A Convective Model Conm That Simulates Solute Redistribution Caused by Water Table Fluctuations

  •  Cesáreo Landeros-Sánchez    
  •  Ma. del Refugio Castañeda-Chávez    
  •  Fabiola Lango-Reynoso    
  •  Itzel Galaviz-Villa    


A study of the solute redistribution caused by water-table fluctuations in experimental packed columns of fine sand and a sandy clay loam soil using potassium chloride as a non-reactive tracer is modelled. With the water table initially at the soil surface, the redistribution of surface applied chloride down the profile was measured after the water table was lowered, then after it was raised again to the soil surface, and then after it was again lowered. In each case, sufficient time was allowed before measurements of chloride were made for the soil-water profile in the column to approach equilibrium conditions with the water table. A simple convection model (CONM) was developed and used to simulate the chloride redistribution. This was compared with the LEACHM model of Wagenet and Hutson based on the convection-dispersion equation, and the physical basis of each critically discussed. It was found that the experimental results in general agreed better with simulated results using CONM than with those using LEACHM. It was concluded that the chloride movement observed in the experimental columns was dominantly convective. The application of this work to optimise fertiliser requirements when subirrigation-drainage systems are employed is discussed.

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