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Home » General Applications » Water Resource

Water Resource

The importance of quantifying the water resource stored in the snow pack is strategic for its management for agricultural, industrial and domestic purposes.
Finapp assesses the available Water Resource through the determination of the Snow Water Equivalent.

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The Finapp probe is an integrated sensor for the measurement of ambient neutrons, generated by cosmic rays, which allows the estimation of SWE, i.e., water content in snow.
The principle of operation is the same as already described for soil moisture, but the peculiarity of this measurement is the presence of a pair of Finapp probes:

  • The first is placed above the snow pack. This probe is used to measure incoming neutrons from space before they interact with the snow.
  • The second is placed at ground level, burying it slightly, when the ground is free of snow. The snow cover will completely cover the probe, which will then count neutrons that have already interacted with the snow pack.

The difference in neutron counts between the two probes gives us an accurate measure of how much water is present in the snow pack.

Pros and Features

Finapp provides SWE values-expressed in mm water equivalent-representative:

  • Large-scale: radius of more than 20m
  • At depth: saturation limit of about 2’000mm
  • Real-time

The same probe, thanks to the measurement of muons, a sub-atomic particle always generated by cosmic rays, is able to provide a backup measurement of SWE with a saturation limit > 10’000mm, again in real time, albeit over a radius reduced to about 1m. This is a unique feature in the SWE market, thanks to a patented innovation.

When the snow is fully melted, the probe will provide soil moisture, again on a large scale, in depth and in real time, thus becoming a multifunctional instrument.

FAQ – common questions

Is the sensor able to measure snow height?

No, the Finapp probe always measures the amount of water present in the range. Therefore, in the presence of snow, we provide a measurement of the SWE – Snow Water Equivalent – that is, the water equivalent, a much more important parameter than snow height.

Does it work in summer?

Yes, the probe, in the absence of snow, measures soil moisture.


Do canals and rivers influence the measurement?

Yes, every water source influences the measurement, however small streams not make a significant contribution. Assessments should be made on a case-by-case basis considering the consistencies of these watersheds.

Can the sensor measure Soil Moisture in the summertime?

Yes, the Finapp probe always measures water content, regardless of whether it is snow or soil

Is the sensor affected by the windiness of the installation area?

No, the probe measures the water content present within the range. Clearly, windy places subject to wind transport may have a lower amount of snow than neighboring areas.

Can the sensor be installed within a forested area?

Water present in biomass does not affect the measurement of SWE.

However, the presence of dense vegetation will prevent a representative measurement of the snow present.

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Meeting customers’ need

At Finapp we are committed to meeting the scientific measurement instrumentation needs of our customers, we enthusiastically help all those who work sustainably and fairly, we support those who advance science and technology for the benefit of humanity. Finapp believes in innovation as well as service.

Do not hesitate to get in touch with us for an appointment, visit, consultation, we will try to answer all your questions trying to suggest some possible innovative solutions.





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