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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Effect of Raindrop Impact Energy and Water Salinity on Infiltration Rates of Sodic Soils1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 49 No. 1, p. 186-190
    Received: Oct 20, 1983
    Accepted: Aug 9, 1984

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  1. M. Agassi,
  2. J. Morin2 and
  3. I. Shainberg3



The effect of water drop impact energy and water salinity on the infiltration rate (IR) of two sodic soils: Calcic Haploxeralf (loess) and Typic Chromoxerert was studied using a rainfall simulation. Rain was applied at two energy levels: high energy rain with kinetic energy of 22.9 J/mm m2 and a low energy rain, with kinetic energy less than 0.01 J/mm m2. In the low energy rain, the initial IR of the soils (44 mm/h) was maintained during a distilled water rain on soils with ESP 2.5, and during saline water rain on soils with ESP values of 6.5 and 17–21.0. In Haploxeralfs with ESP values of 6.5 and 21.0 the final IR (FIR) under low energy rain dropped to 28.8 and 11.5 mm/h respectively. When the same soil and ESP levels were subjected to high energy rain, the FIR during saline water storms dropped to 6–9 mm/h and during distilled water simulated storms the FIR dropped to 0.9–1.4 mm/h. It was concluded, that both the water drop impact energy and the electrolyte concentration in the applied rain have a decisive effect on the IR drop of soils. When the chemical dispersion processes are minimal (low ESP and high water salinity) the mechanical impact of the drops predominate and the crust formation is mainly due to the distintegration of the soil aggregates and their compaction to a thin skin seal. When the soil ESP is high (> 2.5) and the water salinity is low (rain water), chemical dispersion processes have an increasing role in determining the IR of the soils.

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