Field lab Merbitz

The Agricultural and Nutritional Research Centre (AEVZ) Merbitz is located about 15 km north of Halle and, as part of the university teaching and research stations, is dedicated to questions of cultivation system and crop research. A total of 16 ha is available for field trials.

Primary research interests include:

  • the development of climate change adaptation strategies,
  • the development of sustainable, resource-conserving land use systems and
  • the soil-plant value chain.

In addition to answering scientific questions, the AEVZ Merbitz is currently and will continue to be indispensable in the teaching of the Chair of Geoecology (e.g. Land System Science 3: Project-based Study in Geoecology I – Collection, Analysis and Interpretation of Data at the Local Scale). Among other things, the permanently accessible soil profile set up at the site and the data from the modern weather station are used for this. Exercises at the AEVZ also take place in other modules, such as Qualitative and Quantitative Geo Remote Sensing.

Diverse data collection in the areas of UAV, remote sensing, micrometeorology and laboratory allow excellent integration of studies of vegetation parameters, classical agronomic or soil physical parameters, post-harvest quality parameters and material/energy balance, among others, into final theses (Bachelor and Master).

Current focal points include:

  • Small-scale plot characterisation of changes in chemical and physical soil condition of the experimental plot,
  • Processing of UAV images (RGB) to create high-resolution orthomosaics/slanted aerial images for possible volume calculations or the creation of a digital surface model,
  • Development of a workflow for drone-based detection of stones,
  • Characterisation of the site material and energy budget by recording the net CO2 exchange (between land surface and atmosphere) and the energy balance as a function of biometeorological parameters.

Partner on site:

AEVZ (Head: Bernd Look)


Walch S (2021) Die Veränderungen des bodenchemischen und bodenphysikalischen Bodenzustandes der Versuchsfläche des Agrar- und Ernährungswissenschaftlichen Versuchszentrums (AEVZ) in Merbitz zwischen den Jahren 2011 und 2020. Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
Backhaus R (2021) Bodengeographische Flächencharakteristik der Versuchsstation Merbitz. Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
Schmidt J (2020) Wirkung differenzierter Bodenbearbeitung auf ausgewählte Ertragsparameter und bodenphysikalische Eigenschaften bei Winterweizen. Martin-Luth-Universität Hall-Wittenberg
Field lab Merbitz
Saalkreis, Saxony-Anhalt
16 ha
Sustainable agriculture