Essential Soil Physics

Hardback - November 2016 - AU $120.00

A comprehensive introduction to soil physical processes.

The book treats the physics of water, gas and heat movement in soils and interactions with the solid phase at various scales and other factors in detail – because these are considered the ultimate basis of any model of soil behaviour. Threats to soils worldwide ultimately endanger food security for a growing world population. Because of this, the effects of soil use and degradation on transport processes, soil stability and pore functions are discussed, and options for soil protection, conservation, and amelioration are addressed. + Full description

The authors close a gap between general soil science texts and very specialised treatments of foundation engineering by integrating the concepts of soil mechanics to achieve a comprehensive description of soil physical behaviour. Traditional soil physics topics, such as soil–water–plant relations, soil hydrology and gas, heat and field water cycles are complemented by soil rheology, physicochemical and amelioration sciences. Well-known and recent advances in analytical approaches and methods are well explained to be of use to persons interested in improving plant growth and optimising crop yield.

Essential Soil Physics is a valuable resource for researchers, upper-level undergraduate students, and graduate students of agronomy, soil science, horticulture, geosciences, environmental science, landscape architects and everybody interested in understanding the intricate physical processes which control and modify soil functions.

- Short description


Essential Soil Physics is published in conjunction with Schweizerbart Science Publishers.

Sales in Australia and New Zealand only. Elsewhere, this title is available through Schweizerbart Science Publishers.


Hardback | November 2016 | $120.00
ISBN: 9781486307272 | 392 pages | 240 x 170 mm
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Illustrations, Tables


  • Closes a gap between general soil science texts and very specialised treatments of soil physical behaviour
  • Provides detail necessary for understanding soil mechanical properties
  • Explains well-known and recent advances in analytical methods
  • Each chapter contains problems to test the understanding of the reader



1. Grain size distribution: texture
2. Soil structure and structural functions
3. Mechanical and hydraulic forces in soils
4. Interactions between water and soil
5. Distribution and hydrostatics of soil water
6. Movement of water within the soil
7. The gas-phase of soils
8. Thermal behaviour of soils
9. Combined water-, heat and gas budget of soils
10. Plant habitats and their physical modification
11. Soil erosion
12. Solute transport and filter processes in soils
13. Future perspectives of soil physics
14. References
15. Commonly used units and conversion factors
16. Meaning of abbreviations


Robert Horton, Department of Agronomy, Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA

Rainer Horn, University of Kiel, Institute of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Kiel, Germany

Jörg Bachmann, Leibniz University, Department of Soil Sciences, Hannover, Germany

Stephan Peth, University of Kassel, Department of Soil Science, Witzenhausen, Germany