Advisor

Cooke III, William

Date of Degree

5-1-2008

Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access

Major

Geosciences

Degree Name

Master of Science

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Geosciences

Abstract

Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) has been widely investigated because of its notable properties as an alternative pasture grass and as an important biofuel source. The goal of this study was to determine soil suitability for Switchgrass in Mississippi. A linear weighted additive model was developed to predict site suitability. Multicriteria analysis and Sensitivity analysis were utilized to optimize the model. The model was fit using seven years of field data associated with soils characteristics collected from NRCS-USDA. The best model was selected by correlating estimated biomass yield with each model’s soils-based output for Switchgrass suitability. Pearson’s r (correlation coefficient) was the criteria used to establish the ‘best’ soil suitability model. Coefficients associated with the ‘best’ model were implemented within a Geographic Information System (GIS) to create a map of relative soil suitability for Switchgrass in Mississippi. A Geodatabase associated with soil parameters was constructed and is available for future GIS use.

URI

https://hdl.handle.net/11668/15177

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