Zoom into Soil: Hidden Processes in Soil

Apr 14, 2021 | News

The British Society of Soil Science (BSSS) is delighted to announce the latest webinar in the lunchtime series of Zoom into Soil. Zoom into Soil: Hidden Processes in Soils, hosted by BSSS’ Northern Soil Network (NSN), will take place on Wednesday 12 May from 12.00 to 1.00pm and is free of charge for all delegates.

Zoom into Soil: Hidden Processes in Soils will feature Dr Carsten W. Müller, Associate Professor for Soil Science at the University of Copenhagen, and Dr Tinashe Mawodza, a Research Fellow at Nottingham University, with their presentations, Soil processes regulated at the microscale – using microscopy to zoom into soil and Demystifying secrets of the hidden half – an exploration of root-soil interactions using X-ray and neutron tomography.

In his presentation, Dr Carsten Müller will explain how soil’s capacity to store carbon and being a habitat for soil fauna and microorganisms are intricately linked. The decay of plant residues and the parallel build-up of soil organic matter happens at microscale sites within the complex 3D soil matrix. He will take you to these microscale hot spots and highlight the formation of soil organic matter at the interface of plants, microorganisms and soil minerals.

Research Fellow Dr Tinashe Mawodza will briefly describe how hidden root interactions with soil can be visualised and analysed at the micro- and macro- scale using complimentary imaging techniques. He will give examples of how this has been used to unravel previously unknown soil phenomena and share a few insights from his research within this field. Dr Mawodza will also outline challenges that may limit the deployment of these techniques in investigating soil processes at different scales.

To book a place at the seminar visit Go To Webinar:


BSSS will host their next webinar on 9 June, with further monthly dates and registration details to be announced.



Media Contact

Sarah Garry
Executive Officer
British Society of Soil Science

Email: exec@soils.org.uk

Notes for Editors

  • The British Society of Soil Science (BSSS) is an established international membership organisation and charity committed to the study of soil in its widest aspects. The society brings together those working within academia, and practitioners implementing soil science in industry. Soil scientists’ research findings are essential for investigating the feasibility of agricultural, landscaping, construction, conservation and archaeological projects. Our members are employed by both private and public sector institutions including academic universities, conservation charities, construction companies and consultancies.
  • Participants can register for the May seminar via the Go To Webinar link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/190278598075657485
  • Carsten W. Mueller is an Associate Professor for Soil Science in the Department of Geoscience and Natural Resource Management at the University of Copenhagen. His main scientific goal is to provide a better understanding of the fundamental biogeochemical connections between plants, microorganisms and soils in both managed and natural ecosystems from pore to field scale. He combines physical, biological and chemical analyses to gain a deeper understanding of energy and matter fluxes in the complex 3D soil structures that sustain soil functionality. One of his major research areas is the organic matter cycling and soil structure formation induced by plants. Since 2007, he expanded his work to imaging techniques and image analyses with a focus on the use of nano-scale secondary ion mass spectrometry (NanoSIMS) to study intact soil systems at the relevant process scale (µm-scale). He is increasingly studying how via their roots, plants regulate carbon sequestration, nutrient cycling and thus may foster reductions in soil greenhouse gas emissions. Results of this work are a crucial prerequisites to develop future sustainable agricultural management practices, that preserve soil health and productivity while increasing carbon storage.
  • Dr Tinashe Mawodza is currently a Research fellow at Nottingham University working on a project on Designing Future Wheat (DFW) where he investigates the genetic and environmental factors determining the ability of wheat roots to locate soil pores and elongate to depth. Previously Tinashe worked as a Research Associate at the University of Sheffield where he was part of a team investigating how to improve soil salinity and sodicity management by using sustainable irrigation practices in the Konya Plain of Turkey. He completed his PhD at the University of Sheffield where he focused on plant-soil interactions, investigating the impact of plant water use on root architecture and soil structure. He also has a Masters and Bachelor’s degrees in soil science from the University of Gent (Belgium) and University of Zimbabwe respectively. His main research focus is centred on exploring ways of improving global agricultural productivity without compromising environmental quality.
  • Recordings of the previous Zoom into Soil events are available on the BSSS YouTube page: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHHciYt47RFZLqcQ6QGkjxg.
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