Hydraulic residence time (HRT) distribution intuitively reflects flow pattern of constructed wetlands. HRT is able to reflect the merits of flow state clearly. Short-circuiting and mixing are the most important factors on HRT, exerting a significant effect on the flow pattern of wetlands. These two conditions must be avoided in wetlands construction and management. Therefore, it is necessary to select the best indicators measuring short-circuiting and mixing for understanding the flow pattern and the hydraulic performance of wetlands. This paper analyzes numerous indicators reflecting the degree of short-circuiting and mixing, displaying that t10 and Morril index t90/t10 are optimal indicators measuring short-circuiting and mixing, respectively, according to truncation and stability analysis based on tracer data. Data analysis showed that when water depth dropped, t10 increased and t90/t10 reduced gradually, indicating the improvement of short-circuiting and mixing. These results were fully consistent with the analysis results of hydraulic parameters, such as effective volume ratio e and the number of serial mixing tanks N. The excellent indicators of short-circuiting and mixing provide theoretical basis for reasonable design and evaluation of constructed wetlands, contributing to promote the hydraulic performance and purification effect.

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