• On the estimation of hydraulic conductivity of layered vadose zones with limited data availability

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    • Keywords

       

      Lateritic vadose zone; saturated hydraulic conductivity; field-saturated hydraulic conductivity; pedotransfer functions; vadose-zone characterisation.

    • Abstract

       

      Vadose zone acts as a controlling agent for recharge and transport of contaminants into aquifers. Hence, for modelling and quantifying flow and transport processes in subsurface environments, hydraulic conductivity (K) of the vadose zone plays an important role. However, given the heterogeneity and anisotropy of subsurface systems, the in-situ measurement of K is a daunting task at a larger scale. The present study was conceived to evaluate the efficacy of salient pedotransfer functions (PTFs) to indirectly estimate the saturated hydraulic conductivity ($K_{\rm{s}}$) of a lateritic vadose zone of eastern India. Also, in-situ hydraulic conductivity along with basic soil physical properties was determined in different vadose-zone layers at three locations (bare plot, cultivated field and orchard). Four PTFs [Campbell, Rawls–Brakensiek/Cronican–Gribb (R–B/C–G), and Models 2 and 3 of Rosetta] were selected to estimate $K_{\rm{s}}$ and their performances were evaluated. Based on the statistical indicators, it is concluded that Model 3 of Rosetta is capable of predicting relatively close values of $K_{\rm{s}}$ for the lateritic vadose zones to some extent. To generalise the findings of this study, it is recommended that such field-based studies should be carried out at a larger scale in lateritic terrains with varying land use/land cover.

    • Author Affiliations

       

      Smaranika Mahapatra1 Madan K Jha1

      1. AgFE Department, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur 721 302, India.
    • Dates

       
  • Journal of Earth System Science | News

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