3D Analysis: Soil Types

Assigning the correct soil type is essential for any depth measurement. The provided soil types in Visualizer 3D Studio are defined with special soil characteristics like dielectric constant, relative permeability, mineralization and humidity. All those parameters are necessary to calculate the approximate depth of potential targets within the scan images.

Click the Soil Type Button button on the Right Sidebar to toggle the Soil Type Panel that is shown in figure 1.

Soil Type Panel
Figure 1: Soil Type Panel

On top of the panel is a toolbar and right beneath is the list of all soil types (the soil type library). There are different categories of soil types:

  • OKM Standard Soil Types
    These soil types are OKM specific soil types that has been introduced with the first version of Visualizer 3D.

  • USDA Soil Types (only Professional Edition)
    This soil type taxonomy has been developed by the United States Department of Agriculture and the National Cooperative Soil Survey.

  • OKM GPR Soil Types (only Professional Edition)
    These soil types are based on the OKM Gepard GPR soil types (optimized for ground penetrating radar).

  • User Defined Soil Types (only Professional Edition)
    This is the place where your own and individual soil types are located. Read section Adding and editing soil types to learn how to create your very own soil type definition!

  • Temporary Soil Types
    This category is only used if you open scan images that contain soil types that are not defined in your own library.

The toolbar contains the following buttons:

Add Soil Type Add Soil Type (only Professional Edition)
Push this button to add a new soil type into the library. Read section Adding and editing soil types for more details!
Edit Soil Type Edit Soil Type (only Professional Edition)
Push this button to change the parameters of the selected soil type. Read section Adding and editing soil types for more details!
Delete Soil Type Delete Soil Type (only Professional Edition)
Push this button to delete the selected soil type from your library.
Refresh List Refresh List
Push this button to reload the list of soil types in case it got out of sync.


Adding and editing soil types

All users of the Professional Edition of Visualizer 3D Studio have the possibility to add and edit own soil types with very specific and individual soil characteristics. After clicking the Add Soil Type button or the Edit Soil Type button, the Soil Type Dialog from figure 2 will appear on screen.

Soil Type Dialog - General
Figure 2: Soil Type Dialog - General

In the first step you must define all the important general soil parameters:

  • Title
    Here you can enter the name of the soil type you are going to define.

  • Category
    You can only add new soil types into the category User Defined Soil Types.

  • Notes
    Use this text field to enter any additional information that might be of interest regarding the soil type.

  • Dielectric Constant
    The Dielectric Constant is a measure of the conductivity of electric fields. The higher the value, the lower the penetration depth. This is particularly relevant for scans with the Ground Penetrating Radar.

  • Relative Permeability
    In electromagnetism, permeability is the measure of magnetization that a material obtains in response to an applied magnetic field.

  • Mineralization
    This value defines the mineralization (the metal content) of the underground in percent. Higher values will reduce the depth indication.

  • Humidity
    This value defines the humidity of the underground in percent. Higher values will reduce the depth indication.

  • Homogeneity
    This value defines the regularity and compactness of the underground. Higher values will increase the depth indication.

After defining the general information, you may also assign textures to your soil type. In figure 3 the corresponding settings of the Soil Type Dialog are shown.

Soil Type Dialog - Images
Figure 3: Soil Type Dialog - Images

There are three textures that can be assigned to your individual soil type:

  • Thumbnail (A)
    This texture is used to represent the soil type in the soil type library.

  • Surface (B)
    This texture is used on top of each scan image to represent the ground surface and its structure.

  • Cross Section (C)
    This texture is used to represent the cross section (depth level) of the scan image.

In figure 4 all the mentioned textures are indicated once more to understand the final place where the textures are applied to.

Soil Type Textures
Figure 4: Soil Type Textures

The more precise your selected soil type matches your scan area, the more accurate your depth measurement will be. All the standard soil types that are defined in Visualizer 3D Studio representing the general average of the worlds soil types. If you want to make more accurate depth measurements you must define individual soil types.

Without the proper soil type settings the depth measurement will be inaccurately.