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Cecilie Hermansen


Cecilie Hermansen


Project title: Detection of vulnerable areas towards pesticide leaching: Use of spectroscopic techniques to predict soil functional parameters at field scale

Project description: Danish groundwater resources are widely affected by pesticide leaching from agricultural activities. It is of great concern to detect which groundwater reservoirs are vulnerable towards pesticide leaching, so this can be taken into account in e.g. agricultural field management practices and thereby prevent further contamination. In order to detect which groundwater reservoirs are of risk of contamination with pesticides and other contaminants, a thorough evaluation of soil characteristics at the particular field sites is required. Soil is highly heterogeneous, and soil properties affecting transport and fate of pollutants can vary with several orders of magnitude within fields. Therefore one particular field may not necessarily be generalized with regards to soil properties. Though, measurements of soil properties with conventional laboratory analysis are time consuming, and detailed mapping of soil properties at field scale is expensive.

Spectroscopic methods are widely recognized as a potential replacement of conventional laboratory methods, because they are fast and can quantify several soil properties within a few minutes. Therefore, my research is mainly focused on the application of visible near-infrared spectroscopy to evaluate soil functional parameters related to pesticide and PAH sorption characteristics, fine minerals complexation by organic carbon and hydraulic properties.

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