Campus Units

Agronomy

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

2-2006

Journal or Book Title

Advances in Water Resources

Volume

29

Issue

2

First Page

239

Last Page

249

DOI

10.1016/j.advwatres.2004.12.016

Abstract

Field determined hydraulic and chemical transport properties can be useful for the protection of groundwater resources from land-applied chemicals. Most field methods to determine flow and transport parameters are either time or energy consuming and/or they provide a single measurement for a given time period. In this study, we present a dripper-TDR field method that allows measurement of hydraulic conductivity and chemical transport parameters at multiple field locations within a short time period. Specifically, the dripper-TDR determines saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks), macroscopic capillary length (λc), immobile water fraction (θim/θ), mass exchange coefficient (α) and dispersion coefficient (Dm). Multiple dripper lines were positioned over five crop rows in a field. Background and step solutions were applied through drippers to determine surface hydraulic conductivity parameters at 44 locations and surface transport properties at 38 locations. The hydraulic conductivity parameters (Ks, λc) were determined by application of three discharge rates from the drippers and measurements of the resultant steady-state flux densities at the soil surface beneath each dripper. Time domain reflectometry (TDR) was used to measure the bulk electrical conductivity of the soil during steady infiltration of a salt solution. Breakthrough curves (BTCs) for all sites were determined from the TDR measurements. The Ks and λcvalues were found to be lognormally distributed with average values of 31.4 cm h−1 and 6.0 cm, respectively. BTC analysis produced chemical properties, θim/θ, α, and Dm with average values of 0.23, 0.0036 h−1, and 1220 cm2 h−1, respectively. The estimated values of the flow and transport parameters were found to be within the ranges of values reported by previous studies conducted at nearby field locations. The dripper TDR method is a rapid and useful technique for in situ measurements of hydraulic conductivity and solute transport properties. The measurements reported in this study give clear evidence to the occurrence of non-equilibrium water and chemical movement in surface soil. The method allows for quantification of non-equilibrium model parameters and preferential flow. Quantifying the parameters is a necessary step toward determining the influences of surface properties on infiltration, runoff, and vadose zone transport.

Comments

This article published as Al-Jabri, Salem A., Jaehoon Lee, Anju Gaur, Robert Horton, and Dan B. Jaynes. "A dripper-TDR method for in situ determination of hydraulic conductivity and chemical transport properties of surface soils." Advances in water resources 29, no. 2 (2006): 239-249. doi: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2004.12.016. Posted with permission.

Rights

Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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