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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Ecological Modelling, 2008, Vol.216(3), pp.291-302
    Description: During the past 10 years, soil scientists have started to use 3D Computed Tomography in order to gain a clearer understanding of the geometry of soil structure and its relationships with soil properties. We propose a geometric model for the 3D representation of pore space and a practical method for its computation. Our basic idea consists in representing pore space using a minimal set of maximal balls (Delaunay spheres) recovering the shape skeleton. In this representation, each ball could be considered as a maximal local cavity corresponding to the “intuitive” notion of a pore as described in the literature. The space segmentation induced by the network of balls (pores) was then used to spatialize biological dynamics. Organic matter and microbial decomposers were distributed within the balls (pores). A valuated graph representing the pore network, organic matter and distribution of micro-organisms was then defined. Microbial soil organic matter decomposition was simulated by updating this valuated graph. The method was implemented and tested using real CT images. The model produced realistic simulated results when compared with data in the literature in terms of the water retention curve and carbon mineralization. A decrease in water pressure decreased carbon mineralization, which is also in accordance with findings in the literature. From our results we showed that the influence of water pressure on decomposition is a function of organic matter distribution in the pore space. As far as we know, this is the approach to have linked pore space geometry and biological dynamics in a formal way. Our next goal will be to compare the model with experimental data of decomposition using different soil structures, and to define geometric typologies of pore space shape that can be attached to specific biological and dynamic properties.
    Keywords: Computational Geometry ; Soil Science ; Pore Space Modelling ; Microbial Decomposition Simulation ; 3d Computer Vision ; Environmental Sciences ; Ecology
    ISSN: 0304-3800
    E-ISSN: 1872-7026
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Computers and Geosciences, 2009, Vol.35(9), pp.1789-1801
    Description: This study is the follow-up to a previous one devoted to soil pore space modelling. In the previous study, we proposed algorithms to represent soil pore space by means of optimal piecewise approximation using simple 3D geometrical primitives: balls, cylinders, cones, etc. In the present study, we use the ball-based piecewise approximation to simulate biological activity. The basic idea for modelling pore space consists in representing pore space using a minimal set of maximal balls (Delaunay spheres) recovering the shape skeleton. In this representation, each ball is considered as a maximal local cavity corresponding to the “intuitive” notion of a pore as described in the literature. The space segmentation induced by the network of balls (pores) is then used to spatialise biological dynamics. Organic matter and microbial decomposers are distributed within the balls (pores). A valuated graph representing the pore network, organic matter and microorganism distribution is then defined. Microbial soil organic matter decomposition is simulated by updating this valuated graph. The method has been implemented and tested on real data. As far as we know, this approach is the first one to formally link pore space geometry and biological dynamics. The long-term goal is to define geometrical typologies of pore space shape that can be attached to specific biological dynamic properties. This paper is a first attempt to achieve this goal.
    Keywords: 3d Computer Vision ; Biological Dynamics Simulation ; Computed Tomography ; Computational Geometry ; Microbial Decomposition ; Pore Space Modelling ; Geology
    ISSN: 0098-3004
    E-ISSN: 1873-7803
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