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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Bonta-Rao Method for Estimating Peak Flows and Frequencies from Small Agricultural Watersheds


Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: December 15, 2006
Publication Date: July 1, 2008
Citation: Bonta, J.V., 2008. Bonta-Rao method for estimating peak flows and frequencies from small agricultural watersheds. In: Singh, V.P., editor. Hydrology and Hydraulics. Highlands Ranch, CO: Water Resources Publications. p. 647-668.

Technical Abstract: A summary of a promising method for estimating peak runoff rates and return periods from small agricultural watersheds is presented. Precipitation and runoff data were analyzed in a systematic method using the CREAMS watershed model. Dimensionless Huff curves were used with the model to synthesize the frequency distributuion of peak runoff rates from an experimental watershed at Coshocton, Ohio. The frequency distributions of synthesized and observed peak flows were found to agree with each other when the return periods of causal precipitation and simulated peak flows were in agreement. This observation occurred at an optimal antecedent soil water. A sensitivity study of model inputs showed that the method is insensitive to some uncertain inputs. Although the method has several desirable features for practical application, it should be investigated further on other watersheds and using different models. This work led to a stochastic storm generator. The steps outlining the application of the method are presented, along with suggestions for further research.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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