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The Scale Effect of Double-Ring Infiltration and Soil Infiltration Zoning in a Semi-Arid Steppe

Inner Mongolia Water Resource Protection and Utilization Key Laboratory, College of Water Conservancy and Civil Engineering, Inner Mongolia Agricultural University, Hohhot 010018, China
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Water 2019, 11(7), 1457; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11071457
Received: 16 June 2019 / Revised: 5 July 2019 / Accepted: 11 July 2019 / Published: 14 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
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Abstract

The double-ring infiltrometer is widely used to measure soil unsaturated hydraulic conductivity in the field. The scale effect of the inner and outer ring size (especially the inner one) affects the measurement results. In the semi-arid steppe, where water is scarce and transportation is inadequate, studying the scale effect caused by the inner-ring diameter of the infiltrometer can reduce the test consumption on the premise of ensuring the test accuracy. In this paper, a total of 190 double-ring infiltration tests with different inner-ring diameters (15, 20, 25, 30, and 40 cm) and 0.33 times outer buffer index were carried out at 38 sites with five soil types in the Xilin river basin, China. Results showed that: (1) When comparing the simulated parameters of six infiltration models, parameters increased with the increase of the infiltrometer inner diameter, but the trend gradually slowed down, indicating that the increase of the infiltrometer inner diameter would weaken the influence of the infiltrometer scale effect. However, the infiltrometer with an inner diameter of 40 cm is not enough to completely overcome the scale effect. (2) Through principal component analysis, the infiltration process is mainly affected by the particle size and the initial moisture content. (3) The soil infiltration map based on infiltration tests was more practical than the soil type map, which can provide a theoretical basis for ecological and soil restoration in the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: soil water-holding capacity; infiltrometer diameter; infiltration models; soil restoration; Xilin River basin soil water-holding capacity; infiltrometer diameter; infiltration models; soil restoration; Xilin River basin
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Li, M.; Liu, T.; Duan, L.; Luo, Y.; Ma, L.; Zhang, J.; Zhou, Y.; Chen, Z. The Scale Effect of Double-Ring Infiltration and Soil Infiltration Zoning in a Semi-Arid Steppe. Water 2019, 11, 1457.

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