Water flux and sediment transport within a forested landscape: the role of connectivity, subsurface flow, and slope length scale on transport mechanism

Ghahramani, Afshin and Ishikawa, Yoshiharu (2013) Water flux and sediment transport within a forested landscape: the role of connectivity, subsurface flow, and slope length scale on transport mechanism. Hydrological Processes, 27 (26). pp. 4091-4102. ISSN 0885-6087


The connectivity and upscaling of overland runoff and sediment transport are important issues in hillslope hydrology to identify water flux and sediment transport within landscape. These processes are highly variable in time and space with regard to their interactions with vegetation and soil surface conditions. The generation of overland runoff and its spatial connectivity were examined along a slope to determine the variations in the transport mechanism of runoff and soil particles by rain splash and overland runoff. Field experiments were conducted by erosion plots on a steep hillslope at lengths of 5, 10, and 15 m. The overland runoff connectivity and flow transport distance decreased with the slope length, while spatial variability of infiltration increased significantly with the slope length. Observation of subsurface flow revealed that surface soil and litter layer could have important role in water transport. However, the surface soil water content and water flux transport along the slope was highly variable for different storm events; the variability was related to the complexity of the system, mainly by way of the initial wetness conditions and infiltration characteristics. Only net rain-splashed soil was measurable, but examination of the water flux, overland runoff and sediment transport connectivity, characteristics of sheetwash, and the variability in spatial infiltration indicated an increase in the contribution of the rain splash transport mechanism along the slope.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Institute for Agriculture and the Environment
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2016 23:56
Last Modified: 28 Mar 2017 06:10
Uncontrolled Keywords: hillslope; scaling; overland runoff; subsurface runoff; rain splash; sheetwash; HYDRUS
Fields of Research : 05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050209 Natural Resource Management
05 Environmental Sciences > 0503 Soil Sciences > 050399 Soil Sciences not elsewhere classified
04 Earth Sciences > 0499 Other Earth Sciences > 049999 Earth Sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1002/hyp.9791
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/29944

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