A source-based model for describing dust concentrations during wind erosion events: an initial study

Butler, H. J. and Hogarth, W. L. and McTainsh, G. H. (1996) A source-based model for describing dust concentrations during wind erosion events: an initial study. Environmental Software, 11 (1-3). pp. 45-52. ISSN 0266-9838

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Wind erosion is a broad-scale process in inland Australia. When conditions are conducive to wind erosion, dust storms can entrain fine sediment over large areas of the continent, however closer examination indicates that the dust source areas are often spatially discrete. The fine sediment entrained from these sources, is transported as dust plumes, which may coalesce at some point downwind. While some progress has been made in estimating the dust load in these plumes (Knight, McTainsh & Simpson 1995), the accuracy of these estimates is limited by the size and shape of the source region assumed. In addition, soil loss per unit area is a more appropriate measure of soil erosion than total plume load, but estimating loss per unit area requires accurate estimation of source areas. The new model developed hopes to overcome these limitations by working from the source area downwind, rather than back-tracking to
estimate the source area as done by Knight et al. (1995). As a result of this, the new model is quite distinct from that of Knight et al. (1995), in that it no longer assumes that entrainment is uniform across a single source area, and consequently that the concentration profile is uniform across the source area.
The new model uses a Gaussian plume model (Zannetti 1990), with the dispersion parameters based on the Hanna, Briggs & Hosker (1982) estimates for rural areas. As a first approximation, the model describes dust loads emanating from sources of different strength and spacing along a crosswind line. This configuration is indicative of spatially discrete sources, with different soil erodibility and cover protection, producing different source strengths. Initial results from the model indicate that the nature
of the downwind dust concentration profile is dependent on the following factors: downwind distance from source, source strengths,and crosswind source separation. A detailed discussion of the relationship between the above factors is presented. As a result of this discussion a number of conjectures are made about the nature of the physical system.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright © 1996 Elsevier Science Ltd. Permanent restricted access to published version due to copyright policy of Publisher
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Maths and Computing
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 01:16
Last Modified: 31 Oct 2013 01:15
Uncontrolled Keywords: soil erosion; wind erosion; dust; box models; dust plumes; Gaussian plume; modelling
Fields of Research : 01 Mathematical Sciences > 0103 Numerical and Computational Mathematics > 010301 Numerical Analysis
05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050209 Natural Resource Management
05 Environmental Sciences > 0503 Soil Sciences > 050305 Soil Physics
Socio-Economic Objective: D Environment > 96 Environment > 9601 Air Quality > 960199 Air Quality not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1016/S0266-9838(96)00036-6
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/2893

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