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Estimating Soil Erosion Using the USPED Model and Consecutive Remotely Sensed Land Cover Observations

Jinxun Liu, Shuguang Liu, Larry Tieszen and Mingshi Chen

Summer Computer Simulation Conference 2007 (SCSC 2007)
San Diego, California (USA), July 15-18, 2007


Intensified soil erosion contributes to the degradation of ecosystems. Better estimation of soil erosion across landscapes is a necessary part of understanding ecosystem biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem sustainability. In this study, we used the Unit Stream Power-based Erosion Deposition (USPED) model to estimate the lateral movement of soils across Fort Benning, a military training installation in western Georgia, USA. A land cover weight factor was used in the calculation of surface flow accumulation. The simulation results were compared with observations of the total suspended sediments in stream water for ten watersheds, and showed a significant linear relationship (R2 = 0.72). Erosion estimates of the ten watersheds are also related to the land disturbance index that is a measure of the intensity of military training disturbances. Results suggest that the USPED model is an effective tool to quantify erosion and deposition at military installations.

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