Time Domain Reflectometry
Time domain reflectometery (TDR) is used to measure the moisture content of both turf and dirt tracks. This is a low cost tool that is used on a daily basis for management of the moisture content of the racing surface. The choice of a TDR probe for moisture is based on extensive research done by the department of agriculture in the USA (USDA) where they compared moisture monitoring tools. A TDR probe can be easily carried by hand, in a truck or on a 4-wheeler around the track to test the moisture and provide a standard map of the testing.
For racing we recommend the FieldScout TDR 300 Soil Moisture Meter. The unit should be specified with the 3 inch pins and the USB to 3.5 mm stereo plug adaptor as shown below.
Once the unit has been received the data logger can be configured to save the data to storage on the unit which can then be uploaded to the Maintenance Quality System database (link to demo) or any other plotting or tracking system. The upload tool for the FieldScout TDR is available at no cost from our web site. The Maintenance Quality System is then used for the creation of temporal (see below) and spatial plots of the variation in moisture content.
The uploader tool can be downloaded here.