Leaf wetness

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Leaf wetness is a meteorological parameter that describes the amount of dew and precipitation left on surfaces. It is used for monitoring leaf moisture for agricultural purposes, such as fungus and disease control, for control of irrigation systems, and for detection of fog and dew conditions, and early detection of rainfall.[1]

Leaf wetness may be measured by various means:[2][3]

  • By change in electrical resistance between two metal conductors in an alternate finger[4] or double spiral[5] configuration on a flat surface, either flat or cylindrical.[6] The conductors are usually gold plated for corrosion resistance. An issue with this method is that measurements depend on droplets being large enough to bridge the gap between the conductors. A surface coating of for instance hygroscopic latex paint may be applied for more consistent results.[7][8][9] Resistance measurement is often by alternating current excitation.[10]
  • By measuring the change in the dielectric constant of the surface of a sensor, thus detecting the presence of water or ice on the sensor's surface.[11]
  • A sensor with hygroscopic properties where a change in sensor length or weight can be measured mechanically.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Leaf Surface Wetness Duration Home Page, Cornell University
  2. ^ Types of sensors, The Leaf Surface Wetness Duration Home Page
  3. ^ Some leaf wetness sensors, Campbell Scientific
  4. ^ Resistance type sensor Archived 2010-11-02 at the Wayback Machine, Davis Instruments
  5. ^ Double spiral configuration Archived 2005-06-19 at the Wayback Machine, ICT International
  6. ^ A comparison of cylindrical and flat plate sensors for surface wetness duration: Gillespie T.J., Duan R.X., 1987. Agric For Meteorol 40: 61-70.
  7. ^ Do you measure leaf wetness?, Decagon Devices
  8. ^ Effects of coating, deployment angle, and compass orientation on performance of electronic wetness sensors during dew periods: Lau, Y.F., Gleason, M.L., Zriba, N., Taylor, S.E., Hinz, P.N., 2000. Plant Disease 84:192-197.
  9. ^ Electronic leaf wetness duration sensor: why it should be painted: Sentelhas, P.C., Monteiro, J.E., Gillespie, T.J., 2004. Int J Biometeorol 48: 202-205.
  10. ^ Leaf Wetness Sensor, LWET
  11. ^ Dielectric Leaf Wetness Sensor Archived 2011-07-08 at the Wayback Machine, Campbell Scientific