In order to get some practical experience in terms of field work the EAGLE program offers an excursion to Demmin which is located in federal state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in North-East Germany. The test site is an intensively used agricultural ecosystem that has been established in 1999 with a close cooperation between the local farmers and the German Aerospace Center (DLR). Furthermore, since 2011 it is part of the TERENO observatory ‘North-East German Lowlands’ that is managed by the GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ) Potsdam. The young Pleistocene landscape which was formed approximately 10000 years ago by glaciers and melting waters is widely used for forestry and agriculture. Nowadays more than 65 soil moisture SPADE sensors and over 40 environmental measurement stations are managed by GFZ and DLR. Over the years a large number of data have been gathered and are now available (Truckenbrodt et al. 2018).
Students had the opportunity to collect different types of samples, e.g. measuring biophysical parameters like the Leaf Area Index using a LAI-2200 plant canopy analyzer (LI-COR). In addition to that the leaf chlorophyll content was measured through non-destructive absorbance measurements using a SPAD-502Plus chlorophyll meter. Other sampling tasks included measuring the soil moisture with a portable sensor, as well as taking actual soil and biomass samples which could be measured afterwards in the laboratory. Also, the surface roughness was estimated by using a pin profiler measurement. Students were provided with a field reader before the actual excursion so that they could prepare for the field work beforehand.
This field campaign offered EAGLE students an insight in the world of field work and the possibility to conduct measurements using various devices. Students learned to organize themselves and distribute the tasks in order to work efficiently. Furthermore, this excursion also strengthened the relationship of EAGLEs as a group which could be expressed through joint dinners and barbecue as well as other fun activities.
Reporting from the Student’s Board
Truckenbrodt, S. Hüttich, C., Borg, E., Ahmadian, N., Dahms, T., Heupel, K., Spengler, D., Conrad, C. (2018): “DEMMIN_2.0 – Combining in situ observations and remote sensing data – Field Reader”.