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See detailOur soil map as cultural heritage: what of the Belgium soil survey project should be preserved and what is being lost?
Legrain, Xavier ULg; Dondeyne, Stefaan; Deckers, Jozef et al

Poster (2012, July 06)

Between 1947 and 1991, soils of Belgium were mapped to establish a systematic inventory of the country soil resources. Field observations were done by soil auger to a standard depth of 1.25 m and at a ... [more ▼]

Between 1947 and 1991, soils of Belgium were mapped to establish a systematic inventory of the country soil resources. Field observations were done by soil auger to a standard depth of 1.25 m and at a mean density of 2 points per hectare. Cadastral plans at scale 1:5,000 where used for georeferencing field observations and for delimiting map units, subsequently generalized on the 1:10,000 topographic base map. The final map was published on sheets at scale 1:20,000 along with descriptive texts. Besides, data on about 15,000 described and analyzed soil profiles were reported in technical annexes. With the advent of computers, data on soil profiles have been transfered into relational databases and soil sheets have been digitized. Coding of the data rendered them more accessible, but inevitably implied a standardization and hence a reduction of some information. Still most of the soil surveyors have already passed away, besides their intangible expert knowledge, a wealth of information is also being lost when their field notes, unpublished reports, minutes of meetings and draft maps are being disregarded. The map legend was developed during the first decade of the survey, reflecting state of knowledge on soil formation and their relative importance for agricultural land-use in the 1950s. To guarantee that future generations will be able to appreciate the value and concepts underpinning the soil information, it is important that at least a minimum set of such historical documents would be preserved, analyzed and documented. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Belgium soil survey project: A heritage to preserve
Legrain, Xavier ULg; Dondeyne, Stefaan; Deckers, Jozef et al

Conference (2012, July 06)

Between 1947 and 1991, soils of Belgium were mapped to establish a systematic inventory of the country soil resources. Field observations were done by soil auger to a standard depth of 1.25 m and at a ... [more ▼]

Between 1947 and 1991, soils of Belgium were mapped to establish a systematic inventory of the country soil resources. Field observations were done by soil auger to a standard depth of 1.25 m and at a mean density of 2 points per hectare. Cadastral plans at scale 1:5,000 where used for georeferencing field observations and for delimiting map units, subsequently generalized on the 1:10,000 topographic base map. The final map was published on sheets at scale 1:20,000 along with descriptive texts. Besides, data on about 15,000 described and analyzed soil profiles were reported in technical annexes. With the advent of computers, data on soil profiles have been transfered into relational databases and soil sheets have been digitized. Coding of the data rendered them more accessible, but inevitably implied a standardization and hence a reduction of some information. Still most of the soil surveyors have already passed away, besides their intangible expert knowledge, a wealth of information is also being lost when their field notes, unpublished reports, minutes of meetings and draft maps are being disregarded. The map legend was developed during the first decade of the survey, reflecting state of knowledge on soil formation and their relative importance for agricultural land-use in the 1950s. To guarantee that future generations will be able to appreciate the value and concepts underpinning the soil information, it is important that at least a minimum set of such historical documents would be preserved, analyzed and documented. [less ▲]

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See detailDaytime 50 Hz Magnetic Field Exposure and Plasma Melatonin and Urinary 6-Sulfatoxymelatonin Concentration Profiles in Humans
Crasson, Marion ULg; Beckers, Véronique; Pequeux, Christel ULg et al

in Journal of Pineal Research (2001), 31(3), 234-41

Concern about the health effects of extremely low frequency (ELF) magnetic fields (MF) has been raised by epidemiological studies indicating an association between certain cancers and living near power ... [more ▼]

Concern about the health effects of extremely low frequency (ELF) magnetic fields (MF) has been raised by epidemiological studies indicating an association between certain cancers and living near power lines or working in high electric field environments. Alterations in pineal function have been proposed as a mechanism through which power-frequency MFs may interact with living organisms. A double blind laboratory study was performed to evaluate daytime exposure effects of 100 microT root mean square (rms) 50 Hz MF. Three head exposure sessions of 30 min each were performed: sham, continuous, and intermittent (15 s on/off cycles) MFs were presented to each subject in early or late afternoon (13:30 or 16:30 hr). Twenty-one healthy male volunteers (20-27 yr old) participated in these 3-weekly experimental conditions. Blood samples were drawn for serum melatonin measurement, hourly at night (from 20:00 to 07:00 hr) under controlled environmental conditions. Urinary excretion of 6-sulfatoxymelatonin (aMT6s), the main melatonin metabolite, was measured for a 17 hr period, by means of urine samples taken at 19:00 hr (14:00-19:00 hr "afternoon period"), 23:00 hr (19:00-23:00 hr "evening period"), and 07:00 hr, day 2 (23:00-07:00 hr day 2 "night-time period"). There were no significant differences in either plasma melatonin or in aMT6s excretion profiles in the three experimental conditions. However, a tendency for a smaller increase of night-time urinary aMT6s after continuous MF exposure was found (P=0.08) particularly in men with the lower excretion rate of aMT6s ("Low Group") (P=0.07). We conclude that this study does not indicate that daytime acute MF exposure influences either melatonin secretion or aMT6s excretion. Inter-individual differences in pineal production of melatonin, however, have to be taken into account in further studies. [less ▲]

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