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Advantages of Moisture sensor | Disadvantages of Moisture sensor for soil

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of Moisture sensor for soil. It mentions Soil Moisture sensor advantages and Soil Moisture sensor disadvantages.

Definition: The sensor which measures water content in a soil is known as moisture sensor. A probe contains multiple such sensors. It helps in managing irrigation systems more effectively and efficiently.

It helps farmers to save water, to increase yields and to increase quality of the crop. The figure-1 depicts SM150 moisture sensor used for soil moisture measurement.

Moisture Sensor

As shown two sensing rods are attached with plastic body. These rods are inserted directly into the soil for test and measurement. It produces differential analog DC voltage output.

When power is applied to the probe, it creates waveform which is applied to rods. These rods transmit EM field into the soil. The permittivity of soil affects the applied field strongly which is detected by the probe. As a result it produces stable voltage output.
Refer Humidity sensor basics >> and advantages and disadvantages of Humidity sensor >> for more information.

Following are the types of soil moisture sensors.
• Gravimetric
• Watermark sensors
• Capacitance sensors
• Tensiometers
The different methods have unique merits and demerits.

Advantages of Moisture sensor for soil

Following are the advantages of Moisture sensor for soil :
➨Simple method of measurement.
➨It delivers the results immediately.
➨Watermark sensors and tensiometers are very low in cost.
➨Offers accurate results.
➨Watermark sensors offer larger moisture reading range from 0 to 200 cb or kpa.

Disadvantages of Moisture sensor for soil

Following are the disadvantages of Moisture sensor for soil:
➨It requires initial evaluation of site specific conditions before selection of appropriate moisture sensor.
➨It requires probe to be inserted in the soil. It requires labor to collect the data and maintain the measurement processes.
➨The measured values depend on properties of various materials. The correct interpretation and use of moisture data is needed.
➨Watermark sensors provide less accuracy in sandy soils due to large particles.
➨Watermark sensors are required to be calibrated for each soil types. Tensiometers also require periodic service.

Also refer advantages and disadvantages of Humidity sensor >>.

Advantages and Disadvantages of other Sensor Types

Capacitive    Inductive    Photoelectric    Ultrasonic    Infrared    Motion    Biometric    Force    Humidity    Temperature    Light    Barometer    Sound    pH    Soil Moisture   

Different types of Sensors Related links

Article on Sensors and Transducers>>
Proximity Sensor
Occupancy Sensor vs Motion Sensor
LVDT and RVDT sensor
Position, displacement and level sensor
force sensor and strain sensor
temperature sensor
pressure sensor
Humidity sensor
MEMS sensor
Touch sensor
Haptic sensor
Wireless sensor

RF and Wireless Terminologies


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