Scholarly article on topic 'Soil Water Retention Curve from Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity for Sandy Loam and Loamy Sand Textured Soils'

Soil Water Retention Curve from Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity for Sandy Loam and Loamy Sand Textured Soils Academic research paper on "Earth and related environmental sciences"

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Abstract of research paper on Earth and related environmental sciences, author of scientific article — P. Shwetha, K. Varija

Abstract Knowledge of the soil hydraulic properties is indispensable to solve many soil and water management problems related to agriculture, ecology, and environmental issues. Soil hydraulic properties are key factors that regulate the movement of groundwater and transport of solutes. The most important hydraulic properties of soils are the soil water retention curve (SWRC) and saturated hydraulic conductivity (ks). Determination of these hydraulic properties is needed for many studies and applications related to irrigation, drainage, water movement and solute transport in the soil. Although many advances are made for direct measurements of SWRC and ks, they are usually time consuming and costly. Some attempts have been made to indirectly predict these hydraulic properties. The objective of this study was to derive an empirical relationship to estimate soil water retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity. One hundred and one soil samples were collected from agricultural and forest sites at different depths, at different locations in the Pavanje river basin that lies in the southern coastal region of Karnataka, India. The saturated hydraulic conductivity was measured in the laboratory by variable falling head method using Permeameter and soil water retention curve data was obtained through pressure plate apparatus for all the agricultural and forest soils. Prediction accuracies were evaluated using coefficient of determination, root mean square error, mean error, Akaike Information Criteria, between measured and predicted values. The results obtained from the prediction of soil moisture retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity, shows that the developed relationship are reasonably useful to get the soil moisture retention curve for the soils of agricultural and forested hillslopes of the region under consideration.

Academic research paper on topic "Soil Water Retention Curve from Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity for Sandy Loam and Loamy Sand Textured Soils"

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Aquatic Procedía 4 (2015) 1142 - 1149

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON WATER RESOURCES, COASTAL AND OCEAN

ENGINEERING (ICWRCOE 2015)

Soil water retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity for sandy loam and loamy sand textured soils

Shwetha Pa*, Varija Kb

aDon Bosco College of Engineering,Fatorda,Goa,403602, India bNational Institute of Technology,Surathkal,Karnataka,575025,India

Abstract

Knowledge of the soil hydraulic properties is indispensable to solve many soil and water management problems related to agriculture, ecology, and environmental issues.Soil hydraulic properties are key factors that regulate the movement of groundwater and transport of solutes.The most important hydraulic properties of soils are the soil water retention curve (SWRC) and saturated hydraulic conductivity (ks). Determination of these hydraulic properties is needed for many studies and applications related to irrigation, drainage, water movement and solute transport in the soil. Although many advances are made for direct measurements of SWRC and ks, they are usually time consuming and costly. Some attempts have been made to indirectly predict these hydraulic properties. The objective of this study was to derive an empirical relationship to estimate soil water retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity. One hundred and one soil samples were collected from agricultural and forest sites at different depths, at different locations in the Pavanje river basin that lies in the southern coastal region of Karnataka, India. The saturated hydraulic conductivity was measured in the laboratory by variable falling head method using Permeameter and soil water retention curve data was obtained through pressure plate apparatus for all the agricultural and forest soils. Prediction accuracies were evaluated using coefficient of determination, root mean square error, mean error,Akaike Information Criteria, between measured and predicted values.The results obtained from the prediction of soil moisture retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity, shows that the developed relationship are reasonably useful to get the soil moisture retention curve for the soils of agricultural and forested hillslopes of the region under consideration.

© 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license

(http://creativecommons.Org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Peer-reviewunder responsibilityoforganizing committee ofICWRCOE2015

Keywords:saturated hydraulic conductivity;soil water retention curve;pedotransfer functions; non-linear regression; sandy loam; loamy sand;

* Shwetha P. Tel.: 07507558940; fax: 08322742648. E-mail address:shwethaprasanna@gmail.com

2214-241X © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license

(http://creativecommons.Org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Peer-review under responsibility of organizing committee of ICWRCOE 2015

doi:10.1016/j.aqpro.2015.02.145

1. Introduction

Soil and water are the two fundamental natural resources on which the human beings depend most. Due to uncontrolled growth in population, development of agricultural technologies, rapid industrialization etc., it is essential to understand the relationship between soil and water so that, these resources can be used in a better way. Countries like India are still looking at the scientific assessment of water resources at the micro level. In view of the uneven distribution of this resource, many areas of our country face water shortage, including the coastal belt of Karnataka. Though the coastal region receives plentiful rainfall, most of the areas of this region become dry and the water table falls to a very low level. Many of the ponds and rivers will dry up during summer, making normal life difficult from the month of March to May. The reason for the shortage is not the lack of water resources but the poor management of the water table. Primary reason for the poor management of water table is due to the insufficient knowledge about the hydraulic properties of the soil formations. So for the better planning and management of water resources, the knowledge of hydraulic properties of soil is essential. In this aspect, there is a need to understand the soil hydraulic properties represented by the relationships between the volumetric soil water content (9), the soil water pressure head (h) and the hydraulic conductivity (k).

Soil hydraulic propertiesdepend mainly on soil structure, soil texture, organic matter content, and bulk density Hillel (1998). Therefore they vary both vertically and horizontally in each plot. Thus, knowledge of soil hydraulic properties with respect to horizons is a prerequisite to understand the overall hydrological behavior of a soil profile. The most frequently used hydraulic properties are the soil water retention curve and the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity function. Soil water retention curve is a key parameter in soil and water management practices for sustainable and improved agricultural production. It describes the relationship between soil-water potential and its volumetric water content, 9(h).Hydraulic conductivity describes the ease of water flow in the soil. It is also an important soil property, especially for modeling water flow and solute transport in soil, irrigation and drainage design, groundwater modeling and other agricultural as well as engineering processes. In saturated conditions, the saturated hydraulic conductivity reflects the number of pores and their arrangement.Saturated hydraulic conductivity (ks) represents the ease with which water flows through soil when pore spaces are completely filled with water. It is difficult to characterize because of its high variability even over short distances, and measurement methods, typically require considerable time and resources. However, accurate estimation of saturated hydraulic conductivity in soils is essential for various hydrological applications.

Soil water retention curve and hydraulic conductivity in saturated and unsaturated zones are fundamentals for irrigation and drainage modeling.In a forested hillslope also, the water flow phenomenon is very important for water resource management and predicting slope failure caused by heavy rainfall. Forested hillslope is usually covered with forest soil, which has peculiar pore radius distribution and hydraulic properties. It has been frequently pointed out that the existence of large size pore increases the permeability of forest soil. This reduces the surface flow and increases the water infiltration into soil profiles,Kirkby(1978). The use of measurements from agricultural soils for the hydraulic modeling of forest soils is quite inappropriate because forest soils show distinctively different physical and hydraulic properties. They differ significantly from the arable land in their particle size distribution, bulk density, porosity, and organic matter content, and water retention parameters. Forest soils are less compacted, showing a greater aggregate stability and macro porosity and, therefore have greater saturated hydraulic conductivity and air capacity, Fisher and Binkley (2000).

There are only few datasets on the hydraulic properties of forest soils available in the literature. But relatively major portion of the research activities related to such measurements are restricted to agricultural land use,Mecke et al. (2000). Binayak et al. (2000) measured saturated hydraulic conductivity and soil water retention functions at 15 cm and 30 cm depths across a glacial till landscape in central Iowa that encompassed two soil types. They suggested that a uniform texture (loam) and a pore size distribution developed by long term (no tillage) agricultural practices in the field are important controlling factors for the spatial variability of different hydraulic parameters. Do-Hun Lee (2005) evaluated the saturated and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity values by the inverse parameter estimation and PTF method. They used root mean squared error (RMSE) and mean absolute error (MAE) to compare soil hydraulic conductivity values between numerical inverse solution and PTF. Pandey et al. (2006) compared the saturated hydraulic conductivity estimated by the four models namely multiple linear regression, Rosetta program, effective porosity model and relative effective porosity model with the laboratory measured saturated hydraulic conductivity for alluvial soils. They analyzed statistically and concluded that the relative effective porosity model

gives reasonable estimate of saturated hydraulic conductivity. Wahren et al.(2009) observed increased field capacities in forest soils than agricultural soils. They also found that the hydraulic conductivity at saturation and field capacity in forest sites were up to four times higher than those of the cropland site. Heike Puhlmann and Klaus von Wilpert (2012) developed PTFs for water retention and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity of forest soils. They concluded that the predictive accuracy of the established PTFs, both for the water retention curve and the hydraulic conductivity curve, was in the range of (and in some cases better than) other existing PTFs that were mostly derived for agricultural soils.

Due to the importance of hydraulic properties in both agricultural and forested hillslopes, the process of measuring and estimating these properties gets prominence. Soil hydraulic properties are known to vary in space; hence to simulate realistic field conditions, a large number of samples are required. Many direct methods have been developed for its measurement in field and laboratory. However, the direct measurement of hydraulic properties in lab or field is difficult, time-consuming and expensive. In the wake of this, some indirect methods have been developed. The primary motivation for conducting the study of soil water retention curve and saturated hydraulic conductivity stems from the lack of its detailed studies in this particular region in the literature. Most of the studies were carried out on agricultural soils or in other words a very few detailed study of hydraulic properties have been conducted for forest soils. The present study was carried out to estimate the soil water retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity of soils for both agricultural and forested hillslope areas in Pavanje river basin, Karnataka, India.

2. Materials and methods

In the present study, the Pavanje river basin in Dakshina Kannada district of coastal Karnataka is considered (Fig.1). The Pavanje river originates in the foothills of Western Ghats and flows towards west to join the Arabian Sea and lies between North latitudes 12°57'30" to 13°07'30" and East longitudes 74°45W to 75°02'30".The basin lies within the Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka State, India. It is planked on the east by the foothills of the Western Ghats and on the west by the Arabian Sea. The soils of the basin mainly consist of sandy loam, loamy sand, silty sand and sand. The area of catchment is 202.33 Sq. Km. Soil sampling was conducted on agricultural and forest land near Pavanje river basin. Sampling points were showed as dots in Fig. 1.Soil samples were collected from the different locations at different depths in the agricultural and forested hillslope areas of the Pavanje river basin. At first, soil sampling was done in agricultural land. Fifty soil samples were collected from different locations at different soil profiles over a depth of 0-150 cm at 20 cm interval. Next fifty sixsamples were collected from the forested hillslopes at different elevations from crest (120 m) to footslope (30 m).

Pavanje River Basin

a I..H-;

Siiiigiibcttii *

iDecimal Degrees

Fig.1.Location of study area in coastal region of Karnataka

The depth interval was 10 cm to 75cm. It is known that the physical properties of soil affect its hydraulic properties to a great extent. All the undisturbed and disturbed soil samples collected from the agriculture land and forested hillslopes were subjected to laboratory measurements to determine bulk density, porosity, organic matter content, particle-size distribution, saturated hydraulic conductivity and soil water retention characteristics. Particle-size distribution was determined using sieve analysis and hydrometer method. Sand, silt and clay contents are expressed as a percentage by mass of the fine earth fraction and soil texture is identified according to the USDA system of soil classification. The saturated hydraulic conductivity was measured in laboratory by variable falling head method using Permeameter for all agricultural and forest soils. Soil water retention data at -33,-100,-300,-500,-1000 and -1500 kPa matric potentials were measured with a pressure plate apparatus.

Soil water retention data is sparsely available when compared to other data. In order to have a quick derivation of soil water retention curve for typical regions without detailed laboratory investigations, an attempt has been made here to derive the same from saturated hydraulic conductivity. The following typical functional relation was derived for characterizing the soil water retention curve.

d = A + Be~(-Cks (1)

where,

• 9 = Volumetric water content (cm3/cm3)

• ks= Saturated hydraulic conductivity (cm/hr)

• h = Soil water pressure head (cm)

• A, B, C, D = Constants

In order to assess the performance of the developed models, a statistical analysis has been conducted. The accuracy of the developed models were evaluated using coefficient of determination (R2), root mean square error (RMSE), mean error (ME) and Akaike Information Criteria (AIC).

i ( y, - yt )

R2 = 1 - -^ (2)

X (y, - y, )2

RMSE =

y, - yi

y, - y,

ME = -^ (4)

AIC = N(ln SSE) + 2Nv (5) where yi denotes the measured value, yi refers to the predicted value, yi represents the average of the

measured values of y, SSE is the sum of square of error between observed and predicted soil moisture contents, Nvis the number of independent variables included in the model, and N is the total number of observations.

Negative and positive values of ME indicate under-estimation and over-estimation of PTFs for given parameters, respectively.ME is a measure of prediction bias. RMSE is an absolute measure of the predictive accuracy of the model. It defines the expected magnitude of the prediction error. If the value of RMSE is smaller, then there will be

smaller deviation or greater agreement between the predicted and measured values. The best condition yields the smallest RMSE and ME, and largest R2. The models have different input requirements in terms of the number of soil properties to be specified a priori. A model may yield small errors at the cost of more parameters, and hence parameter parsimony is an important criterion in model selection. This factor may be accounted for in the AIC, which has been used in earlier model discrimination studies by Russo (1988). A model with minimum AIC is considered best. In addition to R2, RMSE and ME, the other two statistical criteria were used for the evaluation of models to estimate saturated hydraulic conductivity based on the approach presented by Tietje and Hennings (1996). Geometric mean error ratio (GMER) and geometric standard deviation of the error ratio (GSDER) are those additional statistical criteria which were calculated from the error ratio (rk) of measured saturated hydraulic conductivity (ks)m versus predicted saturated hydraulic conductivity (ks)p values:

rk = TPT (6)

GMER = exp [i £"=i in(rfe)](7)

GSDER = exp £f=1 [ln(rk) - in(GM£fl)]2]2 j(8)

The GMER equals to 1 corresponds to an exact matching between measured and predicted saturated hydraulic conductivity; the GMER<1 indicates that predicted values are generally underestimated; GMER>1 points to over prediction. The GSDER equals to 1 corresponds to a perfect matching and it grows with deviation from measured data. The best model will, therefore, give a GMER close to 1 and a smaller GSDER.

3. Results and discussion

In Figure 1, dots show the location of the study area of the agricultural and forest site. In agricultural site five pits were dug out and samples were collected at different depths from surface layer down to 150cm. The samples were taken out at every 20cm depth interval up to 150cm. At each depth all the physical and hydraulic properties were measured in the laboratory. In agricultural site, all soil layers had very high sand (S) contents, ranging from 41 to 89%, silt (Si) contents ranging from 10 to 52% and clay (C) contents of around 1 to 5%. Bulk density (BD) increased with soil depth, ranging from 1.36 to 1.69 g/cm3.The highest values were found in the middle of the profile, at 50-90 cm depth. Porosity (P)was in the range of 33% to 44%. Bulk density is one of the very important physical properties, which affects the soil water retention characteristics of the soil. These variations in bulk density and clay content influence the water retention properties, especially in the wet region. The amount of the organic matter (OM) was decreasing towards the bottom layer. It was varying from 0.24 to 2.52%. More the organic matter more was its water holding capacity. Laboratory measurements showed that the sampled soils were more or less homogeneous throughout their profiles and were assumed to be coarse textured based on the mean sand fraction, bulk density and organic matter content. Soils were classified as loamy sand, sandy loam, sand and silty loam based on the USDA system of soil texture triangle.

For the loamy sands, water contents were varying from 0.05to 0.08 (cm3/cm3) at -33kPa and 0.03 to 0.05(cm3/cm3) at -1500kPa

in site-1. But there was drastically increase in water contents of loamy sands from 0.24 to 0.27 at -33 kPa and 0.16 to 0.19 at -1500kPa in the site-4. At different depths, not much variation was found. In sandy soils, water contents varied from 0.05(cm3/cm3) at -33kPa and 0.02(cm3/cm3) at -1500kPa. But in sandy loam soils, water content drastically increased from 0.21to 0.29 (cm3/cm3) at -33kPa and 0.11 to 0.19(cm3/cm3) at -1500kPa. In silty loam soils water content was 0.25 to 0.26at -33kPaand 0.16 to 0.17at -1500kPa. It can be observed that, the water retention data for different horizons (for the Pavanje river basin soils) is fairly similar. There were only slight differences between the data, particularly at high suctions. The reason for this is that, at these suctions soil texture is the dominant factor controlling water retention. As the matric potential increased, the water content decreased. This is mainly because the water retained at lower tensions is dependent on soil structure, whereas at higher tensions it is dependent on particle-size distribution and soil mineralogy. Saturated hydraulic conductivity was varying from 1.16 to 10.31cm/hr for sandy loam textured soils, in loamy sand textured soils it ranges from 4.46 to 12.68 cm/hr and 13.92 to 6.48 cm/hr for sandy soils.

In the forested hilllslope soils pits were dug out and soil samples were collected at different elevations distributed from the crest to the footof the forested hillslopes.The sampling locations are referred to as 120m to 30m from the crest to the footslope. At each elevation, at seven different depths or soil layers with the thickness of 10 cm, 20 cm, 30 cm, 40 cm, 50 cm, 60 cm and 75 cm, physical and hydraulic properties were measured. Compared to the soil at agricultural field, the soil at the forested hillslopes had less sand contents ranging from 30 to 57% and more gravel contents ranging from 11 to 51%, silt from 14 to 44% and clay content are very less from 0 to 5%. Porosity was ranging from 32% to 52%. Bulk density was ranging from 1.22 to 1.69g/cm3and is one of the very important physical properties, which affects the soil water retention characteristics of the soil. Organic matter content is more for the forested hillslopes than the agricultural field. It was varying from 0.65 to 7.49%. Overall, the soils were quite homogeneous throughout their profiles with respect to particle size distribution, bulk density and organic matter content. Soils could be considered as coarse textured soils like loamy sand, sand and sandy loam soils based on USDA system of soil texture triangle.

For each location, hydraulic properties (SWRC and ks) of seven soil layers with the same thickness were determined. Six pressure heads (-33, -100, -300, -500, -1000, -1500 kPa) were considered for each soil sample and obtained the moisture retention data for all the samples. Overall, fifty six sets of soil water retention and saturated hydraulic conductivity data were analyzed in this study. It was observed that, in most of the elevations, soils were sandy loam textured. Only at 40m and 90m elevations, the soils were loamy sand, and at 50 m elevations only two soil samples were sand and rest of all were loamy sand. It could be observed that not much difference in texture was found in soils of different depths in the same pits. In sandy soils, water contents varied from 0.18 to 0.19 (cm3/cm3) at -33 kPa and 0.06 (cm3/cm3) at -1500 kPa. For the loamy sands, water contents were varying from 0.17 to 0.20 (cm3/cm3) at -33 kPa and 0.06 to 0.09 (cm3/cm3) at -1500 kPa. But in sandy loam textured soils, water content drastically increased from 0.18 to 0.28 (cm3/cm3) at -33 kPa and 0.07 to 0.13(cm3/cm3) at -1500 kPa.Saturated hydraulic conductivity was varying from 1.91 to 7.98 cm/hr for sandy loam textured soils, in loamy sand textured soils ranges from 2.57 to 6.49 cm/hr and 10.45 to 12.14 cm/hr for sandy soils.

3.1. Development of empirical relationship between soil water retention curve and saturated hydraulic conductivity

In this study, the laboratory determination of soil moisture retention characteristics and saturated hydraulic conductivity were carried out for the soils of Pavanje river basin, located in coastal region of Karnataka, India. The texture of soils in this area is mainly sandy loam, loamy sand, sand and silty loam. A total of hundred and one soil samples were collected from both agricultural and forest soils in the above said area.

Table 1.Descriptive statistics of soil properties used to derive the empirical relationship to estimate the soil water retention curves.

variables Calibration data set Validation data set

Min Max Mean SD Min Max Mean SD

Hydraulic properties of agricultural sandy loam textured soils 6(h) (cm3/cm3) 0.05 0.26 0.15 0.05 0.11 0.27 0.18 0.04

ks(cm/hr) 1.16 10.31 5.89 2.82 5.46 8.64 7.41 1.32

Hydraulic properties of agricultural loamy sand textured soils 6(h) (cm3/cm3) 0.03 0.26 0.13 0.08 0.02 0.27 0.10 0.09

ks(cm/hr) 5.04 12.68 10.06 2.84 4.46 16.48 8.47 5.30

Hydraulic properties of forest sandy loam textured soils 6(h) (cm3/cm3) 0.07 0.29 0.15 0.05 0.06 0.28 0.14 0.06

ks(cm/hr) 1.91 7.7 4.43 1.69 5.61 7.98 6.97 0.99

Hydraulic properties of forest loamy textured soils 6(h) (cm3/cm3) 0.06 0.20 0.12 0.04 0.08 0.20 0.14 0.03

ks(cm/hr) 2.57 12.14 5.56 2.69 2.87 4.64 3.71 0.67

where6(h) is soil water retention (cm3/cm3), ks is saturated hydraulic conductivity (cm/hr), SD is standard deviation

SoilExtensive laboratory measurements (physical and hydraulic properties) were done for each soil sample. Soil water retention curve data was obtained through pressure plate apparatus. This has been used to develop an empirical relationship to derive the approximate soil moisture retention curve at the places in Pavnje river basin. Here both water retention curve and saturated hydraulic conductivity were measured in the laboratory and then developed an empirical relationship to approximate soil moisture retention curve from the saturated hydraulic conductivity data. The statistics of hydraulic properties used to develop these relationships are summarized in the Table l.The present study considered the sandy loam and loamy sand textured soils separately for both agricultural and forested soils and developed the relationship. The developed empirical relationships between the soil water retention curve and saturated hydraulic conductivity are summarized in the Table 2.

Table 2.Formulae for soil water retention curves in terms of saturated hydraulic conductivity.

Types of soil Empirical equation

Agricultural-sandy loam 8(h) = 0.15922 4 - 0.09708e~ -(0.01148 ks +0.0015

Agricultural- loamy sand 8(h) = 0.04781 - t- 0.06611e -(0.0039^5+0.0002

Forest-sandy loam 8(h) = 0.10825 - t- 0.12881e -(0.0074 ts+0.0003 |ft|)

Forest-loamy sand 8(h) = 0.06515 - t- 0.14066e -(0.0293 ¿5+0.0002 |ft|)

where0(h) is soil water retention (cm3/cm3), ks is saturated hydraulic conductivity (cm/hr), h is soil water pressure expressed in cm of water.

3.2. Statistical evaluation of predicted soil water retention curve

The developed equations have four constants for each type of soil textures and locations. The present study evaluated the performances of developed equations with R2, RMSE, ME and AIC values. For all types of soils, calibration set as well as validation set, both have shown good results (Table 3). R2 values for validation set were quite good when compared to the calibration set. R2 values vary between 0.687-0.862 for calibration set, and for validation set it was 0.713-0.895. RMSE values of the calibration set for agricultural sandy loam and loamy sand were 0.029 and 0.013 and that for forest sandy loam and loamy sand were 0.023 and 0.015 respectively. For validation set, the values were 0.022 and 0.021 for sandy loam and 0.033 and 0.019 for loamy sand of agricultural and forest soils respectively. The corresponding ME values show small errors in both calibration and validation sets.The under prediction of water retention curve has been observed for all the soils except in agricultural loamy sand in the calibration set. In validation set, only the forested sandy loam soils show smaller under prediction of water retention curve. The model can be a good one, if it has low AIC values. In present study also smaller AIC values can be seen.

Table 3.Statistical properties of measured water retention curves with that of estimated ones.

Types of Calibration data set Validation data set

soil R2 RMSE ME AIC R2 RMSE ME AIC

Ag-SL 0.687 0.0288 -0.0007 -301.093 0.820 0.0216 0.0132 -124.145

Ag- LS 0.734 0.0133 0.0043 -309.557 0.844 0.0210 0.0183 -186.974

Fr-SL 0.780 0.0228 -0.0013 -422.096 0.713 0.0329 -0.0013 -102.412

Fr-LS 0.862 0.0149 -0.0014 -347.669 0.895 0.0190 0.0116 -131.694

whereR2 is coefficient of determination, RMSEis root mean square error, ME is mean error, AIC is Akaike Information Criteria, Ag is agricultural soil, Fr is forest soil, LS is loamy sand, SL is sandy loam.

4. Conclusion

An understanding of hydrological processes is essential for assessing water resources as well as the changes to the resource caused by changes in the land use or climate. There is a relative abundance of literature dealing with the theory and application of soil hydraulic properties in different places of the world, but there are no systematic studies that give detailed description of soil hydraulic properties on Pavanje river basin soils. Research carried out on an effective representation of water retention curves for soils from the coastal region of Karnataka, India is not available in the literature. This article is the first study in the region under consideration. This information is needed for improving and understanding of the effects of soil management or land use on soil profile hydrology. This study was intended to help fill this gap by measuring soil hydraulic properties of these soils and utilize the results and compare the results to validate their applicability. The soils from two different land covers were successfully characterized thereby providing the basic information needed to fulfill the requirements for developing models.It was observed that most of the soils in the agricultural land and forested hillslopeswere sandy loam textured. There was not much difference found in soils of different depths in the same pits. The water retention characteristics for both soils were generally well defined with little variability between the two land covers. The focus of the research described in this paper was to characterize the hydraulic properties using laboratory and indirect estimation techniques. Here an empirical relationship was developed to predict soil water retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity for sandy loam and loamy sand textured soils of both agricultural and forested hillslopes. Model predictions were compared to results obtained using direct methods. The results obtained from the prediction of soil moisture retention curve from saturated hydraulic conductivity, shows that the developed relationship are reasonably useful to get the soil moisture retention curve for the soils of agricultural and forested hillslopes of the Pavanje river basin soils.

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