The lysimeter is an important instrument for measuring the soil water budget and for the understanding of water and material flows in the ground. In the micro lysimeter installation in Petzenkirchen, main processes may be observed on a small scale and under controllable circumstances, which enables the testing of different versions (i.e. soil types, fertilizer or contaminant quantities) and the deduction of parameters necessary to the subsequent modelling of movement and mass transport.

Contact Person: Alexander Eder

Brief Description:

At the BAW-IKT Petzenkirchen the micro lysimeter setting consists of a total of 16 weighable micro lysimeters, whose soil water budget can be virtually monitored in real time. The water movement and mass transport are gathered by different sensors (Matric potential, water content, balances, ion sensitive electrodes etc.). Each micro lysimeter may, depending on particular scientific needs, be equipped modularly with various sensor technologies and have a controllable overhead irrigation head, which allows an even surface distribution of the irrigation water. Water samples can be collected at the bottom edge of the micro lysimeter either by the principle of gravity or if ceramic tiles are being used by creating a vacuum.

Concluded Experiments:

  • URAN-GW: Through contamination of mineral phosphor fertilizer, uranium is applied regularly on agricultural fields. During the project Uran-GW, the uranium’s behaviour in the soil (adsorption, transport) and the possible danger to the groundwater was examined.

Current Experiments:

  • Examination of a new ion resin based method for measuring nitrogen loads under organically/biologically cultivated areas
  • Development of a sensor for measuring the dissolved organic carbon content in the seepage water of agriculturally used areas



Baumgarten A.,  A. Eder, G. Dersch, G. Grosgut, F. Humer, M. Herndl, Ch. Katzlberger, M. Kumpan, C. Landstetter, B. Liebmann, E. Pfundtner, A. Riss, H. Spiegel, G. Zethner, 2016: Verhalten von Uran aus Phosphat haltigen Düngern im System Boden-Wasser-Pflanze. Endbericht. Wien

published at 08.11.2017, IKT - Institut für Kulturtechnik und Bodenwasserhaushalt