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Research Interests of Dr. Smucker and his Soil Biophysics Laboratories

• Computer microtomography (CMT) imaging of soil aggregates at the APS with Dr. Mark Rivers at the GSECARS Sector 13-BM-D. This project in collaboration with Dr. George Stockman (Computer and Engineering Sciences) offers excellent quantification of the pore formation mechanisms, their structural configurations, multiple diameters and connectivities within individual soil aggregates.

• Quantification of bacterial numbers, carbon biomass, and communities in concentric layers of soil aggregates using the CMEIAS microbial imaging software and ECOSTAT with the goal of using tRFLP evaluations for further identifying microbial communities within spatially specific regions of soil aggregates having multiple dimensions.

• Micro flow cell for measuring soil aggregate processes: Saturated hydraulic conductivity, advective ion flux, pH, redox, carbohydrate and nitrate leaching, oxygen consumption and clay particle losses.

• Concentric soil layer removal from individual aggregates, sampled from multiple ecosystems, by the soil aggregate erosion (SAE) chamber method. This method assists with the quantification of multiple biophysical and biogeochemical processes within soil aggregates.

• Identification of carbon sequestration mechanisms within soil aggregates. Modifications of the organic-mineral interface during ever-changing intra-aggregates pore structures.

• Plant root C sources and contributions to soil aggregation processes.

• Image processing of plant root structures and intra-aggregate porosities.


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Copyright© 2013. Dr. Alvin J.M. Smucker , Michigan State University. All Rights Reserved.


Last Update: December 17, 2013