Facilities

The Applied Soil Ecology Lab is well-equipped for research in the field and lab. Its students and personnel also have access to and regularly use Department of Soil Science equipment and Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences facilities.

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Field Equipment
Gas, Soil, & Plant Chemistry Equipment
Soil Ecology & Molecular Biology Equipment
Department of Soil Science Facilities
Research Stations and Teaching Facilities

Applied Soil Ecology Lab Facilities

Field Equipment

The Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s UAV specialist Matt Gervais launches the DJI Matrice 100 Quadcopter Drone over a corn field where he will capture canopy reflectance using the mounted MicaSense Red Edge 5-channel camera © Krista Hanis-Gervais
  • DJI Matrice 100 Quadcopter Drone with a mounted MicaSense Red Edge 5-channel camera
  • Multi-spectral active reflectance sensor for NDRE computation (CropCircle 470, Holland Scientific Inc.)
  • Active reflectance sensor for NDVI computation (Trimble GreenSeeker handheld crop sensor)
  • Passive reflectance sensor (Multi-spectral camera)
  • Tunable diode laser for flux-gradient estimation of N2O and CO2 from soil (Campbell TGAS100A)
  • 3-D Sonic Anemometers (Campbell CSAT3)
  • Open Path CO2 Gas Analyzer (Li-7500, LI-COR Biosciences)
  • Open Path CH4 Gas Analyzer (Li-7700, LI-COR Biosciences)
  • RM Young Wind Speed and Direction Monitor
  • Campbell Scientific weather stations including
    • Air temperature and relative humidity sensors (HMP45C and HMP60, Vaisala Inc.)
    • Tipping bucket rain gauge (TR-525M Rainfall Sensor, The Texas Instruments, Inc.)
  • Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) system (Gasmet DX 4015)
  • Flow through steady-state chambers
Technician Megan monitors the Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) system (Gasmet DX 4015) as it analyzes greenhouse gas emissions from a manure pile via a flow through steady-state chamber © Krista Hanis-Gervais
  • Automated Soil CO2 Flux System (Li-8100A, LI-COR Biosciences)
  • Quantum cascade-ICOS Fast Response Methane Analyzer (Los Gatos RMT200)
  • Field-portable gas chromatograph (Varian CP4900 Micro-GC)
  • Raven AccuFlow condenser and Sidekick unit (Raven Industries) for application of anhydrous ammonia
Department of Soil Science John Deere tractor and R-Tech Industries Ltd. JT-AB “Thor” plot seeder outfitted with Bourgault Mid-Row disk-style banders (Bourgault Industries Ltd.) towing the Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s Sidekick unit and Raven AccuFlow condenser for anhydrous ammonia application. Also visible are two static-vented chambers used for sampling field gas emissions ©Mario Tenuta
  • Toolbar for in-season liquid fertilizer application capable of mid row injection or foliar dribble band
  • More than 500 static-vented chambers for gas sampling
  • Passive dosimeter chambers for gas sampling
  • Manual Dutch auger and BackSaver soil corers
  • ECH2O soil moisture probes
  • Temperature probes
  • Data loggers (CR1000X) and multiplexers
  • Covered and insulated trailers

Gas, Soil, & Plant Chemistry Equipment

  • Automated triple-detector gas chromatographs for greenhouse gas analysis (Varian 3800)
One of the Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s gas chromatoraphs, loaded with 200 samples for analysis ©Marliese Peterson
  • Dual-channel ion chromatography system (Dionex ICS-1000) and autosampler (Dionex AS40 Automated Sampler) for cation, anion and volatile fatty acid analyses
  • Combustion analyzer (Varion Max Cube CNS, Elementar)
The Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s combustion analyzer (Varion Max Cube CNS, Elemtar)
©Marliese Peterson
  • Automatic grain moisture meter (Dimo’s Tool & Die Ltd. Labtronics® Model 919® Automatic Moisture Meter)
  • UV-visible spectrophotometer with long path optical sensing tube
  • Microbial-biomass chloroform fumigation apparatus
  • Lab bench drying ovens
  • Upright and shaker incubators
  • Bench-top centrifuges and floor standing centrifuge
  • Oil redox and oxygen-diffusion probes and meters

Soil Ecology & Molecular Biology Equipment

  • PCR clean bench (600 PCR Workstation, AirClean® Systems)
The Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s PCR clean bench (600 PCR Workstation, AirClean® Systems) ©Marliese Peterson
  • Conventional and real time PCR instruments
    • CFX96 Touch™ Real-Time PCR Detection System (BIO-RAD)
    • Mastercycler™ pro PCR System (Eppendorf)
    • T100™ Thermal Cycler (BIO-RAD)
Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s PCR systems (left to right: CFX96 Touch™ Real-Time PCR Detection System (BIO-RAD), Mastercycler™ pro PCR System (Eppendorf), T100™ Thermal Cycler (BIO-RAD)) ©Marliese Peterson
  • Gel electrophoresis systems and imaging (Syngene G:BOX)
  • Full-spectrum, UV-Vis spectrophotometer (NanoDrop™ 2000 Spectrophotometer, Thermo Scientific)
  • Bead beaters (Mini-Beadbeater, Biospec Products)
  • Micro-centrifuge (IEC Microlite Microcentrifuge, Thermo Electron) and combined centrifuge/vortex mixer (PCV-2400, Grant-bio)
  • Autoclave
  • Laminar flow hoods
  • Incubators
    • Water Bath (Isotemp™ Digital 2320 Water Bath, Fisher Scientific)
    • Dry Bath (Isotemp™ Digital Dry Bath, Fisher Scientific)
  • Laboratory blender
  • Fluorescence microscope (OLYMPUS BX51) with high resolution FireWire™ Digital CCD color camera (OLYMPUS Q-Color3™) and QCapture software
The Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s fluorescence microscope (OLYMPUS BX51) with high resolution FireWire™ Digital CCD color camera (OLYMPUS Q-Color3™) ©Marliese Peterson
  • Bright-field compound, dissecting, and inverted microscopes
  • Baermann-funnel and Berlese Tullgren equipment
  • USDA soil nematode cyst extractor
PhD candidate Nazanin using the Applied Soil Ecology Lab’s USDA soil nematode cyst extractor.

Departmental of Soil Science Facilities

  • Agronomic field operation equipment including
    • Tractors (John Deere 5410 and John Deere 1050)
    • Seeder: R-Tech Industries Ltd. JT-AB “Thor” plot seeder outfitted with Bourgault Mid-Row disk-style banders (Bourgault Industries Ltd.) capable of variable rate granular, liquid, and anhydrous ammonia application
    • Planter: John Deere MaxEmerge 1755 four row vacuum planter with 2″ x 2″ side banders, modified for variable rate granular and liquid fertilizer application
    • Three point hitch plot sprayer with T-jet nozzle bodies and 300 L tank for pesticide application
    • Three point hitch rotovator
    • Three point hitch mower
    • Tractor mounted hydraulic corer (Giddings Machine Company)
    • Compost turner (Brown Bear Corporation)
    • Plot combine & thresher (mobile and stationary) (Classic, Wintersteiger Inc.) with a corn header and small grains header
Technician Megan harvesting corn with the Department of Soil Science’s Wintersteiger Classic plot combine and corn header ©Lanny Gardiner
  • Technicon Autoanalyzer II Systems for soil nutrients (NH4+, NO3, Acid-P, DOC, SO4, and urea)
  • Inductively coupled plasma emission spectrophotometer (Varian ICP)
  • Total carbon and nitrogen analyzers (LECO)
  • Walk-in refrigerator (4°C) and freezer (-20°C)
  • Lab freezer (-80°C)
  • Soil and plant drying room (~48°C)
  • Plant biomass drying oven
  • Freeze dryer
  • Walk-in grow room / incubator
  • Dedicated and ventilated plant grinding room (Thomas Wiley Laboratory Mill Model 4)
  • Dedicated and ventilated soil grinding room (Rolling Mill, Soil Grinder, and Ball Mill)
  • Root washer
  • Reach-in growth cabinets
  • Floor centrifuges
  • Muffle furnace
  • Acid digestion system for Kjeldahl digests (Weston Block Digester)
  • Ultra pure water system (deionized water)
  • Total station GPS
  • 4×4 field trucks (automatic drive)
  • Trailers for hauling equipment
Department of Soil Science field truck ©Marliese Peterson

Research Stations and Teaching Facilities

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Welcome to the Applied Soil Ecology Lab at the University of Manitoba