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Ľubomír Lichner, Artemi Cerdà, Miroslav Tesař and Kálmán Rajkai

Open access

Jana Votrubova, Michal Dohnal, Tomas Vogel, Martin Sanda and Miroslav Tesar

Abstract

Hydrological monitoring in small headwater catchments provides the basis for examining complex interrelating hydraulic processes that govern the runoff generation. Contributions of different subsurface runoff mechanisms to the catchment discharge formation at two small forested headwater catchments are studied with the help of their natural isotopic signatures. The Uhlirska catchment (Jizera Mts., Czech Republic) is situated in headwater area of the Lusatian Neisse River. The catchment includes wetlands at the valley bottom developed over deluviofluvial granitic sediments surrounded by gentle hillslopes with shallow soils underlain by weathered granite. The Liz catchment (Bohemian Forest, Czech Republic) is situated in headwater area of the Otava River. It belongs to hillslope-type catchments with narrow riparian zones. The soil at Liz is developed on biotite paragneiss bedrock. The basic comparison of hydrological time series reveals that the event-related stream discharge variations at the Uhlirska catchment are bigger and significantly more frequent than at Liz. The analysis of isotope concentration data revealed different behavior of the two catchments during the major rainfall-runoff events. At Uhlirska, the percentage of the direct runoff formed by the event water reaches its maximum on the falling limb of the hydrograph. At Liz, the event water related fraction of the direct outflow is maximal on the rising limb of the hydrograph and then lowers. The hydraulic functioning of the Uhlirska catchment is determined by communication between hillslope and riparian zone compartments.

Open access

Martina Sobotková, Michal Sněhota, Eva Budínová and Miroslav Tesař

Abstract

Isothermal and non-isothermal infiltration experiments with tracer breakthrough were carried out in the laboratory on one intact column (18.9 cm in diameter, 25 cm in height) of sandy loam soil. For the isothermal experiment, the temperature of the infiltrating water was 20°C to the initial temperature of the sample. For the two non-isothermal experiments water temperature was set at 8°C and 6°C, while the initial temperature of the sample was 22°C. The experiments were conducted under the same initial and boundary conditions. Pressure heads and temperatures were monitored in two depths (8.8 and 15.3 cm) inside the soil sample. Two additional temperature sensors monitored the entering and leaving temperatures of the water. Water drained freely through the perforated plate at the bottom of the sample by gravity and outflow was measured using a tipping bucket flowmeter. The permeability of the sample calculated for steady state stages of the experiment showed that the significant difference between water flow rates recorded during the two experiments could not only be justified by temperature induced changes of the water viscosity and density. The observed data points of the breakthrough curve were successfully fitted using the two-region physical non-equilibrium model. The results of the breakthrough curves showed similar asymmetric shapes under isothermal and non-isothermal conditions.

Open access

Michal Dohnal, Tomas Vogel, Jaromir Dusek, Jana Votrubova and Miroslav Tesar

Abstract

Ponded infiltration experiment is a simple test used for in-situ determination of soil hydraulic properties, particularly saturated hydraulic conductivity and sorptivity. It is known that infiltration process in natural soils is strongly affected by presence of macropores, soil layering, initial and experimental conditions etc. As a result, infiltration record encompasses a complex of mutually compensating effects that are difficult to separate from each other. Determination of sorptivity and saturated hydraulic conductivity from such infiltration data is complicated. In the present study we use numerical simulation to examine the impact of selected experimental conditions and soil profile properties on the ponded infiltration experiment results, specifically in terms of the hydraulic conductivity and sorptivity evaluation. The effect of following factors was considered: depth of ponding, ring insertion depth, initial soil water content, presence of preferential pathways, hydraulic conductivity anisotropy, soil layering, surface layer retention capacity and hydraulic conductivity, and presence of soil pipes or stones under the infiltration ring. Results were compared with a large database of infiltration curves measured at the experimental site Liz (Bohemian Forest, Czech Republic). Reasonably good agreement between simulated and observed infiltration curves was achieved by combining several of factors tested. Moreover, the ring insertion effect was recognized as one of the major causes of uncertainty in the determination of soil hydraulic parameters.

Open access

Michal Dohnal, Tomáš Černý, Jana Votrubová and Miroslav Tesař

Abstract

The interception was recognized as an important part of the catchment water balance in temperate climate. The mountainous forest ecosystem at experimental headwater catchment Liz has been subject of long-term monitoring. Unique dataset in terms of time resolution serves to determine canopy storage capacity and free throughfall. Spatial variability of throughfall was studied using one weighing and five tipping bucket rain gauges. The basic characteristics of forest affecting interception process were determined for the Norway spruce stand at the experimental area - the leaf area index was 5.66 - 6.00 m2 m-2, the basal area was 55.7 m2 ha-1, and the crown closure above individual rain gauges was between 19 and 95%. The total interception loss in both growing seasons analyzed was 34.5%. The mean value of the interception capacity determined was about 2 mm. Throughfall exhibited high variability from place to place and it was strongly affected by character of rainfall. On the other hand, spatial pattern of throughfall in average showed low variability.

Open access

Jana Votrubova, Michal Dohnal, Tomas Vogel, Miroslav Tesar, Vladimira Jelinkova and Milena Cislerova

Abstract

Temporal variability of the soil hydraulic properties is still an open issue. The present study deals with results of ponded infiltration experiments performed annually in a grid of permanent measurement points (18 spatial and 14 temporal replicates). Single ring infiltrometers were installed in 2003 at a meadow site in the Bohemian Forest highlands, the Czech Republic. The soil at the plot is coarse sandy loam classified as oligotrophic Eutric Cambisol. Soil water flow below infiltration rings has distinctly preferential character.

The results are marked with substantial interannual changes of observed infiltration rates. Considering just the results from the initial four years of the study, the temporal variability did not exceed the spatial variability detected in individual years. In later years, a shift to extremely high infiltration rates was observed. We hypothesize that it is related to structural changes of the soil profile possibly related to combined effect of soil biota activity, climatic conditions and experimental procedure. Interestingly, the temporal changes can partly be described as fluctuations between seemingly stable infiltration modes. This phenomenon was detected in the majority of rings and was found independent of the initial soil moisture conditions.