Abstract

To have accurate runoff velocity, there is need to improve dye tracer method for estimating surface runoff velocity. This can enhance the calculations of relevant hydrologic parameters that will lead to a better understanding of hydrological processes and soil erosion. In this study, an integrated dye tracer and image processing method (IPV) and dye tracer method (AOV), respectively, were used to estimate runoff velocity under three slope gradients (5°, 10°, and 15°) and three slope positions (up-slope, mid-slope, and down-slope). The results showed more variation in runoff velocity under IPV than AOV. Both IPV and AOV were positively correlated with slope gradient. IPV values were close to AOV ones for slope gradients ≤5°, but were significantly different for slope gradients ≥10°. The mean AOV value was 10.6% higher than that of IPV. Regression analysis showed that compared with AOV, IPV overestimated and underestimated runoff under low and high runoff velocity conditions, respectively. The use of image processing in IPV was advantageous because of its ease of use with fewer artificial errors and its suitability for lateral diffusion of runoff. Irrespectively, additional studies are needed to verify and/or improve further the use of this method in runoff velocity analysis.

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