Soil Research
 First in Full Range PDA Spectrometer, Spectroradiometer and Spectrophotometer Systems
1 Canal Street  ◊  Unit B1
Lawrence, MA 01840  USA
Tel: 978 687-1833  ◊  Fax: 978 945-0372

Copyright © 2012 Spectral Evolution, Inc
UV/VIS/NIR reflectance spectroscopy
satisfies the researchers need for speed
and precision in the estimation of soil
carbon and other soil properties. Used
both in the field and in the lab, these
spectroradiometers and spectrometers
allow for studies that can measure the
effects of climate change, the increasing
impact of fertilizers in the soil, soil
mapping, and other critical land changes
without the need for sample preparation.
Reflectance spectroscopy in the VIS/NIR range has been used
for years as a nondestructive tool for evaluating soil properties.
The measurement of water, carbon, nitrogen, and organic matter
provide critical information on soil health, including:
  • Erosion risk
  • Hydraulic properties
  • Soil degradation
  • Soil mapping and monitoring
Traditional soil sampling processes are slow and expensive:
gathering soil samples, preparing them for analysis, sending
them to the lab, and waiting for their return. As a result, very few
locations in the United States, let alone the rest of the world,
have accurate soil maps. As concerns grow about more efficient
agricultural practices, the effects of climate change, over-
fertilization with chemicals, erosion, and pollution, the availability
of field spectrometry for soil science becomes increasingly
popular. In addition, a field spectrometer or spectroradiometer
offers the possibility of accurately categorizing soil/land changes
over a large area.

NIR reflectance spectroscopy performed in the field offers a
relatively simple, non-destructive, reliable, inexpensive, fast,
and accurate method for characterizing soil. Sample preparation
involves only air drying and crushing/grinding, analysis won't
change or affect the sample in any way, no chemicals or
hazardous materials are used, measurements are very fast, and
several different soil characteristics can be gleaned from a
single scan. Testing can be performed in a lab, or more
in situ.

Spectral signatures of materials are defined by reflectance or
absorption as a function of wavelength. NIR spectroscopy
measures the reflectance of infrared light wavelengths for
samples and the shapes of the soil spectra correspond to
mineral composition, organic matter, clay content, water, iron
form and amount, salinity, and particle size distribution.
Depending on what’s in the soil, individual molecular bonds
vibrate and absorb light with a specific energy quantum related
to the difference between two energy levels. The energy
quantum is directly related to frequency and inversely related to
wavelength. The resulting absorption spectrum produces a
characteristic shape that can be used for analysis. The data
collected can provide a picture of soil health and fertility for food
source management and security, as well as natural resource
management and land conservation/development.
Spectral libraries continue to be built to allow calibrations to be
based on a small number of samples and then applied in the
rapid analysis of large numbers. For example, in one field
application, 800 spectra were collected in samples from the
Railroad Valley Playa in Nevada in one day, using a SPECTRAL
EVOLUTION PSR-3500 field spectroradiometer with a standard
four degree field of view lens from a distance of one meter.
Solar radiance of the reflected light was also captured in the
same measurement.

The spectra collected can be analyzed using a range of third
party analysis and chemometric packages, including GRAMS, The
Spectral Geologist (TSG), and others. These software products
are used for geochemical analysis and interpretation of basic
soil composition, especially organic matter, texture, clay
mineralogy, nutrient availability, fertility, structure, and even
microbial activity. SPECTRAL EVOLUTION'S DARWin SP Data
Acquisition software saves your spectra as ASCII files for use
with analysis software. In addition DARWin SP includes our
EZ-ID sample identification software that matches a target
spectra against a library of known spectra. Or if you want to build
a custom soils library, EZ-ID offers the fast and easy-to-use
Custom Library Builder module.
Spectral Evolution
Handheld Portable
Spectrometers can be
ordered with the full
featured Getac PS336
ruggedized PDA.

More info on the PS336  
from Getac
Screen shot of Getac PS236 handheld PDA -  True handheld convenience for field work or remote sensing!- Every SPECTRAL EVOLUTION handheld spectrometer can be controlled via Bluetooth connection by a Windows-enabled laptop or ruggedized personal digital assistant (PDA) running Microsoft Windows Mobile. SPECTRAL EVOLUTION offers a PDA compatible version of its DARWin SP Data Acquisition Package that permits rapid analysis of mobile data and can be used to trigger data collection remotely.
True handheld convenience for field work or remote sensing!
Every SPECTRAL EVOLUTION handheld spectrometer can be
controlled with a  laptop or ruggedized personal digital
assistant (PDA). its DARWin SP Data Acquisition Package that
permits rapid analysis of mobile data and can be used to
trigger data collection remotely. All SPECTRAL EVOLUTION
handheld portable spectrometers also feature fingertip
controls and an to 500 spectra, so the unit can even be
operated without a computer or PDA!  SPECTRAL
EVOLUTION offers the GETAC PS336 PDA preloaded with all
necessary software to run all Bluetooth enabled SPECTRAL
EVOLUTION Spectrometers. The GETAC can be used to tag
megapixel camera) and voice notes with its built in
microphone. In this image, the PS336 was used to take a leaf
scan along with a photo of the leaf. The extra bright 480x640
display can even be viewed in direct sunlight!
 First in Full Range PDA Spectrometer, Spectroradiometer and Spectrophotometer Systems
SPECTRAL EVOLUTION's PSR+ 3500  lightweight battery operated portable
spectroradiometer is ideal for soil studies, including topsoil fertility.
PSR+ 3500
PSR+ field spectroradiometer for soil analysis