What mainly controls recession flows in river basins?

Biswal, Basudev and Nagesh Kumar, D (2014) What mainly controls recession flows in river basins? Advances in Water Resources, 65. pp. 25-33. ISSN 0309-1708

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The ubiquity of the power law relationship between dQ / dt and Q for recession periods (-dQ / dt = kQα, Q being discharge at the basin outlet at time t) clearly hints at the existence of a dominant recession flow process that is common to all real basins. It is commonly assumed that a basin, during recession events, functions as a single phreatic aquifer resting on a impermeable horizontal bed or the Dupuit-Boussinesq (DB) aquifer, and with time different aquifer geometric conditions arise that give different values of α and k. The recently proposed alternative model, geomorphological recession flow model, however, suggests that recession flows are controlled primarily by the dynamics of the active drainage network (ADN). In this study we use data for several basins and compare the above two contrasting recession flow models in order to understand which of the above two factors dominates during recession periods in steep basins. Particularly, we do the comparison by selecting three key recession flow properties: (1) power law exponent α, (2) dynamic dQ / dt-Q relationship (characterized by k) and (3) recession timescale (time period for which a recession event lasts). Our observations suggest that neither drainage from phreatic aquifers nor evapotranspiration significantly controls recession flows. Results show that the value of α and recession timescale are not modeled well by DB aquifer model. However, the above mentioned three recession curve properties can be captured satisfactorily by considering the dynamics of the ADN as described by geomorphological recession flow model, possibly indicating that the ADN represents not just phreatic aquifers but the organization of various sub-surface storage systems within the basin

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IITH Creators:
IITH CreatorsORCiD
Biswal, Basudevhttp://orcid.org/0000-0002-1088-7229
Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This work was partially supported by Indian Institute of Science through post-doctoral fellowship No. R (IA) RA-268(BB/CE)2011–4448) and by Ministry of Earth Sciences, Govt. of India, through Project No. MoES/ATMOS/PP-IX/09. Water table data for the three wells in Shale Hills watershed was obtained from the NSF-supported Shale Hills Susquehanna Critical Zone Observatory, for which the authors thank Christopher J. Duffy, Penn State University. Comments and suggestions by the three reviewers are gratefully acknowledged.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Active drainage network; Dupuit-Boussinesq aquifer; Power law; Recession curves
Subjects: Civil Engineering > Soil Structure Interaction
Divisions: Department of Civil Engineering
Depositing User: Team Library
Date Deposited: 26 Dec 2014 05:26
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2017 11:40
URI: http://raiith.iith.ac.in/id/eprint/1245
Publisher URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.advwatres.2014.01.001
OA policy: http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/issn/0309-1708/
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