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Soil resistance to interrill erosion: Model parameterization and sensitivity

Authors
Journal
CATENA
0341-8162
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
77
Issue
3
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.catena.2009.02.007
Keywords
  • Interrill Erosion
  • Soil Erodibility
  • Erosion Modelling
  • Model Sensitivity
Disciplines
  • Earth Science
  • Geography

Abstract

Abstract Interrill erosion, which is less visible in the landscape than rill and gully erosion, may cause major sediment deposits in the lower part of cultivated fields. It is often associated with runoff resulting from sealing and crusting, and soil properties such as soil detachability or soil aggregate stability have been used to express soil resistance to interrill erosion processes, i.e., interrill erodibility. From a literature review including more than fifteen erosion models, we have identified three main methods used to measure these properties: aggregate stability and splash cup detachability, methods performed in the laboratory using only a few grams of soil, and standard plot methods that are based on field plot measurements. This difference makes the parameters involved in assessing interrill erodibility dependent upon the scale and the hydrological processes involved and difficult to compare. According to the literature, the sensitivity of actual erosion models to interrill erodibility is lower than the sensitivity to hydrological properties and rill erodibility parameters. This numerical study shows that erodibility measurements from the three major assessment methods give different results regarding the contribution of interrill erosion and show that the sensitivity of erosion modeling to interrill erodibility may in fact be greater than shown in the literature on global sensitivity analysis.

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