Visualizing biogeochemical heterogeneity in soils and sediments: A review of advanced micro-scale sampling and imaging methods

Cai Li, Shiming Ding, Musong Chen, Zhilin Zhong, Qin Sun & Yan Wang
For soils and sediments, which are complex and heterogeneous, root-triggered processes, bioturbation of benthic communities, and local decomposition of reactive organic materials can greatly increase their biogeochemical heterogeneity. In practice, common monitoring methods can only be used to determine the centimeter- to millimeter-scale heterogeneity from vertical or horizontal one-dimensional profiles. However, significant heterogeneity exists in both soils and sediments on the millimeter to sub-millimeter scales. Therefore, in-situ and high-resolution sampling and imaging methods are essential...
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