In regions affected by seasonal and permanently frozen conditions soil moisture influences the thermal regime of the ground as well as its ice content, which is one of the main factors controlling the sensitivity of mountain permafrost to climate changes. Within a research project of the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) several well established soil moisture monitoring techniques were combined with data from geophysical measurements to assess the spatial distribution and temporal evolution of soil moisture at three high elevation sites with different ground properties and thermal regimes.

(Pictures courtesy of Cecile Pellet)