Degree Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2014

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Agronomy

First Advisor

Robert Horton

Abstract

Soil hydraulic conductivity is important for liquid flow and transport processes in soil. Its value is affected by factors such as soil texture, soil structure, and porosity. These factors are influenced by plants and by human activities such as tillage and traffic compaction. Our study investigates soil hydraulic conductivity in a non-wheel traffic corn row, a wheel traffic corn row, and a reconstructed prairie. Soil hydraulic conductivity was obtained by steady-state tension infiltration measurements, by numerical inversion of the Richards equation, and with pedotransfer functions. The results show that traffic compaction and vegetation affect soil hydraulic conductivity over a range of water tension. At small water tensions, soil hydraulic conductivity of a non-wheel traffic corn row was largest, followed by prairie and a wheel traffic corn row. However, at relatively large water tension, soil hydraulic conductivity of a wheel traffic corn row was largest followed by prairie and non-wheel traffic corn row. Furthermore, the results also show that pedotransfer functions used in this study are not refined enough to detect the effects of traffic compaction and vegetation. Actual field water flow measurements are needed for accurate estimation of soil hydraulic conductivity.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.31274/etd-180810-3071

Copyright Owner

Sitha Ketpratoom

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

File Size

56 pages

Included in

Soil Science Commons

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