Scientific registration nº : 8044

Symposium nº : 44

Presentation : Education Exhibit


Interactive computer programme for demostration of micromorphological aspects of calcification processes in soils





Departamento de Edafología y Química Agrícola. Facultad de Ciencias. Universidad de Granada. Spain.



This program illustrates the micromorphological features resulting from the carbonatation/decarbonatation processes, which are uttermost representative for the enviroment in arid or semiarid enviroments.


The programme is divided in five part:


(1) Introduction

                        (2) Classification

                        (3) Processes

                        (4) Evolution

                        (5) Origin


Each of these parts is presented in an interactive way and explains the different topics of the part under consideration, thus:


The first part explains the properties used to identify carbonates with the polarizing microscope (e.g. relief, colour, pleochroism, habit, interference colours, extinction, elongation, axial figures and optical sign), so as general concept about the process of calcification in soils. The part on classification shows following pedofeatures: coatings, hypocoatings, infillings, nodules, and finally the groundmass.

The part on processes treats: calcite formation including crystallization, alteration and bioformation as primary processes, and recrystallization, replacement as secondary processes. In addition calcite destruction is discussed.

The part on evolution treats the micromorphology and the processes affecting the evolution of carbonate accumulations in soils, and in the case of the origin the most characteristic features, reflecting the provenance of carbonates in soils, are studied.

Each of these parts contains a final test for self-evaluation by the user.


The prograrnme is constructed in Hypercard 2.2, using a Hypertalk language for Macintosh minicomputer, but could be adapted for Windows.