresis of hydraulic capacity in natural
porous
3
media during invasion of fluid 2 into pore initially
filled with fluid 1, and vice versa.
2.5
I
2
1
Figure 3.13.
Hysteresis of hydraulic capacity in natu
porous media during invasion of fluid 2
pore initially filled with fluid 1, and vi
versa.
bundle. by
Above
fringe, the fluid fraction decreases monotoni
Denoting the corresponding change of the fluid fraction
✓,the
wecapillary
define the
with
height.
Consider
a
thin
horizontal slab with height increment z, w
hydraulic capacity C as the ratio 2✓/ m , in the limit
m ! 0.
corresponds to
the increment ⇤m = ⇥g z of the matric potential acc
We thus already recognize the important factingthat
✓( m )Denoting
can be the
readcorresponding increment of the fluid frac
to (3.25).
directly from the fluid fraction for
a
stationary
situation
above
a
free
fluid
by
, thezone
hydraulic capacity C is then the ratio
/ ⇤m , in the
transition
1.5
table. This remains true also for natural porous media.
⇤m ⇥ 0.
recognize the important fact that (⇤m ) can be
We notice in passing, that the distribution of radiiWe
of athus
bundle
of capillaries
1
the fluid
fraction
can be calculated easily from measurements of directly
C( m ).fromThis
cannot
be above a free fluid table for a statio
situation. This remains true also for natural porous media.
extended to natural porous media, however.
We notice in passing, that the distribution of radii of a bundle of capill
0.5
can be calculated
from measurements of C(⇤m ). This canno
Porous Medium
While C( m ) and ✓( m ) are unique
functions easily
for a buncapillary
extended
natural
porous media, however.
dle of cylindrical capillaries, the situations becomes
muchtofringe
more
complicated
Porous
Medium
for a general porous medium where theθ pore0.1
is0.2
almost
constant.
θs C(⇤m ) and (⇤m ) are unique functions for a
0.15
0.25 never
0.3 While
r
dle
of
cylindrical
capillaries,
the situations becomes much more complic
To understand the impact of this, we consider a single pore that is wider
water
content
θ [−]
for
a
general
porous
medium
where the pore radius is almost never cons
in the middle (Figure 3.20). Starting from a pore that is initially saturated
To understand the impact of this, we consider a single pore that is w
with fluid 1, pressure at one end shall decrease gradually.
Once
it falls
below
in table
the middle
(Figure
3.13). Starting
a pore that is initially satur
Figure
2.3:
Soil
water
profile
above
a
water
in
a
homogeneous
sandfrom
in hydrostatic
the entry pressure for fluid 2, the interface moves with
the atpore
fluid 1, into
pressure
one up
end shall decrease gradually. Once it falls b
to the next poreequilibrium
throat, where the pore radius is the
minimal.
This corresponds
entry pressure
for fluid 2, the interface moves gradually into the por
to the
pore throat,
where
to meniscus I in Figure 3.20. Reducing the pressure
anynext
further
empties
thethe pore radius is minimal. This corresp
meniscus
3.13. is
Reducing the pressure any further empties
entire cavity and leads to meniscus II because the to
pore
in Figure
the cavity
2.4.1
Soil
water
characteristic
function
entire
cavity
and
to
meniscus
too large to sustain the interface whose radius is determined by the pressure II because the pore radius in the cavi
too large to sustain the interface whose radius is determined by the pres
jump across the interface. Reverting at this point and gradually increasing
jump across the interface. Reverting at this point and gradually increa
the An
pressure
back
I, however.
fluid
apt formulation
thetosoil
water characteristic
function
can
betobased
on considerthe pressure
will1 not
back
I, however.
the ing
cavity
until
the
pressure
is
increased
such
that
the
jump
at
the
interface
the cavity until
the pressure
is increasedapproximately
such that the jump at the inte
the porous medium as a bundle of equivalent
capillaries.
Assuming
corresponds
to the
any further
cylindrical
or spherical
r, Increasing
can behas
related to the capillary
fluid 1 fill the entire cavity and actually also the adjacent throat because
pressure as given by the Young-Laplace law:
changes of the fluid content are referred to as
pwHaines
− pa jumps
−2σw[Haines 1930].
hmthat
= for a porous
= medium
, both the
(2.14)
Understanding a single pore, we expect
ρw g
rρw g
with the interfacial energy density of water σw = 0.0725 N/m2 .
Essentially this means that the size of the respective pores determines the strength with
which the water is bound in the soil. Conversely, there is a certain maximum pore size for
9
2 Soil Physics
a given matric head in which the water can still be held by capillary forces. When applying
a larger pressure gradient, pores of this size will be drained. Hence, in a stationary profile,
we will expect a certain region above the water table which will be held at saturation due
to capillary forces. The extent of this Capillary Fringe is determined by the largest
pores in the medium, which can sustain the smallest capillary rise.
Hence, the finer the material, the larger the expected height of the capillary fringe. Above
the capillary fringe we can expect a gradual decrease of saturation towards the residual
water content θr . In equilibrium, the shape of this transition zone will depend mainly
on the variety of different pore sizes, i.e. the specific pore size distribution. The wider
the pore size distribution, the more gradual the transition. For a very narrow pore size
distribution all pores will drain for a very narrow range of pressure gradients, leading to
a correspondingly rather small transition zone. Based on these considerations, one might
envision the soil water characteristic in a form as has been drawn in figure 2.2.
There is a multitude of parameterizing models which characterize this system in the literature. The three most commonly applied models are the Brooks-Corey parameterization
(Brooks (1966)), the van Genuchten parameterization and a simplified version of the latter
(Van Genuchten (1980)). figure 2.3 has in fact been calculated based on the Brooks-Corey
parameterization, which is given by:
( h
i−λ
;
−hm > h0
− hhm0
(2.15)
Θ (hm ) =
1;
−hm < h0
with the air entry value h0 > 0 and the shape parameter λ. The more intuitive approach
is to consider its inverse function, which is defined for Θ < 1 as:
1
hm (Θ) = −h0 Θ− λ .
(2.16)
In connection with equation 2.14, this formulation highlights the association of the air
entry value h0 with the largest available pores as discussed above, and the connection
of the parameter λ to the shape of the transition zone above the capillary fringe (and
in turn to the specifics of the pore size distribution). In general, h0 can be viewed as a
scaling factor since it has an influence on the shape of the transition zone, as has, e.g.,
been discussed in Dagenbach (2012).
For completeness, the general van Genuchten parameterization is given by:
−m
Θ (hm ) = [1 + [−αhm ]n ]
,
(2.17)
with shape parameters α > 0, n > 1 and m > 0. The corresponding inverse function can
be expressed as:
i n1
1 h −1
m
−1 .
(2.18)
hm (Θ) = − Θ
α
Setting m = 1 − 1/n leads to the special case of the simplified van Genuchten parameterization with
Θ (hm ) = [1 + [−αhm ]n ]
10
−1+1/n
(2.19)
−103
−102
−101
silt
−100
−1
sand
−10
−2
−10
0
hydraulic conductivity K [m s−1]
2.4 Parameterizations
0.2
0.4
water content θ [−]
−5
10
sand
−6
10
−7
10
silt
−8
10
−9
10
−10
10
0
0.2
0.4
water content θ [−]
Figure 2.4: Soil water characteristic function h(θ) (left) and corresponding hydraulic conductivity function K(θ) (right) plotted for a homogeneous sand and a homogeneous silt. The solid lines have been calculated using the Mualem-BrooksCorey parametrization, the dashed lines are based on the equivalent simplified
Mualem-van Genuchten formulation. The parameters have been taken from
Roth (2012). Note the logarithmic scales on the vertical axes.
and its inverse formulation
i1/n
n
1 h 1−n
Θ
−1
,
(2.20)
α
which has found the most widespread use in literature. The correct choice of a suitable parameterization may depend on the specific application. For example, the van Genuchten
formulations have certain advantages for numerical simulations due to their differentiability. However, as has for example been shown by Dagenbach et al. (2012), the simplified van
Genuchten parameterization is not necessarily suitable for describing the capillary fringe
response in a sandy material to a Ground-Penetrating Radar signal. In this case either a
Brooks-Corey type model or an equivalently formulated full van Genuchten parameterization has to be used. For more discussion on the different advantages and drawbacks of
the different formulations, refer to Dagenbach (2012) or Roth (2012).
hm (Θ) = −
Hydraulic conductivity function
Similarly, the hydraulic conductivity function K (θ) will depend strongly on the pore
geometry. This can be expressed by the model of Mualem (1976), which introduces a few
"R Θ
K (Θ) = Ks Θτ
R01
0
hm (ϑ)−1 dϑ
hm (ϑ)−1 dϑ
#2
.
(2.21)
11
2 Soil Physics
Here, Ks is the hydraulic conductivity at saturation, while the term Θτ is a measure for
the tortuosity of the porous medium. In general, τ is simply treated as an additional fit
parameter. Under most conditions a value of τ = 0.5 is usually employed.
Inserting equation 2.15 into equation 2.21 yields the Mualem-Brooks-Corey model for the
hydraulic conductivity function:
2
K (Θ) = K0 Θτ +2+ /λ .
(2.22)
Similarly, by inserting equation 2.20 into equation 2.21 the corresponding Mualem-van
Genuchten model is obtained:
i1−1/n 2
h
n
τ
.
(2.23)
K (Θ) = Ks Θ 1 − 1 − Θ n−1
In fact, the availability of the last analytical expression for K (Θ) has been the main reason
for the formulation of the simplified van Genuchten parameterization. For the full van
Genuchten parameterization (equation 2.21), the corresponding conductivity relationship
can in general only be determined numerically.
2.4.2 Concluding remarks
In summary, these considerations leave us with a set of either six Mualem-Brooks-Corey
parameters {θs , θr , h0 , λ, Ks , τ } or seven Mualem-van Genuchten parameters {θs , θr , α, n, m, Ks , τ }
which also get reduced to six for the simplified formulation. These parameters describe
the physical properties of the considered medium and allow the description of soil water
dynamics in the framework of the Richards equation as formulated above.
An overview of both relationships calculated for two different kinds of materials can be
found in figure 2.4. The two most important results for our purposes which can be seen in
these diagrams are (i) in a fine-grained silty material, the transition zone can be expected
to be much wider than in a comparatively coarse grained sand, and (ii) the corresponding
hydraulic conductivity functions may vary over several orders of magnitude with water
content, most prominently for low water contents.
12
3 Electromagnetics
3.1 Electromagnetic Wave Propagation in Matter
3.1.1 Maxwell’s Equations and Preliminary Assumptions
The relevant Maxwell’s equations to study electromagnetic wave propagation are
∇ × H(r, t) = Jext (r, t) +
∇ × E(r, t) = −µ0
∂
D(r, t)
∂t
∂
H(r, t)
∂t
(3.1)
.
(3.2)
[ E - electrical field, D - displacement current, H - magnetic field ]
[ Jext - external current density, µ0 - vacuum permeability (4π×10−7 N/A2 ) ]
Here, the equations are given for non-magnetic matter, because the most materials related
to the experiments in this practical course are not magnetizable. Therefore, the relative
magnetic permeability is set to 1. This is only violated, when soils with a non-negligible
iron content are studied.
Furthermore, in equation 3.1 an external current density is mentioned. It is the source of
the electromagnetic waves and therefore represents the antenna in the system.
3.1.2 The Electrical Conductivity
The electric conductivity results, when an incoming electric field leads to a movement of
unbounded charge carriers. For its description, one can start with the equation of motion
according to Drude (1900)
∂
q
∂2
s(r, t) + f s(r, t) =
E(r, t)
2
∂t
∂t
m
.
(3.3)
[ s - elongation of particles from an initial position, f -damping term due to friction / collisions ]
[ m - mass of the particles, q - charge of the particles ]
The movement of all particles with a particle density n leads to a resulting current density
J, which is given as
J(r, t) = −n q ∂t s(r, t) .
(3.4)
13
3 Electromagnetics
Substituting this into equation 3.3, this results
∂t J(r, t) + f J(r, t) =
q2 n
E(r, t) .
m
(3.5)
After a Fourier-transformation, rearranging the equation and employing Ohms Law J(r, ω) =
σ(ω) E(r, ω), we obtain
σ(ω) =
q2 n
(f − i ω) m
(3.6)
[ σ - electrical conductivity. ]
Important: The electric conductivity is an effect of unbounded charge carriers and is
in general a complex function of frequency. As can be seen in equations 3.17 and 3.18
attenuation of electromagnetic waves partly goes back to the real part of σ(ω) which itself
depends on the damping factor f (You can see this by reformulating equation 3.6). Hence
one can say that the damping of the movement of free charge carriers partly causes the
attenuation; a fact that is quite intuitive. When using microwaves - as we do here - the
damping term g is found to be dominating in equation 3.6. Then, the electric conductivity
2
function reduces to the direct current electric conductivity σdc = qf mn .
3.1.3 The Dielectric Permittivity
The influence of dielectric material properties is introduced in the displacement current
D. Here, the idea is that an incoming oscillating electric field can lead to a polarization
in the medium. This can be expressed as
D(r, t) = ε0 E(r, t) + P(r, t)
.
(3.7)
[ P - polarization, ε0 - vacuum permittivity (8.854...×10−12 A2 s4 /kg m3 ) ]
This polarization results from displaced charges due to the electric fields1 . Furthermore,
the response due to the polarization induced by an incoming electric field is assumed to
be linear, which is only violated in the research field of high energy laser physics. This
response of the polarization need not to be instantaneous and it can have an aftereffect,
which leads to a general description given as
Z
P(r, t) =
t
R(r, t − t0 ) E(r, t0 ) dt0
,
(3.8)
−∞
which is a convolution of a response function R and the electric field. This response
function describes how the medium reacts, when a single and very sharp electric field
excitation (delta-excitation) occurs.
1
A polarization can also be induced by the magnetic field. In the scope of this work, this will be
neglected.
14
3.1 Electromagnetic Wave Propagation in Matter
This expression leads to a simple product in the frequency domain, which yields
P(r, ω) = χ(r, ω) E(r, ω) ,
(3.9)
[ χ - electric susceptibility, ω - angular frequency (ω=2πν), ν - physical frequency ]
where χ represents the Fourier transformation of the response function R. Then, equation 3.7 leads in the frequency domain with equation 3.9 to
D(r, ω) = ε0 1 + χ(r, ω) E(r, ω) = ε0 ε∗ (r, ω) E(r, ω) .
(3.10)
Here, ε∗ (r, ω) := 1 + χ(r, ω) is defined as the relative dielectric permittivity2 of the
medium.
Important: The relative dielectric permittivity is a quantity of the energy storage of the
medium, due to a polarization of the medium. In the case that the response of the medium
concerning an incoming electric field is instantaneously and without any aftereffect, than
the relative permittivity is a constant. But in general it must be considered as a complex
function
0
00
ε∗ (ω) := ε∗ (ω) − i ε∗ (ω)
(3.11)
depending on the frequency of the incoming electrical field. So, if each frequency component of an incoming electric signal leads to a different response of the medium, the
outgoing signal is deformed. This is called dispersion.
One possible model to do derive a functional expression for ε∗ (ω) is given by the Drude
model (Jackson (2006), p. 358 ff.). This model assumes that the polarization of the
medium is caused by atomic electrons which are located in a harmonic force field leading
to an additional term ω02 s(r, t) on the left hand of equation 3.3. This means that these
electrons are assumed to be bound (by the harmonic force), which is the decisive difference
to the derivation of the electrical conductivity in section 3.1.2. Exactly the bounding force
leads to the appearance of resoncance absorption: In certain frequency ranges (absorption
00
bands) around the resonance frequency ω0 the entity ε∗ (ω) cannot be neglected and
causes the attenuation of electromagnetic waves (equation 3.17).
Howsoever, the derivation of the functional expression for ε∗ (ω) is of minor importance
for this practical course. Hence, you are referred to the literature sources for a deeper
insight.
Note: Electrical conductivity and the dielectric permittivity can be subsumed under a
general relative permittivity via
ε(ω) :=
σ(ω)
+ ε∗ (ω)
i ω ε0
.
(3.12)
Obviously, this entity is in general a complex number with ε(ω) := ε0 (ω) − i ε00 (ω). (For
simplicity reason, we keep the previously mentioned notation of the relative permittivity
ε.)
2
Normally, the notation εr can be found in the literature for the relative dielectric permittivity. Because,
we always refer to this value in the scope of this manual, we neglect the index r.
15
3 Electromagnetics
3.1.4 Propagation of Electromagnetic Waves
An adequate approach solving equation 3.1 and 3.2 is the plane wave approach3 . A single
plane wave is mathematically described as
E(r, t) = E0 ei(ω t−k·r)
.
(3.13)
[ E0 - amplitude factor, k - propagation vector ]
Here, the propagation vector gives mainly the propagation direction. With respect to
Maxwell’s equations, the dispersion relation
ω2
|k| = ω µ0 ε0 ε(ω) = 2 ε(ω)
c0
2
2
(3.14)
[ c0 =(ε0 µ0 )−1/2 - speed of light in vacuum (c0 ≈0.3m/ns) ]
must be fulfilled. From this it is obvious that the length of the propagation vector depends
on the frequency and cannot be chosen arbitrarily.
Propagation Velocity and Attenuation of Plane Waves
Attenuation of a single plane wave always appears if ε00 (ω) 6= 0. To understand this fact,
we assume a plane wave propagating in the x-direction. Then, the phase of equation 3.13
can be rewritten with
ω√ 0
ωp 0
ε (ω) − i ε00 (ω) =
ε − i ε00 := α − iβ
(3.15)
kx =
c0
c0
as
i(ω t − kx x) = i ω t − (α − iβ) x = −β x + i(ω t − α x) ,
(3.16)
where α and β are defined as the real and imaginary part of the x-component of the
propagation vector. Inserting this reformulation into equation 3.13, we can see that α is
responsible for the propagation and β for the attenuation. One possible solution for α
and β - which in general are functions of ε0 , ε00 , and ω - is:
s
ω
α=
c0
3
ε0
+
√
ε02
2
+
ε002
s
ω
and β =
c0
−ε0 +
√
ε02 + ε002
.
2
(3.17)
Mathematically, this means that two plane waves propagating in opposite directions (linearly independent!) are a fundamental solution of the Maxwell equations for a given frequency. And because of
the linearity of Maxwell’s equations, any linear combination of plane waves with different frequencies
obviously is a solution as well; Hence a big function space is covered by this, including wavelets (section 3.3.2). Thinking in the opposite direction, it also means that any observed electromagnetic field
(which by definition is a solution to Maxwell’s equations) can be represented by a linear combination
of plane waves. A fact that is expressed by the often applied Fourier Transform or frequency decomposition. This all enhances the importance of plane waves and explains why it is typically sufficient
to stay limited to plane waves in solving electrodynamic problems.
16
3.2 Guided Waves - Transmission Line Theory
Important: The velocity and the attenuation of a plane wave are functions of both real
and imaginary part of the relative permittivity. Generally, they depend on the frequency,
meaning that each frequency component of an initial electromagnetic wave front is affected
differently. This effect is called dispersion of a wave front.
Assuming that the relative permittivity has only a small imaginary part, which is only
influenced by the electric conductivity, then the plane wave propagation in x-direction in
the medium can be described as
!)
(
√
ε0
x
.
(3.18)
E(x, t) = E0 exp {−σ(ω), x} exp i ω t −
c0
Note: The terms attenuation and absorption are not consistently used in literature.
Sometimes both expressions are used equivalently what increases confusion and is obviously redundant. Thus, we want to distinguish between the two processes here, according
to the following definition: Absorption is only related to the processes included in ε00 (ω):
Resonance absorption and the damping of free charge carrier movement. Attenuation
says something about the electromagnetic wave amplitude: Inserting the equation 3.16
in 3.13, we directly see that the plane wave is attenuated by the factor exp{−βx} (β
is sometimes also called attenuation coefficient). Hence, in general attenuation includes
imaginary and real parts of ε. Therefore, absorption is included as well as scattering and
other effects. However, it is interesting to notice that ε00 6= 0 (→ absorption) is still a
necessary condition for β 6= 0 (→ attenuation). This might be one reason for the given
confusion on the two terms.
3.2 Guided Waves - Transmission Line Theory
Equations 3.1 and 3.2 are the general expressions of Maxwell’s theory, they can be easily
applied to study the propagation of freely propagating waves. If we focus on guided waves
in conductors, then the geometry plays a significant role in the wave propagation.
The theory of the propagation of guided waves in electromagnetism is subsumed in the
transmission line theory. Here, the relevant observable quantities are the voltage V and
the current I. The wave equation in frequency domain for both quantities propagating
only in one dimension (x-direction) are
∂x2 V (x) + ω 2 LC V (x) = 0
∂x2 I(x) + ω 2 LC I(x) = 0 .
(3.19)
(3.20)
[ L - inductance, C - conductance ]
Using a similar approach as equation 3.13 for the voltage or the current, one can obtain
a propagation velocity
1
c0
1
=F √
=F √
v=√
0
µ o ε0 ε
ε0
LC
.
(3.21)
17
3 Electromagnetics
Here, a form-factor F is introduced in order to account for the fact, that the velocity is
influenced by the geometry of the system. In this practical course, the TDR probes are
designed in a way, that F can be assumed as 1.
3.3 Measuring Material Properties with Electromagnetic
Waves
When applying electromagnetic waves to measure material properties, one could basically use two different techniques: (i) transmission or (ii) reflection. For both methods,
one can either evaluate the travel time or the electromagnetic wave amplitude to obtain
information about the material, in which the wave was propagating.
Because in this practical course, we will focus on reflection measurements, a short overview
of the concepts used for this measurement type will be given.
3.3.1 The Reflection Coefficient
For freely propagating waves a reflection always occurs, when the material properties
are changing. Assuming the magnetic permeability to be constant and a perpendicular
incidence, the reflection coefficient is given as
√
√
ε1 − ε2
.
(3.22)
R= √
√
ε1 + ε2
[ ε1 - relative permittivity of the upper layer, ε2 - relative permittivity of the lower layer ]
This is a special formulation of Fresnel’s equation for the reflection of electromagnetic
waves. The Reflection coefficient is the amplitude ratio of the incident to the reflected
wave. Thus, its sign indicates a possible phase shift: if R < 0 a phase factor eiπ is given.
In case of a wavelet (next section), this means that the wavelet is flipped such that positive
amplitudes get negative and vice versa.
Note: This equation is not generally valid for guided waves. Here, a change in the
geometry can also lead to a reflection, although the material properties remain constant.
3.3.2 Wavelet Concept
In the field of GPR and TDR applications, it is assumed that an electromagnetic pulse
with a finite duration in time and a specific shape is emitted. This pulse propagates in
the adjacent medium and it is either directly transmitted to the receiver or it reaches the
receiver after one or several reflections. The sum of all incoming pulses is the measured
signal.
18
3.4 The Relative Dielectric Permittivity of Soils
This pulse can be called wavelet and therefore, the measured signal can be considered
as a superposition of wavelets, where each wavelet travels along a different propagation
path.
In a lot of cases, the measured signal cannot be simply decomposed. For TDR applications
this is mainly due to the dispersion of the initial pulse. For GPR applications this results
from the superposition of different wavelets. Hence, in most applications either of TDR or
GPR, one is trying to identify significant wavelet features. Assuming them to stay almost
undisturbed, one can describe the propagation of these features with the ray approach.
3.4 The Relative Dielectric Permittivity of Soils
Soils can be considered as a three phase medium consisting of the soil matrix, air and
water. Therefore, one has to study the permittivity of each constituent and then of the
mixture. As the permittivity is determined by measuring the wave propagation velocity,
only the real part ε0 can be measured.
Because the relative permittivity of air (ε0air ≈ 1) and the soil matrix (ε0matrix ≈ 4 − 5) can
be considered as constant values in the frequency range of TDR and GPR, we will focus
on the relative permittivity of water and of the mixture.
3.4.1 The Relative Permittivity of Water
Each water molecule can be considered as a dipole, which can be orientated according
to an incoming electromagnetic field. This orientation of the molecules depends on the
frequency of the incoming field. Hence three cases have to be distinguished.
• If the frequency is too high, the molecules cannot follow and thus, they cannot store
electromagnetic energy. This results in a smaller value of the relative permittivity
of water.
• If the frequency is slower than the time for the orientation of each molecule, then
the polarization of the water can reach its maximum, which results in the highest
number of the relative permittivity value.
• For the frequency between these sketched limits, the molecules can follow partially
the alternating electromagnetic fields. Therefore, electromagnetic energy is needed
to orientate the molecules. This energy is either re-emitted or transformed into thermal energy. This phenomenon is called relaxation process, because the reemission is
not instantaneously. Furthermore, it is coupled with absorption of the electromagnetic waves. The frequency at which the most energy is absorbed is called relaxation
frequency.
19
3 Electromagnetics
In addition, the capability for the polarization for the water molecules as well as the relaxation process and the absorption of electromagnetic energy is a function of temperature.
That is because the Brownian motion, which depends on the temperature, counteracts
the orientation of the motions.
Note: For frequencies below 1 GHz, the dielectric permittivity of water can be assumed
to be frequency independent and the imaginary part can be neglected (Gerhards (2008), p.
17). Including temperature the ε0 can be described as a function of temperature according
to Kaatze (1989) as
log10 ε0water = 1.94404 − 1.991 · 10−3 K−1 · (T − 273.15 K)
[ T - temperature in K (Kelvin) ]
20
.
(3.23)
4 Petrophysical Relationship
Over the last decades, a multitude of different models have been proposed for calculating
the composite permittivity of soils ε0c , ranging from purely empirical relationships to more
physically inspired mixing models.
In general, the calculation of ε0c is a non-trivial issue. For example, if at least one constituent exhibits a relaxation behavior in the frequency window of interest, then the
interaction of all constituents can change this relaxation process or even lead to a multirelaxation phenomenon, e.g., due to different molecule interactions as a function of the
distance to surfaces.
If we assume however, that none of the constituents undergoes relaxation, a simple mixing
formula can be applied. Such a model expresses ε0c as a weighted average of the permittivity of all the constituents in the soil. One general formulation has been called the
’Lichteneker-Rother’ equation (e.g., Brovelli and Cassiani (2008)) given by:
εαc
=
n
X
θi εαi ,
(4.1)
i=1
where n denotes the number of constituent phases and the exponent α is a fitting parameter (−1 ≤ α ≤ 1, depending on the alignment of microscopic structures of the considered
composite material with respect to the passing electromagnetic wave). For random alignment of microscopic structures, α = 0.5, leading to the so-called Complex Refractive
Index Model (’CRIM’, e.g., Birchak et al. (1974), or Roth et al. (1990)). Explicitly writing out the sum in equation 4.1 for the three-phase case of soil matrix, air and water, the
composite dielectric permittivity ε0c can then expressed as
p
p
p
p
ε0c = θ ε0water + (φ − θ) ε0air + (1 − φ) ε0matrix ,
(4.2)
[ θ - volumetric water content, φ - porosity ]
Rearranging this equation, one can deduce a formula to determine the volumetric water
content via
p
p
√ 0 p 0
εc − εmatrix − φ ( ε0air − ε0matrix )
p
p
θ=
ε0water − ε0air
p 0
p
(1
−
φ)
εmatrix + φ
1
p
=p 0
ε0c −
,
(4.3)
0
εwater − 1
εwater − 1
21
4 Petrophysical Relationship
which is essentially a linear relationship as a function of the composite dielectric permittivity. Such a functional relationship between a parameter which can be directly measured
with geophysical methods (here the composite dielectric permittivity ε0c ) and a secondary
quantity of interest (here the hydrologic quantity of soil water content θ) is commonly
called a petrophysical relationship.
In our case, measuring the composite relative permittivity allows to determine the water
content in the soil, provided we have additional knowledge or at least reasonable assumptions about the porosity φ, the relative permittivity of the soil matrix ε0matrix as well as the
temperature, which is needed for calculating the permittivity of water ε0water as described
in the previous chapter.
22
5 Time Domain Reflectometry
In soil science, time domain reflectometry (TDR) is a state-of-the-art method to measure
volumetric water content and electrical conductivity of soils. The measurement principle
is based on the analysis of the propagation velocity of guided electromagnetic waves
along a TDR probe through the ground. It allows to determine the dielectric properties
of the medium which are closely related to water content and electrical conductivity. For
interested students, a comprehensive review of the TDR measurement technique is given
by Robinson et al. (2003).
5.1 Measurement Principle
A schematic description of a TDR measurement system is shown in figure 5.1. It consists
of a TDR device which is composed of a signal generator and a sampling unit, and a TDR
probe that is connected to the TDR device via a coaxial cable. The system applied in
this practical course is controlled by a computer.
The measurement principle is based on the measurement of the propagation velocity of a
step voltage pulse along a TDR probe through the ground. The probe is installed such,
that the metal rods are completely surrounded by the soil material. In this experiment,
we apply 3-rod TDR probes where the probe rods are arranged in a horizontal plane with
a constant separation between the rods. In principle, the probe rods can be regarded as
an elongation of the coaxial cable where the middle rod is the inner conductor and the
outer rods represent the outer conductor of the cable. The TDR device generates short
electromagnetic pulses (frequency range: 20 kHz to 1.5 GHz) which propagate along the
coaxial cable and further along the rods of the TDR probe. At positions where erratic
changes in relative permittivity occur, part of the electromagnetic energy is reflected.
This is why TDR was initially developed for detecting failures along transmission line
cables - TDR devices are also known as “cable testers”. The application in soil science is a
modification of this technique. At the head of the TDR probe, part of the electromagnetic
energy is reflected due to the impedance jump between the cable and probe head material.
The remaining fraction of the signal propagates through the soil along the metal rods
which serve as a wave guide. At positions where the dielectric properties of the soil change
erratically, the signal is again partially reflected. In soils with low electrical conductivity,
the remaining part of the electromagnetic energy is finally reflected at the end of the
probe rods.
The temporal development of the voltage of the reflected TDR signal is recorded by the
23
5 Time Domain Reflectometry
Figure 5.1: Measurement principle of a TDR probe and example signal
signal detector of the TDR device. Figure 5.1 shows a characteristic voltage-time diagram
as obtained in a TDR measurement. From the signal response we can deduce the electrical
properties of the material through which the electromagnetic pulse propagates.
5.2 Determination of the Relative Dielectric Permittivity
from the TDR Signal
For the determination of the travel time of the electromagnetic signal along the TDR
rods through the soil we use the two significant reflections which occur in the head and
at the end of the rods of the TDR probe. From these two characteristic points we can
deduce the two-way travel time trod of the electromagnetic signal through the soil: forth
to the end of the probe and back to the probe head. With that one obtains the composite
relative permittivity of the material which surrounds the probe rods
2
ctrod
0
εc =
,
(5.1)
2L
where L is the length of the TDR probe rods. The volumetric soil water content is
determined from the measured relative permittivity using the CRIM formula (equation
4.3).
The reflection from the probe head is independent of the material between the probe rods
24
5.3 Electrical Conductivity
Figure 5.2: Travel time determination from the TDR signal
an hence occurs always at the same travel time and serves as a reference in the travel
time calculation. The travel time of the reflection from the rod ends depends on the
propagation velocity of the electromagnetic wave through the soil. The difference of these
two reflection points determines the travel time of the electromagnetic signal forth and
back through the soil.
The travel time composes of the travel time through the probe head and along the probe
rods:
tprobe = thead + trods .
(5.2)
For an accurate determination of the soil’s relative permittivity the TDR probes first have
to be calibrated in media with known propagation velocities. In our case the calibration
is done by conducting TDR measurements in water and air and correcting for the travel
Determination of the travel time of the electromagnetic signal is done by using the derivative of the TDR signal and taking the largest values of the derivative occurring at the
impedance jump in the probe head and at the end of the rod as reference points (see
figure 5.2).
5.3 Electrical Conductivity
A comprehensive description for measuring electrical conductivity of soils with TDR is
given by Heimovaara et al. (1995). The direct current electric conductivity σdc of the soil
can be determined from the amplitude of the reflected TDR signal:
σdc =
K 1 − R∞
.
Z 1 + R∞
(5.3)
25
5 Time Domain Reflectometry
Figure 5.3: TDR signals for determination of electrical conductivity. Note, that the
TDR100 device used in the practical course directly translates measured voltages into reflection coefficients.
where K is a constant which is determined by the probe geometry, Z is the impedance
of the cable (50 Ω), and R∞ is the reflection coefficient at very long travel times where
no further reflections of the signal occur. At this point the reflection coefficient can be
determined by
R∞ =
V∞ − V0
V0
(5.4)
where V∞ and V0 are the signal amplitudes as shown in Figure 5.3.
The probe geometry constant K can be determined by measuring signals in solutions with
known electrical conductivity σdc,T (at T °C). Alternatively, K can be determined by
K=
ε0 ε0
L
Z0
(5.5)
where ε0 is the electrical field constant, ε0 is the relative permittivity in free space, L is the
probe rod length [m] and Z0 is the probe capacity. Z0 can be determined via a reference
measurement in non-conductive material, as e.g. de-ionized water using
Z0 =
Zε0ref
1 + R0
1 − R0
where ε0ref is the relative permittivity of the non-conductive medium.
26
(5.6)
5.4 Measurement Volume
Figure 5.4: Volume fractions of the total sampling volume (a) rod distance
rod diameter = 10 (b) rod distance : rod diameter = 5
:
5.4 Measurement Volume
The measurement volume of a TDR probe is the volume of soil which has an influence on
the measured TDR signal.
The sensitivity of the TDR probe decreases exponentially perpendicular to the rod axes.
The volume fractions shown in figure 5.4 are determined by the probe geometry and are
independent of the permittivity of the surrounding material. The measurement volume
is primarily determined by the diameter and the distance between the probe rods: an
increase in rod diameter leads to a smaller measurement volume; a larger rod distance
causes a stronger attenuation of the high-frequency components of the TDR signal and
hence a smaller measurement volume.
5.5 Concluding Remarks
TDR probes can be installed vertically and horizontally in the soil. This way, one can investigate the complete profile down to a depth of a few meters. As discussed in section 5.4
the effective measurement volume of a TDR probe is relatively small. Hence, water contents determined from this method only represent local point measurements. For a spatial
analysis of soil water content at the field scale a huge number of measurements is required.
Furthermore, one has to apply adequate interpolation techniques in order to obtain meaningful spatial information about water content distribution. Nevertheless, TDR is still a
state-of-the-art technique in classical soil physics.
In order to obtain a good TDR measurement it is necessary to establish a good contact
between the soil and the probe rods and to avoid air gaps during installation.
In this practical course we exclusively measure average soil moisture content along the
probe rods even if the water content may be changing. Currently inverse techniques are
being developed in soil physics which allow to model the TDR signal and estimate spatial
changes in soil moisture content along the TDR probe. However, these techniques are
computationally intensive and still in a development state and cannot be applied in the
framework of this practical course.
27
5 Time Domain Reflectometry
28
Ground penetrating radar (GPR, RADAR = RAdio Detection And Ranging) is a state-ofthe-art geophysical measurement technique which can be applied to explore near-surface
underground structures. The measurement principle is based on the transmittance of
high-frequency electromagnetic pulses into the ground. The travel time of the emitted
pulses is subsequently recorded by a receiving antenna.
6.1 Measurement Principle
Standard ground penetrating radar systems consist of a transmitting and a receiving
antenna. High-frequency (range: 50 MHz to 1 GHz) electromagnetic pulses are emitted
into the ground by the transmitting antenna. The radar wavelet propagates through the
soil while the velocity of the wavelet depends on the dielectric properties of the ground. At
interfaces, e.g., boundaries of different soil layers or distinct objects, where the dielectric
properties of the different media change erratically, the electromagnetic wave is partially
reflected. The travel time and amplitude of the wavelet is recorded by the receiving
antenna.
In contrast to the TDR technique which has been discussed in the previous chapter,
GPR operates with “free” waves. The travel time of the wavelet which is recorded by
the receiving antenna depends on the path along which the wavelet propagates and the
dielectric properties of the materials. Figure 6.2 shows travel path of various wave types
through the soil which may occur in the presence of two layers with different relative
permittivities.
The first wavelet which is detected by the receiving antennas the so-called air wave which
propagates through the air between both antennas with the vacuum speed of light. The
second wavelet which reaches the receiver is the so-called ground wave. It propagates also
directly between the transmitter and the receiver along the air-soil interface and can be
applied to infer the near-surface soil moisture content. Air- and ground wave are also
known as “direct waves” which always occur, independent of soil structure.
In layered soils we can detect further, reflected and refracted wavelets. Reflections occur at
interfaces between soil layers with different dielectric properties. If ε01 > ε02 , a further type
of wave, the so-called refracted wave originate which propagates parallel to the boundary
of the second layer. In addition, combinations of these primary wave types shown in
Figure 6.2 may occur in the radargram which are not discussed here.
29
Figure 6.1: Ground penetrating radar measurement principle
Figure 6.2: Travel paths of different GPR wave types in a two-layer soil with different
relative permittivities.
The signals of the various emitted wavelets reach the receiving antenna at different times.
Plotting the recorded amplitudes as a function of time results in a so-called “trace”.
Figure 6.3 shows a trace which consists of air wave, ground wave and reflected wave.
In a standard GPR measurement, the antennas are pulled along the survey track while
traces are triggered at a fixed interval by a measurement wheel which is connected to the
back of the antenna. This results in a series of traces which are finally displayed by the
measurement software as a function of position and time in a so-called radargram.
30
6.1 Measurement Principle
Figure 6.3: GPR trace. Note, that a wavelet always consists of a number of “wiggles”
which are displayed in the radargram as a series of lines (e.g. red-blue-red)
Figure 6.4: (a) Origin of a radargram. Amplitudes which excess a pre-defined positive or
negative threshold are displayed in color. In this example negative amplitudes
are shown in blue while positive amplitudes are displayed in red; modified
after (Reynolds, 1997) (b) Example radargram.
31
Figure 6.5: Construction and dimensions of an IDS antenna box (200 MHz)
Figure 6.6: Common Offset
6.2 Measurement System
A GPR measurement system consists of a transmitter and a receiver antenna and a control
unit (see Figure ??). In the system applied in this practical course both antennas are
placed in one box. The dimensions of these box are given in Figure 6.5.
The main part of the GPR system is the control unit which generates the GPR signal and
also receives the signals after their passage through the ground. The complete system is
computer controlled. The measurement wheel at the back of the antenna box measures
the distance along the survey track and triggers the emittance of the electromagnetic
pulses.
6.3 Measurement Setups
6.3.1 Common Offset (CO)
Common Offset is the simplest an most widespread GPR measurement technique. In
this setup transmitter and receiver antennas are moved along the survey track while the
distance between both antennas is kept constant throughout the whole survey. Electromagnetic pulses are emitted at equidistant intervals which are controlled by the survey
wheel. With this measurement technique one can efficiently and fast obtain information
From the measured travel time t of the reflected electromagnetic signal one can determine
32
6.3 Measurement Setups
the depth d of a horizontal reflector Figure 6.6
r
a 2 √
2
s=2· d +
= 4d2 + a2 ,
2
(6.1)
where a is the distance between transmitting and receiving antenna. Assuming a homogeneous medium the travel time is determined by
√
s
4d2 + a2
t= =
.
(6.2)
√c
v
0
ε
If the depth of the reflector is known, the relative permittivity can be determined which
finally allows the calculation of the average volumetric water content of this layer via the
CRIM formula (equation 4.3). However, usually the depth of the reflecting interface is
not known. Hence, a CO measurement usually provides too less information for a thorough estimation of soil water content. At least it needs to be completed by independent
information obtained from boreholes or soil profiles or by a so-called common-midpoint
measurement which is described in the following section.
Multi Offset: Common Midpoint and Wide Angle Reflection and Refraction
In a common-midpoint measurement (CMP) transmitter and receiver are moved away
from each other in equidistant steps (see Figure 6.7). At each position a trace is measured.
This way, the reflected signal can be measured using a number of different angles. The
resulting radargram displays the travel time as a function of the antenna separation (see
Figure 6.8).
Since air and ground wave travel directly between the transmitting and receiving antenna,
there is a linear relationship between the travel time t of each wave and the antenna
separation a with the constant of proportionality v1 :
a
,
(6.3)
v
with v = c for the air wave and v = √cε0 for the ground wave. Due to their different
velocities the slopes of both direct waves in the travel time diagram are different.
t=
Consequently, the propagation velocity v of the GPR wave through the soil can be determined directly from the radargram by estimating the slope of the ground wave. Using
(3.18) one obtains the average relative permittivity and with (4.3) also the average volumetric water content. Since the ground wave travels near the soil-air interface it covers
that soil section which is for example important for plant growth. The air wave travel
time is usually applied during data processing as reference for calculating absolute travel
times.
From a CMP measurement one can determine the reflector depth below the midpoint
between the transmitting and the receiving antenna: the relation between travel time t
reflector depth d is given by Equation 6.1.
33
Figure 6.7: Common Midpoint
From the reflection hyperbolas displayed in the travel time diagram relative permittivity
and reflector depth can be determined independently. Plotting the measured data in a
t2 -a2 -diagram, leads to a linear relationship between t and a:
t2 =
1 2 4h2
a + 2 .
v2
v
(6.4)
The propagation velocity of the electromagnetic wave can now be directly determined from
the slope of line. The depth of the reflector can be directly inferred from the intersection
of the line with the y-axis.
In contrast to a CMP measurement, in a Wide Angle Reflection and Refraction (WARR)
measurement (Figure 6.9) only the transmitting or receiving antenna is moved along the
measurement line while the other antenna stays stationary.
In principle, a WARR measurement follows the same relationships concerning travel time
as a CMP measurement. The difference is that the reflection point moves along the
34
6.3 Measurement Setups
Figure 6.9: Wide Angle Reflection and Refraction
Figure 6.10: Antenna System
reflector. This is why a WARR measurement strictly is only applicable in the presence of
horizontal or only slightly sloping reflectors and material properties are homogeneous.
In summary, CMP and WARR measurements provide more information than a CO measurement. The drawback of these techniques is the high measurement effort since both
procedures only provide point information for a specific location. Hence, both methods
are hardly applicable along long measurement lines.
6.3.2 Multi-channel GPR
In order to be able to conduct a measurement with acceptable effort and acquire almost
as much information as in a series of CMP or WARR measurements, Gerhards (2008)
developed a multi-channel GPR measurement technique. This new method combines the
traditional CO and CMP measurement techniques. In this setup at least two standard
GPR units, each consisting of a transmitting and a receiving antenna are coupled in a
row at a fixed distance and are moved along the survey track (Figure 6.10). The multichannel unit is able to acquire data from all available transmitter-receiver combinations.
In the example given in Figure 6.10 this leads to four measurement channels which can
be used to record common-offset radargrams simultaneously but with different antenna
separations. The survey is almost as fast as a standard common-offset measurement with
only one single antenna system.
35
In a setup build of two antenna systems the four available channels can, e.g., be combined
as follows:
Channel 1 transmitter 1 combined with receiver 1 (T1R1)
Channel 2 transmitter 2 combined with receiver 2 (T2R2)
Channel 3 transmitter 1 combined with receiver 2 (T1R2)
Here, channels 1 and 2 use the standard common offset antenna separation a1 = a2 =
const. The antenna separations for channels 3 and 4 (a3 , a4 ) can be selected by the
operator (Figure 6.10).
The optimal antenna separation is
aopt = √
2h
.
ε0 − 1
(6.5)
If no information about the measurement site is available one usually uses the rule of
thumb aopt = 0, 2 h, where h is the desired penetration depth.
From a multi-channel GPR measurement it is possible to effectively estimate reflector
depth h and relative permittivity ε0 with minimal effort. The information can subsequently
be used to determine the average volumetric soil moisture content θ using the CRIM
formula (Equation 4.3). Here, at least two absolute travel times are required for one
distinct measurement position.
1
h=
2
s
ε=
t2i a2j − t2j a2i
t2j − t2i
c2 t2i
4h2 + a2i
(6.6)
(6.7)
A multi-channel GPR measurement is kind of a moving mini-CMP measurement: The
radargrams 1 and 2 (Figure 6.10) are shifted laterally such that the measurement points
are consistent with those of channels 3 and 4. This way, one obtains three measurements
at one single location with different antenna separations.
In order to obtain absolute values for relative permittivity and reflector depth, also absolute travel times are required which are initially not known from a radargram. Due to
experimental difficulties, each radargram has an unknown offset which, however, can be
determined from the theoretical travel time of the air wave tair using
a
= t − tof f .
(6.8)
c
Here, tof f is the unknown offset which has to be determined from the radargrams. It can
be calculated from the travel time of the air wave at antenna separation a = 0. However,
tair =
36
6.4 Energy Loss and Penetration Depth
since it is practically impossible to measure the travel time at this distance, one has to find
a different way to retrieve this value. For the measurement we consider here, this offset
can be determined from a calibration measurement as shown in figure ?? (How? ). After
performing the offset correction (equation 6.8) it is possible to quantitatively analyze the
6.4 Energy Loss and Penetration Depth
As already mentioned in section 3.1.4, the electromagnetic signal is attenuated by different processes on its way through the soil. Figure 6.11 gives an overview of the different
processes that lead to a reduction of signal strength.
The largest amount of energy loss results from damping of free charge carrier movement.
Under the assumptions made for equation 3.18, the material dependent attenuation is
induced by the direct current electric conductivity σdc of the investigated medium. Depending on the traveled distance x the amplitude E of the electromagnetic wave decreases
exponential with respect to its starting value E0 :
E(x) = E0 e−βx
(6.9)
For the loss constant β one obtains after the above mentioned simplifications
β=
σdc
√ .
2 c0 ε 0 ε 0
(6.10)
The higher σdc of the medium, the higher is the attenuation of the electromagnetic wave.
In soils, electrical conductivity for example increases due to an increase in soil moisture
content, clay content or amount of dissolved solutes in the soil solution.
The penetration depth of the electromagnetic wave
δ=
1
β
(6.11)
reduces with increasing electrical conductivity of the medium. For salt water the penetration depth is only δsaltwater = 1 cm.
In addition, so-called spherical losses occur which are caused by the field geometry of
the measurement. The energy density is reduced due to geometrical spreading with the
inverse of the square of the traveled path.
Scattering and diffraction of the electromagnetic energy at objects whose dimensions are
in the same order of magnitude as the wavelength of the incident electromagnetic wave
(Mie scattering) lead to a redirection of the energy which then cannot be registered any
more by the receiving antenna.
37
Figure 6.11: Processes that lead to reduction in signal strength (Reynolds, 1997)
Energy losses are also induced as a consequence of reflection and transmission losses
during each passage through a boundary. The transmitted fractions cannot be registered
anymore by the receiving antenna. Due to the missing coupling of the antennas to the
ground part of the energy is lost into space. These losses can be summarized as boundary
losses.
6.5 Signal Resolution
The successful detection of underground objects or structures is primarily restricted by the
resolution of the measurement. This is the ability to distinguish two nearby structures or
signals which are temporally close to each other. For the spatial resolution the wavelength
λ of the electromagnetic signal is relevant. Are two reflectors separated by more than half
a wavelength ( λ2 ) they are usually well distinguishable in a radargram. Under very good
conditions, the signal resolution can reduce to about one fourth of wavelength ( λ4 ). From
the relationship of the propagation velocity v with the wavelength λ and the frequency
f : λ = fv it is obvious that the smaller the wavelength and the higher the frequency, the
higher is also the spatial resolution of the measurement. As mentioned in section 6.4 a
higher frequency leads to a shallower penetration depth. Hence, when planning a survey
one always has to find am optimal setup for a potentially high penetration depth together
with a high resolution of underground structures. Sometimes it is preferable to choose a
38
6.6 Concluding Remarks
deeper penetration depth and a lower resolution if deeper situated structures are to be
investigated.
After equation 3.18 an electromagnetic wave travels slower in a wet soil than in a dry soil
due to their difference in relative permittivity. This causes that structures can usually be
resolved better in wet soils than in dry ones. Contrary, the signal attenuation is higher
in wet materials which usually reduces the penetration depth is these measurements.
6.6 Concluding Remarks
GPR is one of the most often applied geophysical measurement techniques. A great
advantage is the good applicability under most field conditions. Common offset and
multi-channel measurements are fast and allow to efficiently and non-invasively explore
large areas at scales ranging from several tens of meters up to a few kilometers. GPR is
best suited for taking measurements in low loss materials like sand or gravel since they
are well penetrable by radio waves. In fine textured soils like clay or loam or in soils with
high electrical conductivity GPR is less applicable since the signals are attenuated too
strongly.
39
40
7 Site Introduction: ASSESS-GPR
The experiments of this field course are conducted at our experimental field site ASSESSGPR. This artificial testbed has been built into a former drive-in fodder silo close to
Heidelberg in June 2010. Its main purpose is to facilitate the understanding of hydraulic
soil processes and further state-of-the-art GPR measurement and modeling methods. The
following site description is taken from Klenk (2012).
7.1 Construction and basic characteristics
Some pictures taken before and during the construction process can be found in figure 7.3.
The testbed is about 20 m long, 4 m wide and approximately 1.9 m deep. Its total surface
area has been estimated to 79.94 m2 . The concrete bottom and walls of the structure
have been sealed by adding a sturdy polyethylene foil (see picture in figure 7.3c). A
complicated but well-defined quasi-2D architecture was designed as a part of the diploma
work of Antz (2010). This design features three distinct kinds of sand with a gravel layer
of about 0.1 m thickness at the bottom. A sketch of this subsurface architecture can be
found in figure 7.1. As can be seen in this sketch, there are regions of different complexity
with respect to the soil water dynamics and the expected GPR signal evaluation. Ordered
by increasing complexity, the following regions can be distinguished:
• a two-layer region (16 m . . . 20 m)
• several three-layer regions, in part with swapped layering of the materials (0 m . . . 2 m
vs. 7 m . . . 10 m and 12 m . . . 14 m)
• regions with slanted (2 m . . . 7 m) and converging reflectors (14 m . . . 16 m)
• and, most distinctively, a synclinal structure (10 m . . . 12 m)
Since the bottom and the wall of the whole structure have been sealed, precipitation will
accumulate at the bottom, leading to a rising water table over time. During normal operations of the test site, the water table is kept at depths between -1.6 and -1 m by pumping
water out of the observation well which is located at approximately 18.4 m. If desired,
the pumping well can also be used for artificially raising the water table through imbibition. The high saturated conductivity of the additional gravel layer at the bottom of the
structure is to equally distribute imbibition or drainage fluxes along the lower boundary
during our experiments.
41
7 Site Introduction: ASSESS-GPR
0.2
0
−0.2
A
depth [m]
−0.4
−0.6
−0.8
B
−1
P4
P3
25
26
27
18
19
28
29
−1.4
C
−1.6
C
4
5
12
17
1
6
13 9
2
7
14
31
23
B
15
16
24
−1.8
2
3
11
22
32
0
P1
10
20
21
30
−1.2
P2
4
6
8
10
Position [m]
12
A
8
14
16
18
Figure 7.1: Sketch of the structure of the ASSESS-GPR test site. Thick black lines denote
layer boundaries between the differently shaded materials, the dashed black
lines known compaction interfaces within the same material. TDR sensors are
indicated by red dots.
During the building process, the sand was carefully added layer by layer. To ensure the
stability of the boundary layers, the sand was compacted with a vibrating machine after
each layer addition. Due to the thickness of the different layers, the sand also had to be
compacted several times within the same layer, leading to distinct compaction interfaces.
The position of some of these compaction interfaces has been explicitly determined; those
interfaces are illustrated by the dashed black lines in figure 7.1. The porosity change over
these compaction interfaces can give rise to a reflection of the GPR signal, depending on
the hydraulic state of the site.
The boundary conditions (e.g. precipitation, air temperatures, water table position) are
measured on-site by an automated weather station (see Antz (2010) for details). In particular, 32 TDR sensors have been placed in four separate profiles as indicated by the red
dots in figure 7.1.
During spring and summer 2015, the ASSESS site has been outfitted with a motorized
measurement system which is simply called ”field scanner” in the following. This field
scanner comprises a measurement bridge which can move automatically up and down
the ASSESS site. On this bridge, the antennas can be fixed in several positions allowing
the automated acquisition of common offset measurements with differing antenna separations, at different polarizations as well as acquiring CMP measurements automatically
at different positions along the ASSESS site.
7.2 Exemplary GPR measurement
A typical example of a multi common offset GPR measurement under quasi-equilibrium
conditions (acquired at an antenna box separation of 1.3 m after a dry-spell of approximately four weeks) is shown in figure 7.2. For facilitating the visibility of subsurface
structures, the direct wave has been clipped for the two internal channels (INT1 and
42
7.3 Previous studies at ASSESS-GPR
10
20
30
travel time [ns]
40
50 INT1 a = 0.14 m
INT2 a = 0.14 m
10
20
30
40
50 SCBC a = 1.16 m
0
2
4
6
LCBC a = 1.44 m
8
10
12
14
16 0
2
4
6
8
10
12
14
16
position [m]
Figure 7.2: Exemplary four channel measurement of the whole ASSESS-GPR site acquired
at November 28th 2011 after a long dry spell. Channel designations and the
corresponding antenna separations are indicated in each radargram. Channels
one and two denote the two internal channels, three and four the long and short
crossbox channel, respectively.
INT2). In general, the reflections generated by the subsurface interfaces are clearly distinguishable. Most prominent features include the layer boundary between sands B and C,
especially including the reflection signal generated by the synclinal structure at 8. . . 10 m.
At travel times between 38 and 50 ns, two continuous reflections can be discerned. The
first, fainter reflection is most likely generated by the transition to the gravel layer while
the second, more prominent reflection is generated by the concrete bottom. Furthermore, there is a comparatively weak horizontal reflection arriving at travel times around
22 ns. This reflection is essentially generated by the top of the capillary fringe and the
corresponding transition zone above the water table.
7.3 Previous studies at ASSESS-GPR
In recent years, a series of diploma, master and PhD theses have been carried out in
connection to the ASSESS site:
The design and the construction process of the ASSESS-GPR site were a part of the
43
7 Site Introduction: ASSESS-GPR
diploma thesis of Antz (2010).
The water content measurements recorded by the TDR probes have been the basis for the
recent diploma work of Jaumann (2012), focusing on the estimation of effective hydraulic
parameters for the ASSESS-GPR structure. The current best result of an effective parameter set calculated in a recent inversion based on that work are reported in Table 7.1.
A first GPR related study at the ASSESS-GPR site was carried out by Kühne (2010),
analyzing the temporal variability of soil water content as measured with multichannel
GPR between June and September 2010. Subsequently, this analysis was extended by
another time-series measured between December 2010 and April 2011 in the framework
of the thesis of Bogda (2011), focusing on optimizing the measurement setup for the multichannel analysis. GPR data acquired at the ASSESS-GPR site have been the basis for
the novel inversion approach for surface GPR data which has been presented by Buchner
et al. (2012).
The well-controllable nature of the ASSESS-GPR site provides excellent conditions for
studying the GPR response to different hydraulic states of a field site. Such different
hydraulic states can be simulated by varying the water table through imbibition and
drainage into and from the structure at the observation well. A first description of the
GPR response to experiments with fluctuating water tables has been recently provided by
Seegers (2012). These experiments were also the foundation for the diploma thesis of Dagenbach (2012), who performed a detailed numerical analysis of the GPR response to the
transition zone above the capillary fringe. Comparing the time-lapse measurements acquired during the experiments to the results of numerical simulations, an appropriate soil
hydraulic parametrization has been identified by Dagenbach et al. (2012). Keicher (2013)
carried out a series of GPR measurements at the ASSESS site for detailed investigation
of the precision and accuracy of our instruments. Most recently, this was expanded upon
by Piepenbreier (2015), focusing on detailed investigations of amplitude and frequency
behavior of different GPR signals recorded at the ASSESS site.
Table 7.1: Effective Brooks-Corey Parameters for the three sands used at ASSESS-GPR,
based on the results by Jaumann (2012).
h0 [m]
λ
Ks [cm h−1 ]
τ
θs
θr
A −0.1621 ± 0.0003 1.40 ± 0.02
30.7 ± 0.1
0.01 ± 0.01 0.3819 ± 0.0002 0.0353 ± 0.0006
−0.0585 ± 0.0002 3.74 ± 0.04
9.17 ± 0.02
0.05 ± 0.01 0.3494 ± 0.0003 0.0516 ± 0.0002
B
C
−0.0961 ± 0.0002 1.35 ± 0.01
44
461 ± 6
1.07 ± 0.01 0.3198 ± 0.0002 0.0340 ± 0.0004
7.4 Alternate field site: Grenzhof
7.4 Alternate field site: Grenzhof
In case the ASSESS site is unavailable for practical course measurements, the experiments
will be conducted on an alternate field site close by, which is called the ”Grenzhof–site”.
This is a stretch of formerly agriculturally used land which our group has been leasing
continuously for the last 15 years. The site is equipped with an automated weather station. Several soil profiles have been instrumented with TDR and soil temperature probes
measuring continuous time-series for over a decade. Experiments we have been carrying
out at this site were aimed at understanding the nature soil water and contaminant flow
in the vadose zone as well as the energy balance at the soil-atmosphere boundary. Before
the ASSESS site had been built, most of our development of GPR methods have been
taking place here as well.
45
7 Site Introduction: ASSESS-GPR
(a) ASSESS-GPR site before construction.
View towards start of GPR profiles
(b) ASSESS-GPR after smoothing of the
ground. View towards end of GPR profiles
(c) ASSESS-GPR after installation of the pond
liner
(d) ASSESS-GPR during construction
(e) GPR measurements during imbibition and
drainage experiments
(f) GPR measurements during imbibition and
drainage experiments
Figure 7.3: Pictures from the ASSESS-GPR site. The top row shows the structure before, the middle row during construction. The bottom row shows the GPR
measurement process during the imbibition and drainage experiments similar
to what we will be conducting in the framework of this field course.
46
8 Experiments
8.1 Structure and aims of the experiments
The main goal of the taking part in the experiments of this field course is to achieve a
thorough understanding of the principles and applications of two geophysical measurement
methods that have found wide-spread use for determining soil moisture contents.
The usual practical course comprises two parts:
For part A, TDR measurements are executed in the laboratory at the Institute of Environmental Physics. The aim of this part is to record and interpret reflected signals of
electromagnetic waves in several media under different conditions.
Measurements for the part B will be carried out at one of our test sites in the vicinity
of Heidelberg, where you will head together with your supervisor on the second day. At
that site, several different GPR measurement methods will be used. Since July 2015 this
will normally be the ASSESS site, as described in detail in chapter 7. Also, some TDR
measurements may be recorded for comparison. The evaluation of all these measurements
and their comparison fill the third day of this practical course.
Please be advised that you are handling scientific equipment which is worth
about 100.000 e. Servicing a broken GPR connecting cable costs us about
500 e. The TDR100 device costs around 4000 e to replace due to the expensive
high frequency generator. In light of these numbers, please execute extreme
caution while handling the instruments.
Especially if you are executing measurements with the new field scanner on
the ASSESS site, utmost care is to be taken, as there are not all software
based security checks in place yet. Not paying attention will most definitively
lead to potentially very expensive screw-ups. If anything seems to be difficult
to put together, ALWAYS stop and ask.
8.2 Guiding questions
Before starting with the experiments you should at least be able to answer the following
questions:
Theoretical Questions
47
8 Experiments
• How do electromagnetic waves propagate in matter? What parameters are needed
to describe this propagation?
• Which processes lead to energy dissipation of an electromagnetic wave propagating
in a certain medium?
• Which regions of the electromagnetic spectrum are used for measuring relative permittivities and why?
• How and why can one determine soil water content from relative permittivity?
• What are the basic principles of Time Domain Reflectometry? How can relative
permittivities be determined from TDR measurements?
• What are the fundamental principles of Ground-penetrating Radar? How can GPR
measurements be employed for determining relative permittivities?
Practical Questions
• What kind of different methods for GPR measurements are there and what are the
• Which quantities can be determined by the different GPR measurements?
• With which method can the temporal offset tair (equation 6.8) be measured for the
different channels?
• What are the similarities and differences between GPR and TDR based measurements?
48
8.3 Laboratory measurements using TDR
8.3 Laboratory measurements using TDR
As stated above, the first part of the experiments will be carried out in the laboratory at
the Institute for Environmental Physics and will mainly deal with TDR measurements.
8.3.1 Basics: Performing TDR measurements
The TDR measurements in this practical course are acquired using a TDR100 instrument
(see fig. 8.1), manufactured by Campbell Scientific Inc. This TDR100 instrument is a
computer controlled reflectometer, where the program PCTDR is used for data acquisition. This program also allows for a graphical representation of the reflected signal.
For getting started, please execute the following steps:
1. Connect the TDR100 to the measurement laptop via the com-port.
2. Connect the TDR100 to the battery. Please use the respective power cord. Caution!
Ensure using the right polarity when connecting the plugs (black plug =
ˆ negative
polarity).
3. Boot the measurement laptop, just klick on ok if asked for a password.
4. Open the data acquisition program PCTDR via the link provided on the desktop.
At first you should get thoroughly acquainted with the measurement setup. To this end,
please connect one of the provided TDR-sensors to the TDR100, activate the button
continuous update and start a measurement.
Figure 8.1: The TDR100 instrument
You should now conduct a first qualitative analysis of the form of the signal in different
media – like air, water or sand. Print out at least one TDR trace in air and one in water
49
8 Experiments
8.3.2 Calibration of TDR sensors
For a quantitative analysis (which you are not obliged to do, a qualitative analysis is
sufficient) of all subsequent measurements, the TDR sensors would have to be to be
calibrated first.
This would be achieved by recording two-way traveltimes (compare chapter 5.2) of the
signal in at least two different media with different but well defined permittivities, which
allows to associate every measured travel time uniquely with the respective permittivity
based on equation 5.1. The best way for TDR calibration here is to use water and air, as
these two media can be considered to represent the two extreme cases for moisture content
in natural soils. Normally, you would record five traces (why more than one? ) in air and
and then five more completely submerged in completely desalinated water (VE-Wasser ).
However, since you will not use the provided sensor for quantitative measurements in the
field, you can resort to just recording one trace in air and one in desalinated water. Make
sure, that the whole trace is visible in the window of PCTDR. If this is not the case,
From what you know about measuring water content with TDR sensors, would you need
to record any further parameters for achieving a quantitative water content value?
As you are not obliged to do a quantitative analysis of the TDR measurements1 , it is
sufficient if you just record the trace in air and in desalinated water and explain the form
and the reasons for the differences.
8.3.3 Measurement: TDR signals from a sand column
In this part of the experiment, the provided TDR sensor will be used to qualitatively
measure different water contents in an approximately 40 cm high sand column (if you use
a TDR sensor with 0.3 m length), the according experimental setup is pictured in figure
8.2. The water table in this sand column can be tuned to different heights, therefore
inducing different water contents which can be measured with a TDR sensor.
At first, insert the provided TDR sensor with 30 cm rod length vertically into the initially
dry soil column. Please take extra care not to introduce any air gaps along the rods
while inserting the sensor, as this will severely impair the measurement and could yield
completely worthless results. Please ensure that the PCTDR-window shows the complete
signal over the whole measurement process2 . You may start tuning the PCTDR-window
using the following parameters: start: 3.0, length: 5.0. Be aware that this window
depends on the length of the probe and the cable.
Then the water table is to be risen slowly from the bottom of the soil column until the
water level is approximately 5 cm below the surface. This can be done by adjusting the
height of the water container. Hanging the water container higher will raise the water
1
2
This implies the calculation of the soil water content from the measured TDR trace.
Record one trace in water and one in air to evaluate the extreme cases.
50
8.3 Laboratory measurements using TDR
Figure 8.2: Overview of the measurement setup for the soil column
table in the column due to the increase of hydrostatic pressure. Record one TDR trace
after every rise of the water table of 5 cm or approximately every 2 minutes. The final
trace should be recorded after the saturation front in the column is approximately 5 cm
below the surface and the system has been equilibrating for approximately 15 minutes.
Then, establish the water level to the 2 cm above the top of the porous plate at the lower
end of the sand column, so that the water can slowly flow back out of the column. Again,
record one TDR-trace after every 2 minutes.
Make sure that you stop the outflow of the water before the porous plate at the bottom
of the sand column runs dry!
After finishing your experiments, get the TDR sensor out of the sand column and put
the wet sand in an appropriate box with the help of your tutor. Be reminded that you
are working in a laboratory. Please clean it accordingly. No grain of sand must be on the
tables and the floor has to be swept at minimum! You will find scoop and brush below
the wash basin.
Guiding Questions:
• Give three difference between the recorded traces in air and in water.
• Describe the expected changes, if you would measure with different TDR probes
(feel encouraged to do so).
51
8 Experiments
• Sketch the expected water content distribution over the height of the column over
time for the whole experiment.
• Describe the expected traces you will measure.
Remarks on the expected evaluation
The following evaluation of your measurement data is expected:
1. Plot the measured traces for water and air in one figure. Please shift them such
that the reflection at the probe head is at the same position. You may also measure
with different TDR probes and explain the differences in the measurement data.
2. Plot all the measured traces during the rise of the water table in the sand column in
one figure. Please use different colors for each trace. It is suggested to use ascending
colors with measurement time3 .
3. Create the same plot for the drainage part of the experiment.
8.3.4 Measurement: Assessing the Influence of conductivity
As has been described in section 5.3, the shape of the TDR signal is influenced by the
electric conductivity of the measured medium along the TDR sensor rods. In this part,
this influence is to be qualitatively assessed. To get a feeling for this effect, a set of TDR
traces is to be recorded in water exhibiting different salt concentrations as follows:
1. Fill a bucket with 20 l of completely desalinated water.
2. Connect a TDR sensor with 20 cm rod length to the TDR100 and adjust the following settings of the PCTDR software under the menu waveform: start = -2.00,
length = 202.00.
3. Record the TDR signal when the sensor is held vertically in the bucket.
4. Then successively add 2 g of salt to the bucket, stir thoroughly until complete
dissolution and record a TDR trace afterwards, until a total of 10 g have been
dissolved. You should have recorded six TDR traces for this part of the experiment.
3
You could choose e.g., 0 min → red, 2 min → orange, 4 min → yellow, 6 min → green, . . . .
52
8.4 Field measurements
8.4 Field measurements
Under normal circumstances, the field experiments will be executed at the ASSESS testsite
close to Heidelberg. In July 2015, the ASSESS site has been outfitted by a field scanner.
You will be among the very first to actually use this system for acquiring GPR data.
Hence, again: Please take utmost care in handling the system.
As the field scanner has just been installed and is still being tested, the specific type of
measurements which we can execute will be determined dynamically and is subject to
weather conditions.
As a prerequesite, please be prepared to answer / discuss the following aspects of these
experiments. There may be no right or wrong answer, but most of these questions are
exactly the questions we have to ask ourselves when designing our own experiments:
• What would you expect to be able to learn from a single GPR measurement at the
ASSESS site about the properties of the subsurface?
• In principle, what could we - provided a perfect measurement setup - learn more
about subsurface hydraulics by monitoring subsurface hydraulic dynamics?
• What is the additional information we can gain from CMP measurements with
respect to common offset data?
• How would you decide on an appropriate antenna separation?
• We have different instruments available. Specifically, we have access to GPR instruments with center frequencies of 100, 200, 400, and 500 MHz als well as to dual
frequency antennas with centerfrequencies of 200 and 600 MHz. If you could decide
for a specific instrument - given the dimensions of the field site and the nature of
these experiments - which instrument would you pick? For supporting your decision,
please calculate the dominating wave lengths for the respective frequencies for (i)
wet soil (θ ≈ 0.2 and (ii) dry soil (theta ≈ 0.05).
• What is more desirable: High temporal resolution but less spatial coverage or more
extended spatial coverage at the expense of lower temporal resolution?
8.4.2 Measurements you will need for evaluation
If everything works as planned, please make sure to have recorded at least the following
measurements and copied them somewhere for your specific evaluation:
53
8 Experiments
• Two eight channel, common offset measurements along the long axis of the ASSESS
site recorded at the same polarization with two different antenna separations.
• A third common offset measurement recorded with one of the two previous antenna
separations but differing polarization.
• Three different CMP measurements recorded at characteristic locations along the
ASSESS site. At least one of them should be coincide with the location of one of
the preinstalled profiles of TDR sensors.
• Made a readout of today’s weather station data, especially including the TDR measured water contents.
For evaluation purposes, please make sure that you
• have made a detailed sketch of every antenna setup you have been using. Note down
the serial numbers of antennas and cables and note the direction the antennas have
been facing.
• have measured and noted all employed antenna separations during CO measurements as well as the initial antenna separations for CMPs.
• have noted the starting and end points of the COs as well as the locations and
shotpoints of CMPs.
• have noted the transmitter-receiver sequence for the channels as displayed in the
measurement software K2fastwave.
54
9 Evaluation
The evaluation of the experiments carried out in this practical course should at least
include a detailed treatment of the the following points.
9.1 Evaluation of the TDR measurements
9.1.1 Qualitative description of TDR signals
Describe the qualitative characteristics of the TDR signal and its shape when measured
in different media. Discuss in detail the traces acquired in air and water. What are the
key differences and similarities and how can they be explained?
9.1.2 TDR signals from the sand column
Graphically represent the TDR traces while the water gauge in the sand column was on
the rise. Discuss the changes of the signal characteristics. Determine the water content
from measurements while the gauge was on the rise and on the fall. Plot the respective
water contents vs. the according heights of the water gauge. What conclusions can be
drawn from this diagram?
9.1.3 Assessing the influence of conductivity
Plot all recorded traces into a joint diagram and label each signal accordingly. What is the
influence of increasing electrical conductivity on the shape of the TDR signal? What is
the maximum salt concentration at which water contents could still be safely calculated?
How would you go about extracting quantitative information on electrical conductivity
from this data. Would a two-point-calibration suffice?
55
9 Evaluation
9.1.4 TDR field data
Please calculate the water content distribution of the ASSESS site as measured at the
day of your field measurements by the automated weather station. For details on how to,
please ask. If you should come up with one single average water content for the whole
profile, how do you have to average these TDR-derived water content values?
9.2 Evaluation of the GPR field measurements
GPR data are evaluated by a dedicated software package ”MatlabGPR” which is a matlab
based class of different methods. For each evaluation step we provide you with a dedicated
script which you may use and adjust at will.
9.2.1 Evaluation of measured data
Please copy all measurement data into the following subfolder of your current home folder,
replacing the ”YYMMDD” with the appropriate date of your field experiment:
”∼/YYMMDD/fielddata/0 data/<YYMMDD>.MIS/LID acq1”. (
• one 8-Channel CO measurement recorded with normal polarization setup
• a corresponding second 8-Channel CO measurement recorded with the same normal
polarization setup but a different antenna separation
• three 8-Channel CO measurements recorded with the same antenna separation but
in different polarizations: (i) normal polarization (transverse electric mode setup),
(ii) endfire polarization (transverse magnetic mode setup) (iii) cross-polarized mode.
All selected profiles should be either measured from 0 to 19 m or in reverse direction.
Furthermore, each group should select three CMP profiles you have recorded, at least one
of which should coincide with one of the preinstalled TDR sensor profiles on the site.
All matlab scripts you will be using for evaluation can be found in the folder:
”∼/YYMMDD/fielddata/1 matlab/”.
56
9.2 Evaluation of the GPR field measurements
Overall data interpretation - common offset
• First, plot all radargrams from your chosen 8-CH CO measurements (both polarizations, two antenna separations), as well as the 8-CH radargrams from all three of
your CMP measurements using the script ”Script1 plot 8CH.m”. This should yield
five plots, which are saved into the folder ”3 plots”.
If you want to look at more details from a single channel radargram with minimal
evaluation effort, consider using the script ”Script0 quickplot 1CHCO.m”, plotting a
single radargram into a file. Another way for looking at details more closely is using
the script ”Script1b plot 1CH wtraces.m”, which allows you to plot a number of
radargrams (which you put into the variable ”GPRfiles”) with extra traces alongside
it.
• For the normally polarized CO measurement, answer the following questions:
– Which channel has been measuring at which frequency?
– Which channels are internal or crossbox channels?
– You know the TR sequence from the measurement software and the antenna
box setup you used during the measurements. Can you decide the layout of
the antennas? Which channels have the longest antenna separations? Given
separations (600 MHz antennas: aint = 0.09 m, 200 MHz antennas: aint =
0.23 m, what are the antenna separations for each channel? You will need
these values for calculating water contents from the evaluation of the bottom
reflection in these radargrams later on! Also, the CMP evaluation depends
on knowing the correct initial antenna separation. If you are not sure of your
– Compare the three measurements acquired at different polarizations. What
kind of differences should you expect? Do you see any differences? Why?
– Compare the two measurements acquired at different antenna separations.
What kind of differences should you expect? Do you see any differences?
– What kind of signals can you discern from the data? Please identify all layer
reflections, the direct wave and the signal from the capillary fringe above our
water table. Any other interesting features?
– Can you directly estimate the water table depth from observations of the capillary fringe reflection? Make a couple of plots with traces at different positions
(using ”Script1b plot 1CH wtraces.m”), choosing appropriate channels from
your CO measurement and discuss potential differences you may observe for
the capillary fringe reflection in different materials.
57
9 Evaluation
Overall data interpretation - common midpoint data
Use the script ”Script2a quickplot 3CMPs.m” for making two additional plots: (i)
plot channels 5 and 6 for all three of your chosen CMP radargrams and (ii) do the
same for channels 7 and 8.
• For the three CMP measurements, answer the following questions:
– What is the nature of the signals of the first four channels (as plotted in the
– For channels 5-8: what kind of signals can you identify? Have you measured
the air wave / ground wave / layer reflections (how many?) / refracted waves?
– What are the differences observed between your three chosen CMP radargrams? Can you relate these differences to the known subsurface structure of
the ASSESS site?
– How do the signals of the two different frequencies compare in each case?
Evaluation for water content
Furthermore, you should evaluate obtained data for water content:
First, use the script ”Script2b evaluate 3CMPs.m” to fit (i) the direct ground wave and
(ii) the bottom reflection and calculate the respective averaged water contents for your
three chosen CMP measurements. Make sure (i) that you have input the right starting
antenna separation for each channel (”importpars.antsep”) and (ii) that you use the same
feature for picking, at best the central minimum feature (why? ). As before, execute the
script two times, using first channels 5 and 6 and then channels 7 and 8.
Finally, use ”Script3 eval bottomrefl 1CHCO.m” to evaluate the bottom reflection for
each of the eight channels in your originally chosen normal setup CO measurement for
water content. Make sure that you provide the correct antenna separation for each channel. This script assumes a constant depth of the bottom of the ASSESS site of 1.9 m.
In this case, you have to provide the respective air wave travel time for each channel for
time zero correction. Each group should use its own measured radargram containing the
air wave calibration. In the end, you should find eight .mat-files containing both water
content and permittivity in the folder ”2 outputs”. Plot all results for the water contents
into a single diagram and discuss potential differences you find for the different channels.
58
9.2 Evaluation of the GPR field measurements
9.2.2 Comparison between methods and to TDR data
Last but not least, you should discuss and assess the precision and accuracy of the water
content results derived from different methods. First, compare the CO results to the
results obtained by CMP fitting and assess and explain potential differences between the
two methods. Then compare the results to the TDR derived values. Find a way to
efficiently compare the result for the CMPs acquired close to TDR sensor profiles with
the water contents derived from these TDR profiles. How well do the results match? Is
this what you would have expected?
59
9 Evaluation
60
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the natural evaporative boundary forcing on the basis of TDR measurements, Master
thesis, Heidelberg University.
Kaatze, U. (1989), Complex permittivity of water as a function of frequency and temperature, Journal of Chemical and Engeneering Data, 34, 371–374.
Keicher, V. (2013), Quantitative untersuchungen zur stabilität von georadarsignalen bei
messungen von assess-gpr, Master thesis, Universität Heidelberg.
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Ph.D. thesis, Heidelberg University.
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62
A MatlabGPR
A.1 Introduction
This collection of MATLAB functions provides a framework for evaluating Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) data and is optimized for the usage with large radargrams and the
corresponding amount of data.
A.1.1 Software structure
The whole software package is based on object oriented programming in Matlab and as
such structured into different classes. Basis of each evaluation procedure is an instance of
the class ”MatlabGPR”, or one of its derived classes aimed at providing a framework for
a specific evaluation procedure. Currently the following frameworks are predefined:
fk032014evalCO evaluation of CO-data acquired during the March 2014 field course;
GWeval framework for evaluating GPR ground wave data (based on Klenk (2012)).
In cases where you develop a collection of evaluation methods pertaining to a certain
dataset or a method of evaluation which is applied in similar fashion to multiple datasets,
you might consider to expand this list with your own framework derived from the MatlabGPR base class.
Each evaluation object may contain one or more instances of the class ”GPRline” which
in turn can contain one or several objects ”radargram” containing the actual GPR data
and providing corresponding evaluation methods. Hence, in brief:
• An object of the class ”MatlabGPR” provides the overall framework for an evaluation of a GPR dataset;
• a ”GPRline” is the container of several radargram objects which have to share the
same basic datatype (such as ids, mala, pulseEkko, sgy or our own .mdd/.mdh
• an object of the ”radargram” class contains the actual GPR data and provides
63
A MatlabGPR
certain evaluation methods which are applicable to all types of radargrams (such as
a Dewow-filter). Since different types of radargrams differ in some properties and
applicable evaluation methods (e.g. there is no point in using a CMPrad’s function
for direct wave fitting for water content on a common offset radargram), there are
the following derived classes available for specific types of radargrams:
WARR Wide Angle Refraction and Reflection Radargram
• Additionally, an instance of class soil is used for storing information about the
physical entity under investigation (which are, e.g., needed for calculating water
contents from GPR data). Objects of the soil class may also serve as an interface
to other evaluation or modeling codes such as MeepGPR or Muphi to allow, e.g.,
the setup of an inversion scheme of GPR data.
A.1.2 A primer on method names
Over the years, the list of methods for different evaluation purposes has grown increasingly
long. Since MATLAB does not alow the usage of subfolders within class structures, the
following scheme for naming methods in a consistent way has been followed for clarity,
starting method names with the following capitalized keywords:
FILT Filter methods which modify directly the imported radargram’s amplitude data
(”rad.amp data”), such as dewow, amplification, normalization of amplitude data;
PROC Basic processing methods, also operating directly on the original GPR data, such
as shifting, flipping or clipping of radargrams;
for picking certain radargram features or calculating an evaluation result which is
PLOT All methods concerned with graphical output;
AUX Auxiliary functions which are not directly pertaining to a certain class object (such
as certain picking functionality, setting up different figure environments or storing
output.
the functionality of this software package with your own methods. Try to refrain from
capitalizing any other letters in your function name except for abbreviations such as CMP
or WARR.
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A.2 Hands on!
A.1.3 Disclaimer
This software is pure research code and as such by definition still buggy. MatlabGPR is
licensed free of charge. Therefore all the files which in their entirety constitute MatlabGPR
are provided ”as is”, without any warranty of any kind, whether expressed or implied.
You are responsible for ascertaining the fitness of MatlabGPR for any specific use and
consequently you assume all the responsibilities and cost that may arise from using it.
This Matlab package has been created by the Soil Physics Group of the Institute of
Environmental Physics, Heidelberg University, Germany (2013). For further information,
Main authors so far have been Patrick Klenk ([email protected]),Jens
Buchner, and Katja Bigge. Some of the code is based on previous C/C++ based evaluation algorithms authored by Holger Gerhards, Felix Heimann, Kurt Roth and others
(specifically the PG/PiG/PickniG package).
This Matlab package does furthermore rely on some third party functionality which has
been downloaded from the mathworks exchange servers. These functions can be found in
the ./Z thirdpartyscripts folder and are subject to their respective licenses.
The import function for IDS radar data ”IDS2Dread.m” is subject to a nondisclosure agreement with Ingeneria dei Sistemi, Italy. and is only to be used
from group members. If you pass along any part of this code, you have to
exclude this function or contact IDS first.
A.2 Hands on!
In order to facilitate the understanding and usage of certain evaluation procedures the
MatlabGPR collection of functions includes a number of well-documented exemplary
scripts in the sub-folder ./Z cookbook. Currently, these include:
CB freqeval 1CH.m
CB freqeval 4CH.m
CB FS multiCMPs evaluate.m
CB FS quickplot 1CHCO.m
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CB FS singleCMPs evaluate.m
CB FS singleCMPs plot results.m
CB gweval inklfreqeval.m
CB import plot output mdd.m
CB load plot 1CH with2traces mala.m
CB mddWARRs 2D3Dconversion.m
CB quickplot 1CHCO.m
In order to get somewhat acquainted with the MatlabGPR framework, use the script
”CB load plot 1CH with2traces.m” for plotting a series of IDS acquired radargrams alongside two specifically selected traces from within each radargram with Matlab-GPR. IDS
radar data are of the format ”LIDXNNNN.dt”, where X stands for the channel number
and NNNN is the profile number in four digits. The testdata you might explore include:
ASSESS 8CH CO Standard eight channel IDS common offset measurement (profile name:
LIDX0001, with the channel number X=1. . . 8) as acquired at the ASSESS site prior
to the installation of the field scanner. The script is setup in a way that it should
work out-of-the-box with this dataset;
FS 8CH CO Standard eight channel IDS common offset measurement (profile name:
LIDX0001 as well) as acquired at the ASSESS site after the installation of the field
scanner. In this case - as long as the data acquisition software is not completely
finished - the true trace separation dx has to be provided manually as is indicated
in the comments in the script;
FS singleCMPs Standard eight channel IDS CMP measurement(profile name: LIDX0008)
as acquired at the ASSESS site after the installation of the field scanner. Again, dx
has to be provided separately. For a decent plot, you will also have to shorten the
limits on the x-axis.
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A.2 Hands on!
Your plotted radargrams are saved to ”../CB examples/3 plots/”. Changing the outputfilename each time, try and play a little with the evaluation parameters for one of the
profiles, e.g.:
• plot different traces at the side
• change the normalization mode from ’constant’ to ’TbT’ or ’maxT’ and explore the
differences. You will probably have to adapt plotpars.colorlims accordingly for a
decent plot.
• alter the amplification value and observe the differences. Again, adapt plotpars.colorlims
until your plot shows a decent coloring.
A.2.2 Task 2: Evaluating a field scanner measured CMP (1h)
Use the script ”CB FS singleCMPs evaluate.m” to evaluate all four crossbox channels
of a fieldscanner acquired CMP. Follow the onscreen instructions to consecutively pick
the direct wave, the first layer reflection and the bottom reflection for each channel.
From automatically fitting the respective picked value, the script then directly calculates
water contents, reflector depths for the reflection picks, and saves picked travel times and
summed absolute amplitudes to files. If you have completed evaluating all four crossbox
channels for a chosen GPR profile (setting the channel variable CH to 5. . . 8 for one profile
number), the combined results for all four channels of a given profile can be plotted using
the provided extra script ”CB FS singleCMPs plot results.m”. CMP data which you can
evaluate for later comparison:
Profile #8 A1 (SN212) on the weatherstation side (”antenna setup 1”), normal polarization (”Pol 1”)
Profile #14 A1 (SN212) on the weatherstation side (”antenna setup 1”), endfire polarization (”Pol 2”)
Profile #21 A1 (SN216) on the weatherstation side (”antenna setup 2”), normal polarization (”Pol 1”)
Profile #24 A1 (SN216) on the weatherstation side (”antenna setup 2”), endfire polarization (”Pol 2”)
What differences can you find between different polarizations using the same setup? What
differences do you observe between different setups?
A.2.3 Task 3: Basic frequency evaluation (20min)
Use the script ”CB freqeval 4CH” to execute a basic frequency evaluation, consisting of:
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• picking the feature you wish to calculate frequency spectra from
• calculating muted amplitude data around this pick
• calculating frequency spectra of these muted data
• picking the maximum frequency for these spectra
• plotting averaged frequency spectra for each radargram
From the muted data, judge if the used muting parameter extent is suitable. Change
the parameters mutingpars.taplen and mutigpars.mutingwidth, rerun the script until you
arrive at a suitable combination.
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```