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Journal Articles Geoderma Year : 2005

Splash distance and size distributions for various soils


Splash is an important process in interrill erosion because it produces movement of soil fragments. However, this process is technically difficult to measure and little is known about its size selectivity. In this study, a splash ring device was used to characterise the spatial variation of the quantity and the aggregate size distribution of splashed soil fragments. Soil aggregates were placed at the centre of an experimental device subjected to a 29 mm h−1 simulated rainfall with a kinetic energy of 17 J mm−1. Splashed soil fragments were collected in concentric rings and analysed for masses and fragment size distributions. Four different soils, with various textures, were tested. Soils fragments were splashed across the whole splash device up to 45 cm from the source, and the quantity of splashed fragments decreased exponentially with the distance. For the four tested soils, the splash parameters were significantly correlated to the results of aggregate stability measurements with r=−0.96 and r=0.95, respectively, for the total splashed mass and the mean weight diameter (MWD) of the whole splashed fragments. The measurement of the splashed fragment size distributions showed that fragments up to 2000 μm were transported by raindrop impacts. The mass percentage of the coarsest fractions of splashed soil fragments exponentially decreased with the distance from the source. The extent of this decrease depends on the soil type. The size distributions of splashed soil fragments were compared with those of soil fragments produced by breakdown. Comparison of splash data to aggregate breakdown data showed an enrichment of the 200–1000 μm size fraction in the splashed fragments. Keywords: Splash; Fragment size distribution; Splash distance; Aggregate breakdown



Dates and versions

insu-00383194 , version 1 (12-05-2009)



Cédric Legout, Sophie Leguédois, Yves Le Bissonnais, Malam O. Issa. Splash distance and size distributions for various soils. Geoderma, 2005, 124 (3-4), pp.279 à 292. ⟨10.1016/j.geoderma.2004.05.006⟩. ⟨insu-00383194⟩
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