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A Lagrangian reference frame is used to solve the convection-dispersion equation and interpret water-quality obtained from the Chattahoochee River. The model was calibrated using unsteady concentrations of organic nitrogen, ammonia, and nitrite plus nitrate obtained during June 1977 and verified using data obtained during August 1976. Reaction kinetics of the cascade type are shown to provide a reasonable description of the nitrogen-species processes in the Chattahoochee River. The conceptual model is easy to visualize in the physical sense and the output includes information that is not easily determined from an Eulerian approach, but which is very helpful in model calibration and data interpretation. For example, the model output allows one to determine which data are of most value in model calibration or verification.
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Langrangian model of nitrogen kinetics in the Chattahoochee river