Under the soil

 

My partners and I went around getting a soil sample to test the pH level. Then Mr. Cater hit us with the purpose of our soil test and how it will be useful later.

Someone was mean enough to take Mr. Caters bike, so of course, he had us do a little investigation. First, we analyzed the soil from outside of the gym by the loop, then we analyzed the soil from the crime scene. The soil my group and I collected, could help figure out where the thief was before the incident.

Soil is important, because with the information, you can determine the possible places the person has been. Soil is evidence at a crime scene. There are four major soil categories, those include – silt, clay, sand, and loam. Silt is a fine sand that could be carried by water, clay is a fine-grained natural rock that combines one or more clay material, it also has good water storage. Sand is a loose, grain soil that comes from the erosion of rocks. Loam, is a mixture of all silt, sand, clay, and humus. You can determine the type or texture of the soil by doing a pH test. You need to collect a sample of the soil you would like to test. Then you will put it in a test tube, along with water and a little bit of dish soap. After those materials are together, shake them to break down the parts. Layers will be showcased and you can measure the categories and then use the soil texture triangle to find what type your soil is.

triangle

Our soil was more softer and thin than grainy/rocky like the evidence soil. We had to take out some of the big stick in our soil to get a more accurate model. There was however a difference in the two soils. The evidence soil was medium  loam while my collected soil was a silty clay loam.

After we let the soils set over night, we came back and measured each layer. Each volume were added together to total up to equal one volume. Then by dividing each individual volume by the total volume, we got the percentage of sand, silt, and clay. We later connected those percentages on the pH triangle and got the type of soil.

Chemical Test                                Crime Scene Soil                                 My soil


pH                                                                  7                                                     8

The two pH tests on the soils did not match 100% but they were very close.

In the end, I felt good about our findings, we got very close to finding similar soil. Next, we need to do a little more digging, and get some more soil samples to test so we can find the exact soil left where the bike was last seen. All soils have different pH levels so we better get to work right away. But where do I start??

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