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Max-Eyth-Allee 100

14469 Potsdam


Tel. +49 (0)331 5699-0


Coordinating institute

Soil fertility

Instrument for X-ray flourescence (XRF) measurements in the field (Source: analyticon, ATB)
Instrument for X-ray flourescence (XRF) measurements in the field (Source: analyticon, ATB)

Contact: Robin GebbersVolker DworakBenjamin Mahns, Marcel Oertel, Michael Schirrmann

Target values of the sensor-based soil mapping are plant-available and fixed nutrients, acidity, organic substance, water content, texture, soil compaction, porosity and biological activity.

Methods of geoelectricity, VisNIR, Raman and XRF spectroscopy are used. A completely new technology is the terahertz-spectroscopy which is currently in the focus of basic research. The above-mentioned soil sensors are to be used on semi-automatic and (partly) automatic platforms. An autonomous sampler (robot) is being developed in cooperation with TU Berlin for fully automated applications. The sensory data are fused and evaluated using current methods of machine learning. Geostatistic methods are used to model the spatial prediction and estimation of sampling distances.

Current research

  • How is soil fertility to be characterized economically in fields at high temporal and spatial resolution
  • What are the relationships between relevant soil properties and the signals gained from different sensors?
  • How can sensor data be integrated into decision support systems for soil management (fertilization, soil tillage, irrigation)?
  • What is the variability of soil properties (contrast, frequency)?
  • What are the impacts of management measures on soil properties, and which conclusions can be drawn for soil management?
  • How can automatic sample feeding and conditioning be implemented in the mobile use of soil sensors in order to achieve good measuring results?
  • How can the relationship of the sensor signal and ground characteristic be mathematically modeled and used for the prognosis?

Ongoing research projects

  • Investigation of soil fertility with stationary and mobile sensors as well as multivariate methods of spatial statistics
  • Terahertz measuring technology for the investigation of soils
  • Project I4S: Intelligence for Soil - Integrated system for the site-specific management of soil fertility

Program events

May 4, 2020: Virtual Meeting - INI2020 in Berlin (originally scheduled for May 3-7, 2020)

For Covid-19 updates concerning the 8th Global Nitrogen Conference of the International Nitrogen...

Oct 11-12, 2020: Water use assessment of livestock production systems and supply chains, Berlin

The expert-workshop serves to advance and harmonize methods and techniques and improve water use in...

Program news

ATB at IPM 2020 in Essen

Feb 3, 2020: Under the motto "Borders are blurring - an industry in flux", research institutes...

Flugtraining für Landwirte

12. Dez. 2019: Was ist bei der Erstellung von Luftbildern mit Drohnen zu beachten? Welche Software...


Präzises Modell für den optimalen Fruchtbehang

6. Juni 2019: Brandenburgs Agrar- und Umweltstaatssekretärin Dr. Carolin Schilde informierte sich bei ihrem gestrigen Besuch am ATB-Forschungsstandort Marquardt über Ergebnisse des EIP-Agri Projekts...

Projekt SunBot: Autonome Pflegehelfer für das Beerenobst

14. Aug. 2018: Ein autonom fahrender, mit Energie aus Photovoltaik gespeister Traktor soll künftig in Strauchbeerenanlagen gezielt die Pflege des Unterwuchses übernehmen und damit helfen, Ertrag und...

Leibniz-Institut für Agrartechnik und Bioökonomie e.V. · Max-Eyth-Allee 100 · 14469 Potsdam · Germany · Tel. +49 (0)331 5699 0 · E-mail