Water content

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Water content means the amount of water present in a porous substance, such as soil. This term is used in hydrogeology, soil science and soil mechanics. In saturated groundwater aquifers, all available spaces are filled with water. Above a capillary fringe, pore spaces have air in them too.

Gaps between soil particles are called pore spaces or voids. These voids contain various amounts of either water or air. Soil moisture content can be expressed in different basis:

  • Gravimetric: the mass of water/mass of solid material
  • Volumetric: the volume of soil/total porosity

The amount of void space within a soil depends on the distribution of particle sizes, and is quantified by soil porosity.

Soil moisture is the water stored in soil from after rain or melted snow soak into the ground. This water can be used by plants in a process called evapotranspiration or it can continue to move deeper into the ground to become part of the groundwater in a process called groundwater recharge.

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