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Disciplinary Sessions
Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions

Session programme


SSS – Soil System Sciences

SSS12 – Methods and Technological Advances in Soil Science


Analytical methods are the foundation of every scientific discipline. Therefore have they very important role in soil science and in all other related disciplines. From the choice of analytical method there depends the accuracy of researches and quality of the findings, and according to this the novelty and usefulness for society. Today we can see the usage of a very wide spectrum of methods and techniques in soil science from quite simple classical methods up to high-precision methods based on high-tech instruments. The wise usage of analytical methods and techniques allows the investigation of the processes and mechanisms in soils and to assess the status of the environment. Unfortunately, the importance of their utilisation in soil analysis is often underestimated. The main purpose of our session is to emphasize the importance of the analytical methods used to achieve the results in soil research.

The aim of this session is to present the usage of different laboratory methods and techniques in soil research and give possibility for researchers to exchange their experiences. The special goal of this session will be to promote a wider use of innovative analytical methods and hyphenated instrumental techniques for separation and determination of chemical and biochemical compounds of both known and unknown structures in mineral and organic soils, sediments, substrates and composts. Modern analytical methods and hyphenated techniques can be utilized for the investigation of the processes and mechanisms in soils like formation, transformation, and conversion.
The session is an opportunity to present the works describing the usage of wide range of equipment, from smartphones to MS in the analysis of soils. The session is not limited to these techniques or methods. Works describing the methods of soil physical analysis are accepted also. The studies connected with methodology of soil chemical analysis and particularly soil organic matter are welcome.

Co-organized as BG2.28/NH3.26
Convener: Tonu Tonutare | Co-conveners: Viia Lepane, Manfred Sager
| Tue, 09 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Room G1
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 08:30–10:15
Hall X1
SSS12.2 | PICO

A well-designed experiment is a crucial methodology in Soil Science, Geomorphology and Hydrology.
Depending on the specific research topic, a great variety of tempo-spatial scales is addressed.
From raindrop impact and single particle detachment to the shaping of landscapes: experiments are designed and conducted to illustrate problems, clarify research questions, develop and test hypotheses, generate data and deepen process understanding.
Every step involved in design, construction, conduction, processing and interpretation of experiments and experimental data might be a challenge on itself, and discussions within the community can be a substantial and fruitful component for both, researchers and teachers.
This PICO session offers a forum for experimentalists, teachers, students and enthusiasts.
We invite you to present your work, your questions, your results and your method, to meet, to discuss, to exchange ideas and to consider old and new approaches.
Join the experimentalists!

Co-organized as GM1.11/HS9.1.5
Convener: Thomas Iserloh | Co-conveners: Miriam Marzen, Wolfgang Fister, Jorge Isidoro, Ian Pattison
| Thu, 11 Apr, 10:45–12:30
PICO spot 3

Soil is the key element in the Earth System acting as a control on hydrological, biological, erosional and geochemical cycles. Moreover, the soils are a critical resource for food and fiber production that sustains human societies. Because of the crucial role that soils play in the Earth System, soil conservation is necessary to achieve a sustainable world. Considering the upcoming challenges, different kinds of stakeholders, including researchers, farmers, policy makers, have an urgent need for tools based on metrics, information and statistics that can facilitate the transferability and communication of soil complexity.
This session provides the premier forum for the presentation of new advances and research results in the fields of experimental, theoretical, and applied soil conservation and eco sustainability. Further, it focuses on advances in the information technologies that publish data, metrics and statistics on soil and earth critical zone or assist their production with the special emphasis of supporting the decision making.
The session will bring together leading researchers, engineers and scientists in the domain of interest from around the world. Topics of interest for submission include, but are not limited to:

Modeling in the GIS / WebGIS framework
Geospatial processing & cyber infrastructures
Big geospatial data & software
Economic technology and instruments
Web based geospatial decision support systems

Remote sensing
Lab / Field experiments
Modeling the Earth Critical Zone
Environmental regulation and monitoring
Environmental systems approach

Soil micromorphology / mineralogy
Surface and subsurface Hydrology
Water balance
Erosional and depositional processes
Watershed geomorphology

Soil evolution and weathering
Soils and surface processes
Hydrologic / Geomorphic change
Land use impacts on geomorphology
Landscape degradation and restoration

Soil and water conservation
Environmental sustainability
Resource management
Sustainable cities
Health and the Environment
Hazardous substances and detection techniques
Toxicity assessment and epidemiological studies
Water resources and river basin management

Analogue modeling, Landscape evolution, Sustainability, Geospatial decision support

Convener: Xiangzhou Xu | Co-conveners: Giuliano Langella, Tingwu Lei, Manuel Esteban Lucas-Borja, Paolo Tarolli, Luís de Sousa
| Wed, 10 Apr, 08:30–12:30
Room G1
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Hall X1

Ecosystems, their abiotic and biotic compartments as well as their internal processes and interactions can be interpreted as the result of numerous evolutionary steps during system development. Understanding ecosystem development can be regarded, therefore, as crucial for understanding ecosystem functioning. This session will highlight research in this field within two parts.

The first part of this session is dedicated to experimental approaches to disentangle these complex processes and interactions of the Critical Zone. Well-known flagship sites in this sense are, e.g., Biosphere2 in the USA or Hydrohill in China. In addition, post-mining landscapes worldwide offer multiple opportunities for establishing artificial experimental sites for various purposes. Many experimental sites are based on hydrological catchments as integrative landscape units. Other large-scale experiments focus on selected parts of ecosystems which were modified or transplanted. This part of the session tries to create a global overview on large-scale landscape experiments on ecohydrological, pedological, biogeochemical or ecological processes within the Critical Zone.

The second part is related to the co-evolution of spatial patterns of vegetation, soils and landforms. These patterns are recognized as sources of valuable information that can be used to infer the state and function of ecosystems. Complex interactions and feedbacks between climate, soils and biotic factors are involved in the development of landform-soil-vegetation patterns, and play an important role on the stability of landscapes. In addition, large shifts in the organization of vegetation and soils are associated with land degradation, frequently involving large changes in the functioning of landscapes. This part of the session will focus on ecogeomorphological and ecohydrological aspects of landscapes, conservation of soil resources, and the restoration of ecosystem functions.

Invited talks will be given by Dr. Abad Chabbi (Director of Research at the French National Institute for Agricultural Research, INRA) on “Challenges, insights and perspectives associated with combining observation and experimentation research infrastructure“. Part two of the session is proud to announce the invited talk of Prof. Praveen Kumar (Lovell Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois, USA, Director of the US NSF Critical Zone Observatory for Intensively Managed Landscapes) on "Co-evolution of landscape and carbon profile through depth: understanding the interplay between transport and biochemical dynamics".

Co-organized as BG1.60/GI4.14/GM5.11/HS11.4
Convener: Werner Gerwin | Co-conveners: Mariano Moreno de las Heras, Laura Meredith, Jin Lin, Patricia Saco, Jantiene Baartman, Jose Rodriguez
| Fri, 12 Apr, 10:45–12:30, 14:00–15:45, 16:15–18:00
Room G1
| Attendance Fri, 12 Apr, 08:30–10:15
Hall X1

The interactions between geo-environmental and anthropic processes are increasing due to the ever-growing population and its related side effects (e.g., urban sprawl, land degradation, natural resource and energy consumption, etc.). Natural hazards, land degradation and environmental pollution are three of the possible “interactions” between geosphere and anthroposphere. In this context, spatial and spatiotemporal data are of crucial importance for the identification, analysis and modelling of the processes of interest in Earth and Soil Sciences. The information content of such geo-environmental data requires advanced mathematical, statistical and geomorphometric methodologies in order to be fully exploited.

The session aims to explore the challenges and potentialities of quantitative spatial data analysis and modelling in the context of Earth and Soil Sciences, with a special focus on geo-environmental challenges. Studies implementing intuitive and applied mathematical/numerical approaches and highlighting their key potentialities and limitations are particularly sought after. A special attention is paid to spatial uncertainty evaluation and its possible reduction, and to alternative techniques of representation of spatial data (e.g., visualization, sonification, haptic devices, etc.).

In the session, two main topics will be covered (although the session is not limited to them!):
1) Analysis of sparse (fragmentary) spatial data for mapping purposes with evaluation of spatial uncertainty: geostatistics, machine learning, statistical learning, etc.
2) Analysis and representation of exhaustive spatial data at different scales and resolutions: geomorphometry, image analysis, machine learning, pattern recognition, etc.

Co-organized as GM2.11/SSS12.7
Convener: Jean Golay | Co-conveners: Marco Cavalli, Mohamed Laib, Sebastiano Trevisani
| Wed, 10 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Room 0.96
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Hall X1

Soil moisture is a crucial variable in many scientific areas, including hydrology, environmental studies, agriculture, climate research and other fields of geoscience. Electromagnetic devices enable fast, non-destructive and easy-to-automate soil water content determination. We invite presentations concerning in situ measurements and monitoring of soil moisture by the use of electromagnetic sensors, including TDR, FDR, GPR, capacitance, impedance inductance and resistance devices.
The subject of the session will include:
 progress in measurement methods and devices,
 calibration and verification studies,
 practical applications of soil moisture measurements in agriculture, environmental studies, hydrology, civil engineering, etc.,
 electromagnetic determination of physical properties of materials in the context of soil moisture measurements,
 standardization of soil moisture measuring methods and equipment,
 computational methods of electromagnetic wave propagation in dispersive and lossy dielectrics including theory and applications of electromagnetic mixing rules and formulas,
 integrated techniques using RF and/or microwave dielectric measurements with other methods such as impedance spectroscopy, THz spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, infrared spectroscopy, NMR, etc.

Co-organized as HS11.8/SSS12.8
Convener: Wojciech Skierucha | Co-conveners: Arkadiusz Lewandowski, Pierre Sabouroux
| Attendance Tue, 09 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Hall X1
HS1.1.3 ECS

The advancement of hydrological research relies on innovative methods to determine states and fluxes at high a spatiotemporal resolution. The emergence of novel measurement techniques has been and will continue to be an important driver for the ability to analyze hydrological processes and to evaluate process based models. Recent advances in noninvasive techniques allow continuous contactless and integrative measurements of hydrological state variables and fluxes from the field to basin scale (e.g. cosmic-ray neutron probes, GNSS reflectometry, ground-based microwave radiometry, gamma-ray monitoring, terrestrial gravimetry, “MacGyver” field solutions).
In this session, we encourage submissions dealing with such new types of sensing methods, ranging from instrumental aspects, improved algorithms of signal conversion, data analysis to applications of the new methods for investigating hydrological processes, and the integration of noninvasive monitored data into models from the field to the catchment scale.
In addition, we invite presentation on new data storage or transmission solutions sending data from the field (e.g. LoRa, WIFI, GSM) or started initiatives (e.g., Open-Sensing.org) that facilitate the creation and sharing of novel sensors, data acquisition and transmission systems.

This session is co-organized by the MOXXI: Observations in the 21st century working group of the IAHS.

Co-organized as SSS12.9
Convener: Heye Bogena | Co-conveners: Rolf Hut, Andreas Güntner, Martin Schrön, Theresa Blume, John Selker, Flavia Tauro, Andrew Wickert
| Mon, 08 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Room 2.44
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Hall A
GI4.4 Media

Progressively stricter requirements in geophysical prospecting, in urban and inter-urban monitoring make it important to look continuously for innovative solutions to new and old complex problems. In particular, investigation and monitoring of pollution, hydrological resources, energy efficiency, cultural heritage, cities and transportation infrastructures nowadays require technological and methodological innovations of geophysical and sensing techniques in order to properly understand the limits of the current state of art and to identify where possible the most convenient strategies to overcome limitations of current approaches. This goal can be achieved either with more advanced solutions in a general sense or with dedicated solutions, particularly suitable for the specific problem at hand.
Integrated prospecting, refined data processing, new models, hardware innovations, new ICT information and telecommunications systems can and should cooperate with each other in this sense. It is important that the scientific community finds a moment for considering the connection between adjacent aspects of the same problem, e.g. to achieve improved geophysical data, safe and reliable environmental and structural monitoring, improved processing as much as possible.
The session “ Innovative instrumentations, techniques, geophysical methods and models for near surface geophysics, cities and transportation infrastructures aims to propose one such moment, where multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary competences can interact with each other, possibly finding possible new ways to cooperate and to exchange experiences reciprocally to reach sustainable solutions.

Co-organized as BG1.13/EMRP2.30/HS11.27/NH11.3/SSS12.10
Convener: Raffaele Persico | Co-conveners: Mario Marchetti, Salvatore Piro, F.C. Ponzo
| Fri, 12 Apr, 08:30–10:15
Room M1
| Attendance Fri, 12 Apr, 10:45–12:30
Hall X1

Topographic data are fundamental to landscape characterization across the geosciences, for monitoring change and supporting process modelling. Over the last decade, the dominance of laser-based instruments for high resolution data collection has been challenged by advances in digital photogrammetry and computer vision, particularly in ‘structure from motion’ (SfM) algorithms, which offer a new paradigm to geoscientists.

High resolution topographic (HiRT) data are now obtained over spatial scales from millimetres to kilometres, and over durations of single events to lasting time series (e.g. from sub-second to decadal-duration time-lapse), allowing evaluation of dependencies between event magnitudes and frequencies. Such 4D-reconstruction capabilities enable new insight in diverse fields such as soil erosion, micro-topography reconstruction, volcanology, glaciology, landslide monitoring, and coastal and fluvial geomorphology. Furthermore, broad data integration from multiple sensors offers increasingly exciting opportunities.

This session will evaluate the advances in techniques to model topography and to study patterns of topographic change at multiple temporal and spatial scales. We invite contributions covering all aspects of HiRT reconstruction in the geosciences, and particularly those which transfer traditional expertise or demonstrate a significant advance enabled by novel datasets. We encourage contributions describing workflows that optimize data acquisition and post-processing to guarantee acceptable accuracies and to automate data application (e.g. geomorphic feature detection and tracking), and field-based experimental studies using novel multi-instrument and multi-scale methodologies. A major goal is to provide a cross-disciplinary exchange of experiences with modern technologies and data processing tools, to highlight their potentials, limitations and challenges in different environments.

Solicited speaker: Kuo-Jen Chang (National Taipei University of Technology) - UAS LiDAR data processing, quality assessment and geosciences prospects

Co-organized as CR2.11/G6.4/GI4.10/GMPV7.2/HS9.1.9/NH6.15/SSS12.12/TS11.7
Convener: Anette Eltner | Co-conveners: Mike James, Andreas Kaiser, Mark Smith, Jack Williams
| Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Room G2
| Attendance Tue, 09 Apr, 08:30–10:15
Hall X2

Seismic techniques are becoming widely used to detect and quantitatively characterise a wide variety of natural processes occurring at the Earth’s surface. These processes include mass movements such as landslides, rock falls, debris flows and lahars; glacial phenomena such as icequakes, glacier calving/serac falls, glacier melt and supra- to sub-glacial hydrology; snow avalanches; water storage and water dynamics phenomena such as water table changes, river flow turbulence and fluvial sediment transport. Where other methods often provide limited spatial and temporal coverage, seismic observations allow recovering sequences of events with high temporal resolution and over large areas. These observational capabilities allow establishing connections with meteorological drivers, and give unprecedented insights on the underlying physics of the various Earth’s surface processes as well as on their interactions (chains of events). These capabilities are also of first interest for real time hazards monitoring and early warning purposes. In particular, seismic monitoring techniques can provide relevant information on the dynamics of flows and unstable slopes, and thus allow for the identification of precursory patterns of hazardous events and timely warning.

This session aims at bringing together scientists who use seismic methods to study Earth surface dynamics. We invite contributions from the field of geomorphology, cryospheric sciences, seismology, natural hazards, volcanology, soil system sciences and hydrology. Theoretical, field based and experimental approaches are highly welcome.

Co-organized as CR2.9/GI4.12/GMPV7.1/HS11.55/NH4.6/SM1.4/SSS12.13
Convener: Florent Gimbert | Co-conveners: Wei-An Chao, Velio Coviello, Andrea Manconi, Anne Schöpa
| Mon, 08 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Room G2
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Hall X2

The IR (MWIR 3-5micron and LWIR 7-12micron) sensing technologies have reached a significant level of maturity and has become a powerful method of Earth surface sensing.
Thermal sensing is currently used for characterize land surface Temperature (LST) and Land Surface Emissivity (LSE) and many other environmental proxy variables, which part of them can have a further relevance when assimilated into hydrological and climatological models.
The usefulness of IR sensing has been experimented in many environmental applications and also in the spatio-temporal domain for spatial patterns identification.
The session welcomes communications based on the actual of next future IR imagery from broadband to multi/hyperspectral applied to proximal or remote sensing (ECOSTRESS, ASTER, Sentinel3, Landsat etc. and airborne sensors) in the following specific objectives:
- IR instruments solution
- Instrument radiometric calibration procedures
- Algorithms retrieval for Temperature and Emissivity
- Soil properties characterization
- Evapo-Transpiration, water plants stress and drought
- IR targets identification
- Archaeological prospection
- Urban areas and infrastructure investigation
- Geophysical phenomena characterization
- IR synergy with optical imagery




Co-organized as AS5.9/HS6.9/NH6.17/SSS12.14
Convener: Stefano Pignatti | Co-conveners: Eyal Ben Dor, Maria Fabrizia Buongiorno, Angelo Palombo, Francesco Marchese, Nicola Genzano, Vasco Mantas, George Xian
| Mon, 08 Apr, 08:30–10:15
Room 0.96
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 10:45–12:30
Hall X1

This session is open to all contributions in biogeochemistry and ecology where stable isotope techniques are used as analytical tools, with a focus on stable isotopes of light elements (C, H, O, N, S, ...). We welcome studies from both terrestrial and aquatic (including marine) environments as well as methodological and experimental, theoretical and modeling studies that introduce new approaches or techniques (including natural abundance work, labeling studies, multi-isotope approaches, clumped and metal isotopes).

Co-organized as GMPV7.12/HS11.54/OS3.8/SSS12.15, co-sponsored by EAG
Convener: Michael E. Böttcher | Co-conveners: Kirstin Dähnke, Gerd Gleixner, Nikolaus Gussone
| Tue, 09 Apr, 08:30–10:15, 10:45–12:30
Room L2
| Attendance Tue, 09 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Hall A

Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) is a safe, advanced, non-destructive and non-invasive imaging technique that can be effectively used for inspecting the subsurface as well as natural and man-made structures. During GPR surveys, a source is used to send high-frequency electromagnetic waves into the ground or structure under test; at the boundaries where the electromagnetic properties of media change, the electromagnetic waves may undergo transmission, reflection, refraction and diffraction; the radar sensors measure the amplitudes and travel times of signals returning to the surface.

This session aims at bringing together scientists, engineers, industrial delegates and end-users working in all GPR areas, ranging from fundamental electromagnetics to the numerous fields of applications. With this session, we wish to provide a supportive framework for (1) the delivery of critical updates on the ongoing research activities, (2) fruitful discussions and development of new ideas, (3) community-building through the identification of skill sets and collaboration opportunities, (4) vital exposure of early-career scientists to the GPR research community.

We have identified a series of topics of interest for this session, listed below.

1. Ground Penetrating Radar instrumentation
- Innovative GPR equipment
- Design, realization and optimization of GPR antennas
- Equipment testing and calibration procedures

2. Ground Penetrating Radar methodology
- Survey planning and data acquisition strategies
- Methods and tools for data analysis and interpretation
- Data processing algorithms, electromagnetic modelling, imaging and inversion techniques
- Studying the relationship between GPR sensed quantities and physical properties of inspected subsurface/structures useful for application needs
- Advanced data visualization methods to clearly and efficiently communicate the significance of GPR data

3. Ground Penetrating Radar applications and case studies
- Earth sciences
- Civil engineering
- Environmental engineering
- Archaeology and cultural heritage
- Management of water resources
- Humanitarian mine clearance
- Vital signs detection of trapped people in natural and man-made disasters
- Planetary exploration

4. Contributions on the combined use of Ground Penetrating Radar and other geoscience instrumentation, in all applications fields

5. Communication and education initiatives and methods

Additional information
This session is organized by Members of TU1208 GPR Association (www.gpradar.eu/tu1208); the association is a follow-up initiative of COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) Action TU1208 “Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar”.

Co-organized as EMRP2.18/HS11.5/NH6.12/PS5.4/SSS12.16/TS11.10
Convener: Aleksandar Ristic | Co-conveners: Alessandro Fedeli, Lara Pajewski, Mercedes Solla, Milan Vrtunski
| Wed, 10 Apr, 08:30–12:30
Room 0.96
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Hall X1