Solute transport modeling using morphological parameters of step-pool reaches

Authors

  • Mario A. Jiménez,

    Corresponding author
    1. Escuela de Geociencias y Medio Ambiente, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Medellín, Colombia
    • Corresponding author: M. A. Jiménez, Escuela de Geociencias y Medio Ambiente, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Carrera 80 No 65-223, Block M2, Of. 202, Medellín, Colombia. (malber2j@gmail.com)

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  • Ellen Wohl

    1. Department of Geosciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
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Abstract

[1] Step-pool systems have been widely studied during the past few years, resulting in enhanced knowledge of mechanisms for sediment transport, energy dissipation and patterns of self-organization. We use rhodamine tracer data collected in nine step-pool reaches during high, intermediate and low flows to explore scaling of solute transport processes. Using the scaling patterns found, we propose an extension of the Aggregated Dead Zone (ADZ) approach for solute transport modeling based on the morphological features of step-pool units and their corresponding inherent variability within a stream reach. In addition to discharge, the reach-average bankfull width, mean step height, and the ratio of pool length to step-to-step length can be used as explanatory variables for the dispersion process within the studied reaches. These variables appeared to be sufficient for estimating ADZ model parameters and simulating solute transport in predictive mode for applications in reaches lacking tracer data.

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