New soil moisture study opens door for future satellite remote sensing

A bare agricultural field showing some crop residue on the surface of the soil. In the distance are instrument towers.

A multi-institutional study led by scientists in the Agroecosystem Sustainability Center (ASC) at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign concluded that although soil moisture varies significantly both within a single field and from field to field due to varying soil properties and different management practices, soil moisture distribution relative to the field average remains consistent across time within each field. 

Over three years, the team used sensor measurements and a high