Pedosphere 19(6): 711--718, 2009
ISSN 1002-0160/CN 32-1315/P
©2009 Soil Science Society of China
Published by Elsevier B.V. and Science Press
Modeling of hillslope runoff and soil erosion at rainfall events using cellular automata approach
MA Ting1,2, ZHOU Cheng-Hu1 and CAI Qiang-Guo1
1 State Key Laboratory of Resources and Environmental Information System, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101 (China)
2 Graduate University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049 (China)
ABSTRACT
      A novel quantitative cellular automata (CA) model that simulates and predicts hillslope runoff and soil erosion caused by rainfall events was developed by integrating the local interaction rules and the hillslope surface hydraulic processes. In this CA model, the hillslope surface was subdivided into a series of discrete spatial cells with the same geometric features. At each time step, water and sediment were transported between two adjacent spatial cells. The flow direction was determined by a combination of water surface slope and stochastic assignment. The amounts of interchanged water and sediment were computed using the Chezy-Manning formula and the empirical sediment transport equation. The water and sediment discharged from the open boundary cells were considered as the runoff and the sediment yields over the entire hillslope surface. Two hillslope soil erosion experiments under simulated rainfall events were carried out. Cumulative runoff and sediment yields were measured, respectively. Then, the CA model was applied to simulate the water and soil erosion for these two experiments. Analysis of simulation results indicated that the size of the spatial cell, hydraulic parameters, and the setting of time step and iteration times had a large impact on the model accuracy. The comparison of the simulated and measured data suggested that the CA model was an applicable alternate for simulating the hillslope water flow and soil erosion.
Key Words:  hillslope surface, hydraulic parameters, sediment, simulation, water
Citation: Ma, T., Zhou, C. H. and Cai, Q. G. 2009. Modeling of hillslope runoff and soil erosion at rainfall events using cellular automata approach. Pedosphere. 19(6): 711-718.
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