Next, the ITD–MFFA method was applied to analyze the spring EC time series (2013–2020) for all four spring groups. Figure 6 shows the multifractal characteristic results. From Figure 6(a), *h*(*q*) decreases with the increasing *q*; all four spring groups' spring EC time series exhibit multiscale and multifractal characteristics. The *h*(2) value reflects the long-term correlation strength. All corresponding *h*(2) values of the spring groups are <0.5, indicating that each spring group's EC time series displays a negative long-term correlation, i.e., antipersistence. The *h*(2) values decrease in the order of Heihu spring > Tanxi spring > Wangfuchizi spring > Baotu spring; in addition, the antipersistence is the highest for Baotu spring's EC. Figure 6(b) and Table 3 show the multifractal spectrum of the EC time series and the singular spectrum width Δ*α* for each spring group. The variation range is 1.56–1.81, indicating that each spring group's multifractal degree varies. The Wangfuchizi spring's Δ*α* value is the largest, indicating that the corresponding EC time series attain the highest multifractality degree, whereas Tanxi, Baotu, and Heihu springs' values considerably fluctuate.

Table 3

Spring . | Long-term correlation exponent h(2)
. | Complexity Δα
. |
---|---|---|

Baotu spring | 0.316 | 1.606 |

Heihu spring | 0.331 | 1.559 |

Tanxi spring | 0.374 | 1.722 |

Wangfuchizi | 0.3839 | 1.814 |

Spring . | Long-term correlation exponent h(2)
. | Complexity Δα
. |
---|---|---|

Baotu spring | 0.316 | 1.606 |

Heihu spring | 0.331 | 1.559 |

Tanxi spring | 0.374 | 1.722 |

Wangfuchizi | 0.3839 | 1.814 |

Figure 6

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