Soil Respiration 

short-term measurements of soil respiration and water loss in field conditions


The Q-Box SR1LP Soil Respiration Package is designed for short-term measurements of soil respiration and water loss in field conditions. Measurements of soil temperature and soil moisture plus atmospheric pressure are also performed with this package. The battery pack, included with the package provides approximately 11 hours of field use. Soil samples can also be assessed back in the lab when placed in a flow-through chamber.



Soil chamber

Soil chamber

Soil respiration is measured as the rate of CO2 accumulation by the Q-S151 CO2 Analyzer. Soil respiration may be measured in situ with a soil chamber placed over the soil in the field. Samples of soil may be brought back to the lab and measured in a flow-through chamber for CO2 production. In addition to soil respiration, Q-Box SR1LP package allows measurements of soil temperature with the S132 temperature probe and water loss from the soil with the S161 Temperature/Relative Humidity sensor. Soil moisture is measured with the S135 Soil Moisture Sensor. The flow through the system is monitored by the Q-G266 Flow Monitor. An absolute pressure sensor provides measurements of atmospheric pressure. The Analog signals from all of the sensors and analyzers are converted to digital signals via two integrated LabQuest mini-interfaces and one single USB interface for a total of 7 channels. Data is displayed, recorded, and manipulated on a PC or Macintosh computer using Logger Pro software.

There are many other potential applications for Q-Box SR1LP package both in open flow and closed gas exchange systems. For example, it can be used to measure CO2 exchange from any organism or sample maintained in a flow-through chamber. In addition, it can be used to examine respiration or fermentation in aqueous suspensions when air or N2 is bubbled through the suspension and the outflow gas is analyzed using the CO2 Analyzer. Provided that CO2 production rates are in the correct range, the package can be used to measure CO2 production of virtually any biological system.


  • Self-contained gas analysis system for in situ soil respiration measurements
  • Measurements of CO2 exchange of any organism in a flow-through system
  • Modular system with interchangeable components
  • Housed in a rugged case for easy transport and field use
  • Battery pack for 11hr of field operation included


  • Soil Respiration measurements in situ, or from samples brought back to the lab and placed in a flow-through chamber
  • CO2 exchange measurements of organisms placed in the flow-through chamber
  • Head Space measurements of CO2 (fermentation studies, bacterial respiration)
  • Environmental monitoring (CO2, RH, Temp, Soil moisture, Atmospheric Pressure measurements)


  1. Robertson LM et al (2020) Geochemical and mineralogical changes in magnetite Fe-ore tailings induced by biomass organic matter amendment. Science of the total Environment 724: 138196
  2. Tomar U, Baishya R (2020) Seasonality and moisture regime control soil respiration, enzyme activities, and soil microbial biomass carbon in a semi-arid forest of Delhi, India.  Ecological Processes 9: Article number: 50
  3. Prasad S, Baishya R (2019) Interactive effects of soil moisture and temperature on soil respiration under native and non-native tree species in semi-arid forest of Delhi, India. Tropical Ecology 60: 252-260
  4. You F, Dalal R, Huang L (2018) Biochar and biomass organic amendments shaped different dominance of lithoautotrophs and organoheterotrophs in microbial communities colonizing neutral copper (Cu)-molybdenum (Mo-gold (Au) tailings.  Geoderma 309 100-110
  5. Smorkalov IA, Vorobeichik EL (2015) The impact of a large industrial city on the soil respiration in forest ecosystems. Eurasian Soil Science 48:106-114
  6. Li X et al (2015) Establishing microbial diversity and function in weathered and neutral Cu-Pb-Zn tailings with native soil addition. Geoderma 247-248: 108-116
  7. Eaton WD et al (2012) The impact of Pentaclethra macroloba on soil microbial nitrogen fixing communities and nutrients within developing secondary forests in the Northern Zone of Costa Rica.  Tropical Ecology 53:207-214



Q-P103 Gas Pump (1L/min no load)
G180 Soil Chamber with collar (10.2cm x 20cm high)
G115 Flow Through Chamber (3.8 x 20cm)
Q-S151 (0-2000 ppm) (Includes CO2 and H2O scrubbers)
S132 Temperature Probe
Q-S161 RH/Temperature Sensor
S135 Soil Moisture sensor
Q-G266 Flow Monitor (0-1L/min)
S181 Absolute pressure sensor with a single channel USB data interface (GoLink)
G122 Gas Bags Large (30L x 2)
A249 Battery Pack
C610 Two integrated LabQuest Mini interfaces
C901 Logger Pro Software
C404 Customized Setup Software
Q-Box Accessory Kit
Rugged waterproof case housing all sensors and analyzers
individual power supplies for stand-alone use of analyzers and sensors


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