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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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MicMac Design Project

MicMac-Design Project

WP2.1 : Quantification and modelling of water, C-N cycles and associated greenhouse gaseous emissions


The main objective of the task 2.1 is to provide the project with a quantitative and complete balance of water, carbon and nitrogen for the different low input cropping systems studied.

Workplan and Methods:

Field measurements will include:
- Water content, NO3- and NH4+ profiles over 0-120 cm realized at 3 selected dates each year on all treatments for the evaluation of stocks

- Monitoring of NO3- concentration in the draining water (more frequently in winter) using ceramic cups to evaluate NO3- losses

- Evaluation of exportation and restitution of carbon and nitrogen by the crop (crop sampling at 3 growth stages; estimation of the contribution of symbiotic fixation to N input using 15N approach).

- Evaluation of total organic C and N stocks and their evolution through C and N content plus bulk density measurements

- Continuous CO2 and N2O emissions measurement (combined to the detailed monitoring of key variables: temperature, water content and NO3- and NH4- concentration) on two rotations with and without catch crop

- Characterization of the denitrification potential of combinations of soil and treatments, which will be a key issue for modelling the N2O emissions (CO2, N2O and NH3)

Modelling will be based on the STICS model (Brisson et al. 1998, 2002 and 2003), which has been recently adapted to deal with intercrops (Brisson et al. 2004) and has been successfully used for simulating yield and environmental impacts (specially NO3- losses) of crops/agricultural practices in France and in others countries (e.g. Jego et al. 2008).

Special work will be done to adapt and improve the gaseous emission module (CO2, N2O and NH3).


The main partners associated to this task are the Agro-Impact and AGIR units of INRA and CESBIO.