Application of Multivariate Geostatistics in Delineating Management Zones within a Gravelly Vineyard using Geo-electrical Sensors

…in Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, Volume 68, Issue 1 (August 2009)…

F. Morari, A. Castrignanò, and C. Pagliarin

“In gravelly soils, surveys are generally time-consuming, labour-intensive and costly. This limits the possibility of adopting an appropriate sampling to determine within-field spatial variability. The potential use of electro-magnetic induction scans (EMI) to measure apparent electrical conductivity (EC) and improve the estimate accuracy of sparsely sampled primary variables was assessed in a 5-ha gravelly soil vineyard in Valpolicella, north-eastern Italy. EC was measured using a Geonics EM38DD operating in both horizontal and vertical mode. Geo-electrical investigations were also done in 18 positions with the electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) method to obtain high-resolution images of the soil profile. The spatial variability of soil properties and their relationships with EC in horizontal and vertical mode was estimated using multivariate geostatistical techniques. Spatial dependence between EC and physical soil properties (particle-size distribution) was explored with factorial kriging analysis (FKA) that could isolate and display sources of variation acting at different spatial scales, expressed as regionalised factors, which was followed by fuzzy c-means classification for zoning the vineyard. There was a generally close relationship between EC and the measured physical properties: EC was negatively correlated with the coarser texture components (gravel and sand) and positively with the finer ones (clay and silt). EC measurements were also consistent with ERT profiles, evidencing the presence of gravelly parent material, with low electrical conductivity, variably distributed in the 3 dimensions and affecting vine rooting depth. FKA isolated two significant regionalised factors which, with an acceptable loss of information, give a concise description of the soil physical variability at the different selected spatial scales. These factors, used in fuzzy c-means classification, allowed the delineation of zones to be managed separately. The results prove that EM38DD could be advantageously used to map soil spatial variability in gravelly soils, even if ground-truth soil samples are obligatory to understand and interpret the EC measurements.”

GIS Innovators in Health and Human Services Honored

Innovators in the use of geographic information system (GIS) technology in the health and human services fields received recognition from GIS software company ESRI recently. The Service, Vision, and Communication awards are announced annually during the ESRI Health GIS Conference, which was held September 21–23 this year in Nashville, Tennessee.

The Service Award was presented to Stephanie Bailey, M.D., M.S., chief of the Office of Public Health Practice, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The award recognizes individuals who do an outstanding job of advocating GIS technology and helping others understand its value and purpose in their everyday work.

“Stephanie Bailey is currently helping set public health practice standards and is a great friend of GIS,” said Bill Davenhall, global marketing manager for health and human services solutions, ESRI, as he presented the award. He added, “Behind every good leader are loyal followers—people who trust where the leader is heading—and she has a long history of public health competence at all levels, from the local to the state to the federal.”

Health InfoTechnics, LLC, of Brentwood, Tennessee, received the Vision Award, which honors organizations that use GIS in innovative ways. Health InfoTechnics supports health planning initiatives by providing market intelligence and support to hospitals, hospital systems, consultants, and investors. The company recently developed EnvisionHIT, a platform based on ESRI’s ArcGIS Server software, which delivers a robust, interactive, and intuitive visual environment for researching and viewing market data.

“Health InfoTechnics has taken a leap forward in meeting the community health information needs of the customers and, in doing so, has improved the spatial literacy of America’s health care system,” said Davenhall.

The Communication Award for excellence in map presentation, visualization, and communication went to three public health services professionals in Saskatoon Health Region, Canada. They are Tracy Creighton, GIS analyst, Public Health Observatory; Daphne Goodman-Eifler, supervisor of Tobacco Reduction Strategies; and Tanya Dunn-Pierce, manager, Health Promotion Department. The poster, Mapping the Availability of Tobacco Products to Youth in the City of Saskatoon, tells the story of using GIS to convert school health survey results into information that will help health officials develop policies for reducing tobacco use among middle school students. The study examined the locations of tobacco retailers near schools and used statistical analysis to identify potential correlations with student-reported smoking initiation rates. Maps displayed an overall view of the results.

For more information on GIS in health and human services and the ESRI Health GIS Conference, visit

[Source:  ESRI news release]

Application of Three-Dimensional Geologic Models in Developing Groundwater-Flow Models

….from the 2009 Three-Dimensional Geologic Mapping Workshop held by the Illinois State Geological Survey…

Claudia C. Faunt, Donald Sweetkind, and Randall T. Hanson

“Three-dimensional (3D) geologic models have been used to define the geologic framework of complex regional aquifer systems. These models define the stratigraphy and structure of lithologic units using data points defined by surface contacts, drill-hole data, and (or) geophysical data. Where data are missing, data points are derived from known data points on the basis of geologic principles. In recent years, 3D geologic models have been used to define the model domain and hydraulic properties of regional 3D groundwater-flow models. This paper illustrates how 3D geologic models were used to describe the geologic framework and provide the basis for groundwater-flow simulations of the Central Valley aquifer system in California and the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system (DVRFS) in Nevada and California. The groundwater availability of the Central Valley of California is being assessed as part of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) groundwater availability program (Faunt 2009). The Death Valley regional groundwater flow system (DVRFS), which contains the Nevada Test Site and Yucca Mountain, is being studied in cooperation with the Department of Energy (Belcher 2004). The geologic conditions and groundwater use in the Central Valley and the Death Valley regions are quite different, providing an opportunity to compare the 3D geologic modeling approach in two different geohydrologic regimes.”

UTSA Research Sheds Light on Central Texas Geology and Climate Change

…from USTA Today

“Research projects by Stuart Birnbaum, University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) associate professor of geological sciences, and Daniel Lupton, a UTSA master’s student in geological sciences, reveal new information about Central Texas’ climate and water sources.

“Birnbaum’s team researched the ancient climate preserved in the chemical signature of samples from Kimble County, Texas, by taking rock samples from a 12-meter cliff exposure of the Hensel paleosol, an ancient soil estimated to be approximately 112 million years old.”

GIS and West Nile Virus: A Bibliography

Alborino, G.  2003.  Halton Region’s West Nile Virus Information System.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2003.

Bangs, C. 2003.  GIS-enabled Surveillance System for West Nile Virus Neurological Syndromes.  ESRI Health Conference Proceedings 2003.

Bauer, C., and Gallagher, T.  2003.  The Incorporation of GIS Into a Local Mosquito Control Program.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2003.

Clennon, J., Kitron, U., Lippold, A., McTighe, T., Norris, D., and Ruiz, M.  2004.  West Nile Virus in Illinois—2001 and 2002.  ESRI Map Book Volume 19.

Conrad, E.  2001.  Tracking Mosquitoes Technology.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2001.

Conrad, E.  2001.  Tracking Diseases with GIS.  ArcUser July – September 2001.

Egbert, M.  2004.  Web-Based Disease Tracking: A West Nile Virus Example.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2004.

ESRI.  2005.  Mobile GIS Enhances Prevention and Response for Texas County.  ArcUser April – June 2005.

ESRI.  2009.  HL7 and Spatial Interoperability Standards for Public Health and Health Care Delivery.  ESRI White Paper January 2009.

Fraser, M., Mak, S., Furnell, A., and Henry, B.  2008.  Using Surveillance of Mosquito Populations to Assess Larval Mosquito Control.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2008.

Gibbs, K.  2004.  Comprehensive GIS Application for West Nile Virus Surveillance.  ESRI Health Conference Proceedings 2004.

Hailey, C.  2005.  GIS for Integrated Pest Management.  ESRI Health Conference Proceedings 2005.

Hamer, G., Kitron, U., Goldberg, T., Brawn, J., Loss, S., Ruiz, M., Hayes, D., and Walker, E. 2009.  Host Selection by Culex pipiens Mosquitoes and West Nile Virus Amplification.  Am J Trop Med Hyg, Feb 2009.

Harten, H., and Piaskoski, A.  2008.  West Nile Virus Surveillance.  ESRI Health Conference Proceedings 2008.

Henriques, W., and Raziano, T.  2004.  Using Geospatial Technology for Public Health Preparedness.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2004.

Leblond, A., Sandoz, A., Lefebvre, G., Zellerc, H., and Bicout, D.J. 2007.  Remote sensing based identification of environmental risk factors associated with West Nile disease in horses in Camargue, France .  Preventive Veterinary Medicine Volume 79, Issue 1, 16 April 2007.

Minter, M.  2005.  Developing a GIS-Based West Nile Virus Infection Model.  ArcUser January – March 2005.

Nielsen, C., Armijos, M., Wheeler, S., Carpenter, T., Boyce, W., Kelley, K., Brown, D., Scott,  T., and Reisen, W.  2008.  Risk Factors Associated with Human Infection during the 2006 West Nile Virus Outbreak in Davis, a Residential Community in Northern California.  Am J Trop Med Hyg, Jan 2008.

Rochlin, I., Ginsberg, H., and Campbell, S.  2009.  Distribution and Abundance of Host-seeking Culex Species at Three Proximate Locations with Different Levels of West Nile Virus Activity.  Am J Trop Med Hyg, Apr 2009.

Ruiz, M., Brown, W., and Clennon, J.  2006.  Weather Conditions and West Nile Virus in Illinois.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2006.

Shuai, J.  2006.  Integrated Real-Time West Nile Virus Surveillance Pilot in Canada.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2006.

Stoto, M., Cheung, I., Estrada, L., Foster, V., Mele, L., and Smith, M.  2001.  Coordinated Regional Surveillance for West Nile Virus in Metropolitan Washington.  ESRI Health Conference Proceedings 2001.

Villa, P.  2004.  Fight the Bite With GIS.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2004.

Wilbur, B., and Mundt, J.  2007.  Vector Borne Disease Surveillance using ArcWeb Services.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2007.

Wraight, K, and Arnold, N.  2005.  West Nile in Washtenaw.  ESRI International User Conference Proceedings 2005.

Winters, A., Eisen, R., Lozano-Fuentes, S., Moore, C., Pape, W., and Eisen, L.  2008.  Predictive Spatial Models for Risk of West Nile Virus Exposure in Eastern and Western Colorado.  Am J Trop Med Hyg, Oct 2008.

Winters, A., Staples, J., Ogen-Odoi, A., Mead, P., Griffith, K., Owor, N., Babi, N., Enscore, R., Eisen, L., Gage, K., and Eisen, R.  2009.  Spatial Risk Models for Human Plague in the West Nile Region of Uganda.  Am J Trop Med Hyg, Jun 2009.

MidAmerica GIS Consortium (MAGIC) Seeks GIS Service, GIS Coordination, and GIS Innovation Award Nominations

“Do you know someone who has made a significant difference in GIS? If you do, please nominate them for a MAGIC 2010 Award! Nominees for these awards may be individuals, groups or entities. Using the online nomination form, nominators should clearly outline the nature of the contribution being honored. The awards are voted on by members of the MAGIC Symposium Committee, and presented at the Symposium opening session on April 20th, 2010. Categories include GIS Service, GIS Coordination, and GIS Innovation. Nominations for the 2010 MidAmerica GIS Symposium must be received no later than January 8, 2010.”

Map of the Day: For the Love of the Lake, Historic Lakeshore Communities

…from the ESRI Map Book, Volume 24


“This map is part of a series of community maps of the town of Georgina produced by residents. Its purpose is to showcase what residents think is important about their neighborhoods and to help protect and enhance what is special. The map points out a nature reserve and a local stream, both important habitats for conservation.

“The Deer Park Road area is an important mature mixed forest providing habitat for a wide range of animals, birds, and amphibians. Private landowners in the area worked together with the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority to create the Arnold C. Matthews Nature Reserve in order to preserve and steward the land in perpetuity.

“Boyer’s Stream connects protected core lands and Lake Simcoe, providing habitat for waterfowl, amphibians, and marsh birds and a potential upstream fish spawning route.

“Courtesy of the Alliance for a Better Georgina.”