Different mechanisms are understood to represent the primary sources of the variance of travel time distribution in natural catchments. To quantify the fraction of variance introduced by each component, dispersion coefficients have been earlier defined in the framework of geomorphology-based rainfall-runoff models. In this paper we compare over a wide range of basin sizes and for a variety of runoff conditions the relative role of geomorphological dispersion, related to the heterogeneity of path lengths, and hillslope kinematic dispersion, generated by flow processes within the hillslopes. Unlike previous works, our approach does not focus on a specific study case; instead, we try to generalize results already obtained in previous literature stemming from the definition of a few significant parameters related to the metrics of the catchment and flow dynamics. We further extend this conceptual framework considering the effects of two additional variance-producing processes: the first covers the random variability of hillslope velocities (i.e. of travel times over hillslopes); the second deals with non-uniform production of runoff over the basin (specifically related to drainage density). Results are useful to clarify the role of hillslope kinematic dispersion and define under which conditions it counteracts or reinforces geomorphological dispersion. We show how its sign is ruled by the specific spatial distribution of hillslope lengths within the basin, as well as by flow conditions. Interestingly, while negative in a wide range of cases, kinematic dispersion is expected to become invariantly positive when the variability of hillslope velocity is large.
|Titolo:||Understanding the relative role of dispersion mechanisms across basin scales|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Citazione:||DI LAZZARO, M., Zarlenga, A., & Volpi, E. (2016). Understanding the relative role of dispersion mechanisms across basin scales. ADVANCES IN WATER RESOURCES, 91, 23-36.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|