Prediction of the immediate effect of traffic on field soil qualities

P. Lerink

    Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU


    Field traffic by heavy machinery and transport vehicles is an integral part of modem arable crop production systems. The greater part of the field area is trafficked once or several times per year during the successive field operations. The traffic induced effect on the soil physical condition is often considered detrimental and must be minimized within the margins of practical and economical feasibility. The object of this study is to establish a strategy for prediction of the effects of traffic to be used on a farm scale.

    The prediction method is based on a drastic limitation of the domain of prediction: a single field, two traffic systems, and two types of field operations. The effect of compaction by field traffic is expressed by so called soil qualities, i.e. soil physical properties which contain relevant information for the soil user. The soil condition at the time a certain field operation is performed is described by a single soil characteristic only: the gravimetric water content. Field traffic is characterized by the type of field operation and the type of traffic system. These characteristics are further described in terms of the tyre inflation pressure, the wheelload and the number of wheelings. The prediction functions, relating soil and traffic characteristics to the expected effect on soil qualities are established by means of a comparative method, and based on laboratory measurements on field compacted soil. The prediction functions are presented by means of extended M-P-V diagrams.

    In the discussion of the experimental results, the significance of supplementary laboratory compaction methods are mentioned. Moreover, the extension of the prediction functions to situations beyond the domain considered in this study is briefly explored.

    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • Kuipers, H., Promotor
    • Koolen, A.J., Promotor, External person
    Award date29 Jun 1994
    Place of PublicationS.l.
    Print ISBNs9789054852674
    Publication statusPublished - 1994


    • soil compaction
    • soil physics
    • soil mechanics
    • tillage
    • soil quality


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