Soil Research Soil Research Society
Soil, land care and environmental research
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Effect of watertable depth on evaporation and salt accumulation from saline groundwater

D. A. Rose A , F. Konukcu B and J. W. Gowing A C
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU, United Kingdom.

B Trakya University, Tekirdag Agricultural Faculty, Department of Agricultural Construction and Irrigation, 59030 Tekirdag, Turkey.

C Corresponding author. Email: J.W.Gowing@ncl.ac.uk

Australian Journal of Soil Research 43(5) 565-573 https://doi.org/10.1071/SR04051
Submitted: 20 April 2004  Accepted: 4 March 2005   Published: 8 August 2005

Abstract

When the evaporative demand is greater than the ability of the soil to conduct water in the liquid phase, the soil profile above a watertable exhibits a liquid-vapour discontinuity, known as the evaporation front, that affects the depth of salinisation and the rate of evaporation. We conducted experiments on a sandy loam with shallow saline watertables under high isothermal evaporative demand (24 mm/day), monitoring rates of evaporation from the soil and upward movement of groundwater, and observing profiles of soil water and salinity over periods of up to 78 days. Three zones were distinguished in the soil profile: a zone of liquid flow above the watertable, a zone of vapour flow close to the surface, and an intermediate transition zone in which mixed liquid-vapour flow occurred. The vapour-flow zone above the evaporation front appeared after a few days and progressed downward to depths of 40, 60, and 120 mm, while eventual steady-state rates of evaporation were 1.3, 1.1, and 0.3 mm/day for watertable depths of 300, 450, and 700 mm, respectively. Salts mainly accumulated in the transition zone, suggesting that the depth of the evaporation front should be a criterion to locate and prevent salinisation as a result of capillary flow from a watertable in arid regions.

Additional keywords: bare soil evaporation, capillary flow, salinisation.


References


Bastiaanssen WGM, Kabat P, Menenti M (1989) A new simulation model of bare soil evaporation in deserts, EVADES. The Winand Staring Centre for Integrated Land, Soil and Water Research, ICW Note 1938, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Bresler E, Kemper WD (1970) Soil water evaporation as affected by wetting methods and crust formation. Soil Science Society of America Proceedings 34, 3–8.

Chen XY (1992) Evaporation from a salt-encrusted sediment surface: field and laboratory studies. Australian Journal of Soil Research 30, 429–442.
CrossRef |

Elrick DE, Mermoud A, Monnier T (1994) An analysis of solute accumulation during steady-state evaporation in an initially contaminated soil. Journal of Hydrology 155, 27–38.
CrossRef |

Gowing JW, Konukcu F, Rose DA (2005) Evaporative flux from a shallow watertable: the influence of a vapour–liquid phase transition. Journal of Hydrology (In press) ,

Hassan FA, Ghaibeh AS (1977) Evaporation and salt movement in soils in the presence of water table. Soil Science Society of America Journal 41, 470–478.

Idso SB, Reginato RJ, Jackson RD, Kimball BA, Nakayama FS (1974) The three stages of drying of a field soil. Soil Science Society of America Proceedings 38, 831–837.

Jackson RD, Kimball BA, Reginato RJ, Nakayama FS (1973) Diurnal soil-water evaporation: time–depth–flux patterns. Soil Science Society of America Proceedings 37, 505–509.

Jackson RD, Rose DA, Penman HL (1966) Circulation of water in soil under a temperature gradient. Nature, London 205, 314–316.

Konukcu F (1997) Upward transport of water and salt from shallow saline watertables. The University of Newcastle, PhD thesis, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.

Konukcu F, Gowing JW, Rose DA (2002) Simple sensors to achieve fine spatial resolution in continuous monitoring of soil moisture and salinity. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 6, 1043–1051.

Konukcu F, Istanbulluoglu A, Kocaman I (2004) Determination of water content in drying soils: incorporating transition from liquid phase to vapour phase. Australian Journal of Soil Research 42, 1–8.
CrossRef |

Menenti M (1984) Physical aspects and determination of evaporation in deserts applying remote sensing techniques. The Winand Staring Centre for Integrated Land, Soil and Water Research, ICW Report 10, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Nakayama FS, Jackson RD, Kimball BA, Reginato RG (1973) Diurnal soil-water evaporation: chloride movement and accumulation near the soil surface. Soil Science Society of America Proceedings 28, 509–513.

Qayyum MA, Kemper WD (1962) Salt concentration gradients in soil and their effects on evaporation. Soil Science 93, 333–342.

Rockström J, Barron J, Fox P (2003) Water productivity in rain-fed agriculture: challenges and opportunities for smallholder farmers in drought-prone tropical agroecosystems. In ‘Water productivity in agriculture: limits and opportunities for improvement’. (Eds JW Kijne, R Barker, D Molden) pp. 145–162. (CABI Publishing: Wallingford, UK)

Savenije HHG (2004) The importance of interception and why we should delete the term evapotranspiration from our vocabulary. Hydrological Processes 18, 1507–1511.
CrossRef |

Shimojima E, Curtis AA, Turner JV (1990) The mechanism of evaporation from sand columns with restricted and unrestricted water tables using deuterium under turbulent airflow conditions. Journal of Hydrology 117, 15–54.
CrossRef |

Shimojima E, Yoshioka R, Tamagawa I (1996) Salinization owing to evaporation from bare-soil surfaces and its influences on the evaporation. Journal of Hydrology 178, 109–136.
CrossRef |








Rent Article (via Deepdyve) Export Citation Cited By (26)