Delineating Salinity and Sodicity Distribution in Major Soil Map Units of El Paso, Texas, Using Electromagnetic Induction Technique Academic Article uri icon


  • A majority of the irrigated area in the Trans-Pecos basin in the United States is affected by both salinity and sodicity that affect the long-term viability of irrigated agriculture in the region. Accurate information on spatial distribution of salinity and sodicity in the irrigated areas at a field scale is necessary for developing effective management practices. Currently, information on the amount and the distribution of salts within the irrigated areas of the Trans-Pecos basin is not available. Conventional method of soil salinity (saturated paste electrical conductivity) and sodicity (sodium adsorption ratio) assessment at a high spatial resolution is expensive, time consuming, and labor intensive. Electromagnetic induction technique can offer a low-cost, noninvasive, and rapid alternative for determining the spatial distribution of both salinity and sodicity. In this study, we evaluated the accuracy of EMI technique to delineate salt and sodicity distribution within a 12-ha study site that had all four dominant soil map units (Saneli-clayey over sandy or sandy-skeletal, montmorillonitic [calcareous], thermic Vertic Torrifluvents; Tigua-very fine, montmorillonitic (calcareous), thermic Vertic Torrifluvents; Harkey-coarse-silty, mixed [calcareous], thermic Typic Torrifluvents; Glendale-fine-silty, mixed [calcareous], thermic Typic Torrifluvents) of the Trans-Pecos basin. Salinity and sodicity values estimated by EMI technique ranged from 0.73 to 10.55 dS m and sodium adsorption ratio ranged from 1.2 to 21.6 mmol L. Results of this project indicated that the EMI technique can produce accurate information on salinity distribution. Soil clay and moisture content at the time of the survey strongly influenced the accuracy of the EMI technique. Copyright © 2011 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Ganjegunte, G. K., & Braun, R. J.

citation count

  • 7

publication date

  • August 2011