Abstract

A modified Green–Ampt model (MGAM) was proposed to simulate infiltrations into layered soil profiles with the entrapped air under unsteady rainfall conditions. To account for the effects of the air resistance, the saturation coefficient, actual water content, air bubbling pressure, and water bubbling pressure were introduced in the model. One-dimensional infiltration-runoff experiments were then conducted in multi-layered soil columns, under unsteady rainfall conditions, to evaluate the performance of the MGAM model. The cumulative infiltration, runoff rate, and water content of the soil, calculated by MGAM, were compared with the observed data and the results, calculated by the traditional Green–Ampt model (TGAM), the Bouwer Green–Ampt model (BGAM), and the Mein–Larson model (MLGAM), respectively. The results indicated that the cumulative infiltration, runoff rate, and soil water content, calculated by MGAM, were in better agreement with the observed results than previous models. A parameter sensitivity of MGAM was also analyzed. It was found that the sensitivity of the saturated coefficient was high in the first soil layer, and those of the air bubbling pressure and initial moisture deficit were high or medium in the first and second layers, while those of the other parameters were relatively low.