Laboratory Study of the Motion Threshold and Temporal Variation of Sediment Concentration in Flow-induced Erosion

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Graduate Student,, Department of Water Engineering, Faculty of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Water Engineering, Faculty of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

3 Soil Science Department, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, university of Tehran, Karaj, Iran


Accelerated soil erosion is the most important degradation factor of soil and water resources. Typically, soil erosion involves the detachment and transport of soil particles by rainfall, shallow surface flow or the interaction of these two factors. Therefore, understanding the motion threshold of sediment particles and temporal variation of sediment concentration in flow-induced can provide a detailed cognition of the processes inducing soil erosion and sediment transport and their eventual interactions. It is also important for increasing the accuracy of soil erosion models. In this study, the particle motion threshold and temporal variation of sediment were studied for a sandy sample at three slopes; 3.1, 5.9, 8.9% and-dunder three flow discharges of 4.78, 7.12 and 9.05 (×10-5 m2 s-1). This study was carried out in the laboratory conditions using a flume with 240 cm long by 40 cm width. The results showed that the Shields curve is not suitable for this study to determine the motion threshold. The threshold stream power of particle motion was determined 0.035 W m-2. Also, with increasing slope and consequently increasing stream power up to 0.05 W m-2, the erosion intensity increased and soil erosion changed from sheet erosion to rill erosion. The results indicate that the formation and development of rill erosion would be the main factor for soil loss and sediment production in hillslopes. Therefore, prevention of rill formation by strip croping, terracing and terrace farming is an effective strategy for soil conservation.


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