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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 91 No. 2, p. 177-182
    Received: Dec 2, 1996

    * Corresponding author(s): laowu@ucracl.ucr.edu
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Evaluation of the Root Zone Water Quality Model Using Field-Measured Data from a Sandy Soil

  1. Laosheng Wu,
  2. W. Chen ,
  3. John M. Baker and
  4. John A. Lamb
  1. D ep. of Soil and Environmental Sciences, Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521
    A grEvo Research Center (formerly Dep. of Soil, Water and Climate, Univ. of Minn.), 703 NORAM Rd. Pikeville, NC 27863
    U SDA-ARS and Dep. of Soil, Water and Climate, Univ. of Minnesota, 439 Borlaug Hall, 1991 Buford Cir., St. Paul, MN 55108.
    D ep. of Soil, Water and Climate, Univ. of Minnesota, 439 Borlaug Hall, 1991 Buford Cir., St. Paul, MN 55108



Testing of simulation models against field-measured data is an important step that must be taken before a model can be used as a management tool. Field soil water contents, intensively measured by time-domain reflectometry (TDR) on a Zimmerman fine sand soil (Argic Udipsamments) in the Minnesota Management System Evaluation Area (MSEA), were used to evaluate the Root Zone Water Quality Model (RZWQM) over two rotated crop growing seasons in 1992 (corn, Zea mays L.) and 1993 [soybean, Glycine max (L.) Merr.]. The model was evaluated based on laboratory-measured soil hydraulic properties. Reasonable agreement exists between the daily TDRmeasured and RZWQM-predicted water contents for the upper soil depths. However, the model overestimated the lower soil profile, leading to a consistent overestimation of the total water depth (TWO) in the entire root zone (0 to 150 cm) during both the 1992 and 1993 growing seasons. The maximum errors in TWD for the entire root zone were 2.47 and 2.77 cm, respectively, in 1992 and 1993. Predictions of solute transport by RZWQM were examined for three herbicides: atrazine [6-chloro-N-ethyl-N′-(l-methylethyl)-l,3,5-triazine-2,4-diamine], alachlor [2-chloro-N-(2,6-diethylphenyl)-N-(methoxymethyl) acetamide], and metribuzin [4-amino-6-(l,l-dimethylethyl)-3- (methylthio)-1,2,4-triazin-5(4H)-one]. Comparison between measured and predicted soil herbicide concentrations averaged over the top 15-cm layer showed that the model matched the temporal changes of the field measurements reasonably well, although the measurements showed that all pesticides were somewhat more persistent over time than the model predicted.

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