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Akron-Based S4 Mobile Laboratories Secures Patent for Revolutionary Soil Probe Technology

Akron, OH - July 9, 2024 – S4 Mobile Laboratories proudly announces the issuance of a patent for their groundbreaking soil probe, on June 12, 2024. This patent marks a significant advancement in soil spectroscopy, solidifying S4's commitment to innovative soil analysis techniques.

S4’s Subterra© technology features a compact, all-fiber optic soil probe, half an inch in diameter and over a meter long, designed for easy soil insertion without bulky equipment. It delivers light through fiber optics to the probe tip, with reflected light analyzed by spectrometers for comprehensive soil property measurements across a wide range of wavelengths.

The Subterra© features an innovative all-fiberoptic design, housing both the light source and the measurement components above ground. This makes the probe significantly smaller and easier to deploy, enhancing its usability in various environments. Weighing about 135 pounds, Subterra© is portable and can be operated by one person in confined spaces. Additionally, it includes thermal expansion compensation, ensuring reliable performance across a wide range of outdoor temperatures. These features collectively enhance the probe's efficiency, mobility, and adaptability, making it a valuable tool for precise soil analysis.

David Perry, Chief Technology Officer at S4, emphasizes the significance of this innovation: "The unique feature of our newly patented probe is that all active components are above ground, making it much thinner and easier to insert into the soil. This is a game-changer for soil analysis."

The University of Akron played a role in the early development of the technologies supporting S4's success. Key members of S4's team, including Dr. David Perry, Dr. Linda Barrett, and Dr. Tim Matney, were faculty at the University of Akron during the initial development phases of the subsurface soil spectroscopy technology.

David Perry highlights this collaboration: "The University of Akron has been instrumental in our journey. The patented technology from our time there laid the foundation for what we are achieving now at S4. It’s a testament to how academic research can translate into real-world solutions."

The Subterra© probe patent is a significant leap forward in soil analysis technology. Its compact and efficient design allows for detailed soil property measurements that were previously difficult to obtain. This technology has the potential to revolutionize agricultural practices, enhance environmental monitoring, and provide critical scientific and forensic data.


About S4 Mobile Laboratories:


S4 Mobile Laboratories specializes in innovative mobile soil testing solutions designed for non-scientists. Their flagship technology, Subterra©, can detect numerous chemical signatures underground, making it valuable for various sectors, including law enforcement, military, environmental science, agriculture, and archaeology. By offering real-time analysis and easy operation, S4's mobile labs provide a faster, more cost-effective alternative to traditional soil sampling methods. Supported by $1.6 million in grants, S4 Mobile Laboratories aims to deliver precise and reliable soil intelligence to its clients.


For more information about our innovative Subterra© solutions, click here.


Media Contact:

Heather Kramer, HJK Digital


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