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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Risk Assessment Using the Rangeland Hydrology and Erosion Model

Location: Watershed Management Research

Project Number: 2052-13610-011-02-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 25, 2012
End Date: Sep 24, 2017

The Rangeland Hydrology and Erosion Model (RHEM) is a new process-based model developed by the USDA-ARS. The model has been developed for assessing the runoff, soil erosion rate, and sediment delivery rate and volume on rangelands at the hillslope scale for a rainfall event. Evaluation of RHEM performance is a key element for its acceptance as a useful tool. Therefore, the objective of the research work is to evaluate the performance of RHEM and its new components especially when it is applied to disturbed rangelands.

In order to accomplish the objective of the research, the following tasks will be performed: 1. Evaluate the new width (w) and hydraulic friction (ft) equations for concentrated flow in RHEM using independent plot-scale data. 2. Evaluate the current parameterization equation for splash and sheet erodibility (Kss), and hydraulic conductivity (Ke) in RHEM on disturbed rangeland, and if necessary develop new parameterization equations specifically for disturbed rangeland. 3. Evaluate the RHEM concentrated flow erodibility approach (Kw(max)) and its parameterization equations using independent data. 4. Evaluate the performance of RHEM for disturbed rangelands. The performance of the model will be evaluated without calibration as well as by optimizing some of the sensitive parameters such as Ke .The new probabilistic approach for partitioning overland flow into concentrated and sheet flow as well as parameterization of hydraulic friction (ft) for routing the overland flow will be also tested.

Last Modified: 10/17/2017
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