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Electrical Conductivity
!.the electrical conductivity measurement on a nutrient solution has a direct relationship with the amount of dissociated solid materials that there are dissolved in it.

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Conductivity is the measurement of the capacity that a material has to lead the electri loaded ionic particles and therefore they have this ability. Whichever is greater the conducti these ions dissolved in the water is greater. Therefore the measurement of the electrical c a direct relationship with the amount of dissociated solid materials that there are diss

Conductimeters are apparatuses used to measure conductivity. Basically this conduct plates of a special material (platinum, titanium, nickel covered with gold, graphite, etc.), a measurement scale. Applied a tension between the conductimeter's plates, it measures th

With the values of the applied voltage and the electrical intensity of the current that pass thro according to their previous calibration, the conductivity of the tried sample.

There are many types of conductimeters and the conductivity values are related to the ce really measures a specific conductivity which is the product of the really measured condu same one. This constant is a relationship between the surface of the plates and the distance

Conductivity measurements also is dependent on the sample's temperature during th conductimeters have automatic devices to compensate temperature changes. Other electric important for their consideration in hydroponics.

Different ways for talking about Electric Condu

The well known Ohm's law tell us that when somebody apply a tension between two points of a conductor a circulation of el directly proportional to the applied voltage and inversely proportional to the conductor's resistance. Thus: where

I = E/R
I is the current intensity measured in Amperes E potential tension in Volts, and R the resistance in Ohms.

Purest water doesn't carry electrical current. However, when water contains an electrolyte dissolved in it becomes a conductor where the resistance is proportional to the distance between electrodes and inversely proportional to the area of them. Thus: where

R = r.L/A
r is the specific resistvity measured in Ohm/cm L is the distance between electrodes in cm, and A is the area of these in cm2.

The inverse of specific resistivity is the specific conductivity (k). This is: k=1/r and therefore its unit of measurement stays defined as

Hystoricaly being Ohm-1 the inverse of resistance unit it was called mho, the original word written other way around. Thus,the specific conductivity unit w In order to simplify, during the last decades of the XX century, the mho unit was changed to be denominated Siemens assigning the capital letter conductivity unit stay as S/cm.

For many this page's readers everything described here can seem a great tangle. But this explanation, complex for most people, has been necessary sin instruments using in different form all these units and submultiples of them. There are a lot of confusion between the users. As corolario the following sum when electrical conductivity of a nutritious solution is measured, the specific conductivity of that dissolution is determined. the unit of measurement of this specific conductivity is the Siemens/cm or S/cm. equivalences between units and the forms in which frequently they are expressed are the following ones:

To practical effects the four emphasized units in the red line above are those that hydroponics fans can find in their apparatuses. Most common they are by million). The relationship with this last one is empirical and approximate since there are certain interferences on the ions loads transport of their charg this one but it is unnecessary to the practical effects. In order to express equivalence in parts per millon of disolved solids, diverse authors agree in assig being 0.640 sufficiently accepted, by each 1 EC. Calibration apparatus in ppm use these empirical factors. CF unit spread mainly in Australia and Nueva Zelanda is 100 times greater that the EC unit. On the other hand, the unit dS/m often can be seen mainly in papers from USA researchers.

Ec's for different plants

Values of conductivity most acceptable ranges for many different plants have been compiled. To build this chart the author used all bibliographycal refe being complete. In order to have a wider and precise information on EC acceptable values, we will appreciate from the readers complementary and /o please use the e-mail

To didactical effects plants were separated in four groups according to their food requirements. However, nutritive solution concentrations are shown h high. Since there are several superpositions at the range's extremes, this division is only relative.

Higher EC values?
Recently this page author's has been surprised after a very interesting statement of a technicaly inquestionable New Zealand hydroponist. In order to provide that information to others, the principal concepts are copied below.

" The secret to obtaining ver is to grow them at a very hig

Another well known hydroponist from Australia, is supporting the above information as follow:

Lic. en Qumica Carlos R. Arano

Buenos Aires 660 - B Sta. Brgida -1748 Gral. Rodrguez - Pcia de Bs. Aires - Argentin Tel. + 54 (0) 237 484 1480