This atlas is an up-to-date visual resource on the features and structures observed in soil thin sections, i.e. soil micromorphology. The book addresses the growing interest in soil micromorphology in the fields of soil science, earth science, archaeology and forensic science, and serves as a reference tool for researchers and students for fast learning and intuitive feature and structure recognition. A Visual Atlas for Soil Micromorphologists is divided into six parts and contains hundreds of images and photomicrographs. Part one is devoted to the way to sample properly soils, the method of preparation of thin sections, the main tool of soil micromorphology (the microscope), and the approach of soil micromorphology as a scientific method. Part two focuses on the organisation of soil fragments and presents the concept of fabric. Part three addresses the basic components, e.g. rocks, minerals, organic compounds and anthropogenic features. Part four lists all the various types of pedogenic features observed in a soil, i.e. the imprint of pedogenesis. Part five gives interpretations of features associated with the main processes at work in soils and paleosols. Part six presents a view of what the future of soil micromorphology could be. Finally, the last part consists of the index and annexes, including the list of mineral formulas. This atlas will be of interest to researchers, academics, and students, who will find it a convenient tool for the self-teaching of soil micromorphology by using comparative photographs.
Dr Eric P. Verrecchia is a full professor of Biogeosciences at the Institute of Earth Surface Processes, University of Lausanne (Switzerland). He specializes in geopedology and biogeochemistry of the terrestrial carbon and calcium cycles. Awarded with a Marie-Curie-Fellowship in 1994-95, he joined Prof. G. Stoops laboratory of soil micromorphology in Gent (Belgium), where he was introduced to the microscopic approach of soils. Since then, he has been teaching and applying this technique, by coupling it with biogeochemical methods, to soils from the tropics and the temperate zone, particularly in carbonate-rich environments.
Dr Luca Trombino is an associate professor at the University of Milan, Earth Sciences Department. His main research topics are in the field of geopedology, paleopedology, soil and archaeological deposits, where he extensively uses thin section micromorphology, coupled to sedimentology, geoarchaeology and Quaternary geology methods. He started to practice soil micromorphology in 1994 when he attended the courses by G. Stoops at the University of Gent (Belgium), and at present, is teaching Micropedology to the students of the M.Sc. in BioGeoSciences and M.Sc. in Conservation Science at the University of Milan.