The aim of a soil survey is to predict soil conditions at unvisited sites. In traditional soil survey, the use of statistics is principally for post hoc evaluation of the quality of the choropleth map in terms of purity and within- and between-map unit variance of soil properties. Probability sampling designs have been proposed for this. Pedometrical soil surveys treat all phases of the soil survey explicitly as a statistical problem. This had led to the adoption and development of, amongst other techniques, optimized sampling for mapping purposes, automated fuzzy classification of soil profiles, and geostatistical interpolation. Typically covariates related to the soil-forming factors and derived from remotely sensed images or digital elevation models are integrated into the geostatistical prediction
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