• Cosmic Sense - DFG-Forschungsgruppe FOR 2694
Cosmic Sense Logo
Photo: cosmic sense consortium

Welcome to Cosmic Sense

Cosmic Sense is a research unit funded by the German Science Foundation (DFG), grant no. FOR 2694. After a successful first phase, the second phase kicked off in spring 2022 for another three years.

The core approach of the research unit is advancing of the Cosmic Ray Neutron Sensing (CRNS) technology and its application together with other methods, as an innovative approach to measuring soil moisture at the scale of hundreds of meters and beyond. This scale perfectly matches the need for soil moisture assessment at the landscape scale, e.g. for small catchments, and is also an important link between point-scale soil moisture measurements and large-scale maps obtained from remote sensing or hydrological modelling. It is therefore, a highly attractive tool for both, scientific research and applied water management.

Cosmic Sense brings together scientists from nine institutes and universities from Germany and Austria, joining forces in order to advance the technology itself and develop a quantitative, adaptable, and transferable approach for observing root-zone soil moisture at the field scale while accounting for other dynamic water pools, such as biomass. In phase 2, special emphasis will be on including snow as an additional dynamic water pool in the landscape, agricultural land use such as cropped fields, and a shift towards larger scales (10 – 100 km²).

Find out more about the project, its members and latest activities!

Cosmic Sense Logo
Photo: cosmic sense consortium
Picture of a alpine landscape with patchy snow cover and measuring equipment | picture: Cosmic Sense consortium

New Research Module

Snow Dynamics is one of the new foci in the second phase of Cosmic Sense

Portraits of the new PIs of Cosmic Sense: Paul Schattan, Sabine Attinger and Sander Huisman | Cosmic Sense consortium

New Faces

Paul Schattan, Sabine Attinger and Sander Huisman have been partners during phase 1 and joined the team of PIs for phase 2

Title page of a scientific article

Latest Articles

Find a regularily updated list of articles published by the Cosmic Sense consortium

In preparation for the defense of the second phase of Cosmic Sense a short documentary was produced, featuring the activities of the Cosmic Sense team at the research site Marquardt

Latest news

February 2023 - New paper published

Schrön et al. published a paper on the signal contribution of distant areas to cosmic-ray neutron sensors!

January 2023 - New paper published

Köhli et al. published a paper about the free software package URANOS for the simulation of different neutron transport scenarios!

Five examples of irrigation patterns: A 1200m by 1200m square, including a smaller patch in the middle, both areas were irrigated in different sequence to create different soil moisture patterns | Figure: Brogi et al. 2022

December 2022 - New paper published

Brogi et al. published a paper about the feasibility of irrigation monitoring with cosmic-ray neutron sensors!