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Modelling of Soil Erosion by Non Conventional Methods

Authors: Ganesh D. Kale, Sheela N. Vadsola


Soil erosion is the most serious problem faced at global and local level. So planning of soil conservation measures has become prominent agenda in the view of water basin managers. To plan for the soil conservation measures, the information on soil erosion is essential. Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE), Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation 1 (RUSLE1or RUSLE) and Modified Universal Soil Loss Equation (MUSLE), RUSLE 1.06, RUSLE1.06c, RUSLE2 are most widely used conventional erosion estimation methods. The essential drawbacks of USLE, RUSLE1 equations are that they are based on average annual values of its parameters and so their applicability to small temporal scale is questionable. Also these equations do not estimate runoff generated soil erosion. So applicability of these equations to estimate runoff generated soil erosion is questionable. Data used in formation of USLE, RUSLE1 equations was plot data so its applicability at greater spatial scale needs some scale correction factors to be induced. On the other hand MUSLE is unsuitable for predicting sediment yield of small and large events. Although the new revised forms of USLE like RUSLE 1.06, RUSLE1.06c and RUSLE2 were land use independent and they have almost cleared all the drawbacks in earlier versions like USLE and RUSLE1, they are based on the regional data of specific area and their applicability to other areas having different climate, soil, land use is questionable. These conventional equations are applicable for sheet and rill erosion and unable to predict gully erosion and spatial pattern of rills. So the research was focused on development of nonconventional (other than conventional) methods of soil erosion estimation. When these non-conventional methods are combined with GIS and RS, gives spatial distribution of soil erosion. In the present paper the review of literature on non- conventional methods of soil erosion estimation supported by GIS and RS is presented.

Keywords: Conventional methods, GIS, non-conventionalmethods, remote sensing, soil erosion modeling

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