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Photosynthetica

, Volume 53, Issue 1, pp 72–84 | Cite as

Easy-to-make portable chamber for in situ CO2 exchange measurements on biological soil crusts

  • M. Ladrón De GuevaraEmail author
  • R. Lázaro
  • J. L. Quero
  • S. Chamizo
  • F. Domingo
Original Papers

Abstract

Commercial chambers for in vivo gas exchange are usually designed to measure on vascular plants, but not on cryptogams and other organisms forming biological soil crusts (BSCs). We have therefore designed two versions of a chamber with different volumes for determining CO2 exchange with a portable photosynthesis system, for three main purposes: (1) to measure in situ CO2 exchange on soils covered by BSCs with minimal physical and microenvironmental disturbance; (2) to acquire CO2-exchange measurements comparable with the most widely employed systems and methodologies; and (3) to monitor CO2 exchange over time. Different configurations were tested in the two versions of the chamber and fluxes were compared to those measured by four reference commercial chambers: three attached to two respirometers, and a conifer chamber attached to a portable photosynthesis system. Most comparisons were done on biologically crusted soil samples. When using devices in a closed system, fluxes were higher and the relationships to the reference chambers were weaker. Nevertheless, high correlations between our chamber operating in open system and measurements of commercial respiration and photosynthetic chambers were found in all cases (R 2 > 0.9), indicating the suitability of the chamber designed for in situ measurements of CO2 gas exchange on BSCs.

Additional key words

chamber cyanobacteria infrared gas analyzer lichen moss net photosynthesis soil respiration 

Abbreviations

BSC(s)

biological soil crust(s)

[CO2]

CO2 concentration

IRGA

infrared gas analyzer

RH

relative humidity

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Copyright information

© The Institute of Experimental Botany 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Ladrón De Guevara
    • 1
    Email author
  • R. Lázaro
    • 1
  • J. L. Quero
    • 2
    • 3
  • S. Chamizo
    • 1
  • F. Domingo
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Desertificación y Geoecología, Estación Experimental de Zonas Áridas.Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)La Cañada de San Urbano-AlmeríaSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Ingeniería Forestal, Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingeniería Agronómica y de Montes (ETSIAM)Universidad de CórdobaCórdobaSpain
  3. 3.Área de Biodiversidad y Conservación, Departamento de Biología y Geología, Escuela Superior de Ciencias Experimentales y TecnologíaUniversidad Rey Juan CarlosMóstolesSpain

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