Spatio-Temporal High-Resolution Subsoil Compaction Risk Assessment for a 5-Years Crop Rotation at Regional Scale
Soil compaction results whenever applied soil stress by machinery exceed the soil
strength. Both, soil strength and stress, are spatially and temporally highly variable,
depending on the weather situation, the current crop type, and the machinery used.
Thus, soil compaction risk is very dynamic, changes from day to day and from ﬁ eld to ﬁ eld.
The objective of this study was to analyze the spatio-temporal dynamics of soil compaction
risk and to identify hot-spot areas of high soil compaction risk at regional scale. Therefore,
we selected a study area (~2,000 km) with intensive arable farming in Northern Germany,
having a high share of cereals, maize and sugar beets. Sentinel-2 images were used to
derive the crop types for a 5-years crop rotation (2016 – 2020). We calculated the soil
compaction risk using an updated version of the SaSCiA-model (Spatially explicit Soil
Compaction risk Assessment) for each single day of the period, with a spatial resolution of
20 m. The results showed the dynamic changes of soil compaction risk within a year and
throughout the entire crop rotation. The relatively dry years 2016 and 2018 – 2020 reduced
the soil compaction risk even at high wheel loads applied to soil during maize and sugar
beet harvest. Contrary, high precipitation in 2017 increased the soil compaction risk