Inter-Storm Variability of Coefficient of Variation of Runoff Volume and Soil Loss during Rainfall and Erosion Simulation Replicates

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Watershed Management Engineering, Faculty of Natural Resources, Tarbiat Modares University

2 Department of Soil Science, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, University of Tehran


Investigation of inter-storm variability of runoff and soil loss characteristics helps experts and decision makes better understanding of hydrological response. However, this important has been less considered in the world, especially developing countries. The present study was therefore planned to evaluate the effect of different rainfall intensities and slopes on inter-storm variability of Coefficient of Variation (CV) of runoff volume and soil loss in three replicates. To achieve the objectives, a set of laboratorial experiments were conducted using rainfall simulator and 6×1 m erosion plot with a depth of 0.5 m and a slopes of 5, 15 and 25 %. Rainfall intensities of 30, 60, and 90 mmh-1 were applied to a soil sampled from Kojour rangeland watershed, northern Iran. The results described an increasing trend in runoff volume and soil loss inter-storm CV with increase in rainfall intensity at slopes of 5 and 15%. While, no trend was distinguished for inter-storm CV for runoff volume and soil loss with increase in slopes and different rainfall intensities except soil loss inter-storm CV in rainfall intensity of 90 mmh-1 at different slopes. The lowest and the highest coefficient of variation were also respectively found in means for runoff volume (i.e., 4.80 and 17.10 %) and soil loss (i.e., 17.28 and 87.96 %). The results of the study emphasized the necessity of considering the inter-storm variability of runoff and soil loss components in different replicates with regard to appropriate rainfall intensity and slope for analyzing the watershed system processes.


Main Subjects

[1]. Gómez JA, Nearing MA, Giráldez JV, Alberts EE. Analysis of sources of variability of runoff volume in a 40 plot experiment using a numerical model. J. Hydrol. 2001; 248(1): 183-197.
[2]. Nearing MA, Govers G, Norton LD. Variability in soil erosion data from replicated plots. Soil Sci Soc Am J. 1999; 63:1829–1835.
[3]. Agassi M, Bradford JM. Methodologies for interrill soil erosion studies. Soil Till. Res. 1999; 49:277–287
[4]. Anderson K, Kuhn NJ. Variations in soil structure and reflectance during a controlled crusting experiment. Int J Remote Sens. 2008; 29: 3457–3475
[5]. Armstrong A, Quinton JN, Heng BCP, Chandler JH. Variability of interrill erosion at low slopes. Earth Surf. Proc. Land. 2011; 36(1): 97-106.
[6]. Dunkerley D. Rain event properties in nature and in rainfall simulation experiments: a comparative review with recommendations for increasingly systematic study and reporting. Hydrol. Process. 2008; 22: 4415–4435.
[7]. Govers G. Rill erosion on arable land in central Belgium: rates, controls and predictability. Catena 1991; 18; 133–155.
[8]. Heil JW, Juo ASR,McInnes KJ. Soil properties influencing surface sealing of some sandy soils in the Sahel. Soil Sci. 1997; 162: 459–469
[9]. Le Bissonnais Y. Experimental study andmodelling of soil surface crusting processes. Catena 1990; 17:13–28
[10]. Ajayi AE, Horta IDMF. The effect of spatial variability of soil hydraulic properties on surface runoff processes. Anais XIII Simpósio Brasileiro de Sensoriamento Remoto, 2007; p. 3243-3248.
[11]. Bagarello V, Ferro V. Plot‐scale measurement of soil erosion at the experimental area of Sparacia (southern Italy). Hydrol. Process. 2004; 18(1): 141-157.
[12]. Hu Y, Fister W, Kuhn NJ. Temporal variation of SOC enrichment from interrill erosion over prolonged rainfall simulations. Agri. 2013; 3: 726–740
[13]. Toy TJ, Foster GR, Renard KG. Soil Erosion: Processes, Prediction, Measurement, and Control. John Wiley and Sons, New York, USA, 2002.
[14]. Wendt RC, Alberts EE, Hjelmfelt AT. Variability of runoff and soil loss from fallow experimental plots. Soil Sci Soc Am J. 1986; 50:730–736.
[15]. Hu Y, Fister W, Kuhn NJ. Inherent interreplicate variability during small-scale rainfall simulations. J Soil Sed. 2016; 16(6): 1809-1814.
[16]. Hudson NW. Field measurement of soil erosion and runoff. FAO Soils Bulletins, Silsoe Associates, Amptill, Bedford UK, 1993; 68.
[17]. Khaledi Darvishan A, Homayounfar V, Sadeghi SHR. The impact of soil preparation on the soil erosion rates under laboratory conditions. Solid Earth. 2015; 7: 885-907.
[18]. Khaledi Darvishan A, Sadeghi SHR, Homaee M, Arabkhedri M. Measuring sheet erosion using synthetic colorcontrast aggregates. Hydrol. Process. 2014; 28(15): 4463-4471.
[19]. Kiani Harchegani M, Sadeghi SHR, Asadi H. Changeability of concentration and particle size distribution of effective sediment in initial and mature flow generation conditions under different slops and rainfall intensities, Iranian J Water. Eng. Manag. 2016; Accepted. [Persian]
[20]. Parlak A, A. Özaslan Parlak. Measurement of splash erosion in differ- ent cover crops. Turk. J. Field Crops. 2010; 15(2):169–173.
[21]. Rüttimann M, Schaub D, Prasuhn V, Rüegg W. Measurement of runoff and soil erosion on regularly cultivated fields in Switzerland—some critical considerations. Catena. 1995; 25:127–139.
[22]. Sadeghi SHR, Kiani Harchegani M, Asadi H. Variability of particle size distributions of upward/downward splashed materials in different rainfall intensities and slope. Geoderma. 2017; 290: 100-106.
[23]. Shi ZH, Fang NF, Wu FZ, Wang L, Yue BJ, Wu G. L. Soil erosion processes and sediment sorting associated with transport mechanisms on steep slopes. J. Hydrol. 2012; 454: 123-130.
[24]. Sadeghi SHR, Kiani Harchegani M. Effects of sand mining on suspended sediment particle size distribution in Kojour forest river, Iran. J Agri. Sci. Tech. 2012; 14: 1637-1646.
[25]. Sadeghi SHR, Kiani Harchegani M, Asadi H. Splash particle size distribution along the experimental plot under different rainfall intensities and slopes, Iranian J Water Soil Res. 2016; 47 (4): 657-664. [Persian]
[26]. Kiani Harchegani M, Sadeghi SHR, Asadi H. Comparative analysis of the effects of rainfall intensity and experimental plot slope on Raindrop Impact Induced Erosion (RIIE). Iranian J Water Soil Res. 2016; 46(4): 631-640. [Persian]
[27]. ISO 5725-1 Guidance for the Use of repeatability, reproducibility, and trueness estimates in measurement uncertainty estimation. Geneva, Switzerland: ISO; 2004.
[28]. Sadeghi SHR, Saeidi P, Noor H, Raeisi MB. Understanding sediment yield process in a Hyrcanian forest watershed. In International Conference Land Conservation LANDCON. May 26-30, Tara Mountain/Serbia. 2009; (Vol. 905).