Discrete-storm water-table fluctuation method to estimate episodic recharge.

By: , and 



We have developed a method to identify and quantify recharge episodes, along with their associated infiltration-related inputs, by a consistent, systematic procedure. Our algorithm partitions a time series of water levels into discrete recharge episodes and intervals of no episodic recharge. It correlates each recharge episode with a specific interval of rainfall, so storm characteristics such as intensity and duration can be associated with the amount of recharge that results. To be useful in humid climates, the algorithm evaluates the separability of events, so that those whose recharge cannot be associated with a single storm can be appropriately lumped together. Elements of this method that are subject to subjectivity in the application of hydrologic judgment are values of lag time, fluctuation tolerance, and master recession parameters. Because these are determined once for a given site, they do not contribute subjective influences affecting episode-to-episode comparisons. By centralizing the elements requiring scientific judgment, our method facilitates such comparisons by keeping the most subjective elements openly apparent, making it easy to maintain consistency. If applied to a period of data long enough to include recharge episodes with broadly diverse characteristics, the method has value for predicting how climatic alterations in the distribution of storm intensities and seasonal duration may affect recharge.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Discrete-storm water-table fluctuation method to estimate episodic recharge.
Series title Groundwater
DOI 10.1111/gwat.12177
Volume 53
Issue 2
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
Contributing office(s) National Research Program - Western Branch
Description 11 p.
First page 282
Last page 292
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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