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Hydra Probe II Soil Sensor Benefi ts

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Stevens’ Hydra Probe II offers a unique advantage over other soil probes by providing
an all-in-one, in-situ system that can measure
many different parameters simultaneously. The
Hydra Probe instantly calculates soil moisture,
electrical conductivity, and temperature as well
as supplying the raw voltages and complex dielectric permittivity for research applications.
The data adds science to soil management for
better understanding of the impact soil conditions have on plants and the climate. The objective of the Hydra Probe is to optimize analysis
of soil conditions for research studies and for
enhanced quality and yield of turf and crops.
Hydra Probe sensing technology has been deployed for over 10 years by the USDA and is
used by NASA for ground truthing of satellite
based soil imaging. A compact, rugged design
with potted internal components makes the Hydra Probe easier to deploy than competing sensors and ideal for remote and harsh conditions.
Durable construction makes it possible for the
units to remain in the fi eld for many years, maintenance-free.
The defi ned sensing volume allows accurate
measurements in regions where there are
strong soil moisture gradients, such as near
the soil surface. Response time to changing
soil conditions is immediate, and calibration is
as simple as selecting a soil type (sand, loam,
silt or clay).
Each Hydra Probe is serial addressable, allowing for multiple sensors to be connected to any
RS485 or SDI-12 data logger via a single cable.
Sensor data can also be sent directly to a radio
The Hydra Probe is a coaxial impedance dielectric sensor. Both components of the complex
dielectric permittivity can be obtained from the
refl ected behavior of an electromagnetic wave.
Because the Hydra Probe characterizes both
components of the complex dielectric permittivity, soil moisture and soil electrical conductivity
can be measured simultaneously. An onboard
processor converts the raw signal response
into the dielectric permittivities and thus soil
moisture and electrical conductivity. With a
standard database or spreadsheet, managers
can view real-time soil snapshots or long-term
soil trends.

Measurements Range Accuracy
SDI-12 RS485
Dielectric Constant 1 to 80 where 1 = air
80 = distilled water
± 1.5% or 0.2 whichever
is typically greater
Soil Moisture
for inorganic
& mineral soil
From completely dry to fully
± 0.01 WFV for most soils
± 0.03 max for for fi ne
textured soils
Conductivity 0.01 to 1.5 S/m ± 2.0% or 0.005 S/m
whichever is typically
Temperature* -10° to +55° C ± 0.1° C

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