Measuring soil carbon levels with a handheld probe
Yard Stick and Soil Health Institute are working together to create a handheld soil probe that measures carbon levels with VisNIR spectrometry and pressure sensors.
The original probe was so large it had to be mounted on the back of a truck. Yard Stick is miniaturizing the technology so it can be used with a simple handheld drill and creating a commercial business to support the product.
The tip of the probe is a small camera that uses wavelengths to sense the presence of organic carbon the way our eyes sense the presence of blue when looking at the sky.
The resistance sensors on the probe calculate the density of the soil. With those two inputs, Yard Stick says it can calculate the amount of carbon sequestered in a particular area of soil.