Probabilistic Simplified and Detailed Subsurface Drainage Water Quality Modeling of Nitrate Leaching

by Alaa El-Sadek,
Mona Radwan,

Abstract: A transparent uncertainty structure is derived for simplified and detailed conceptual nitrate leaching as a result of a probabilistic modelling procedure. The uncertainty structure consists of rainfall and evapotranspiration input uncertainties and models uncertainties for different separate parts of the model structure. The calibration of the models can be based on this uncertainty structure, so that unbiased models parameters are derived. The uncertainty structure can also be used for the efficient assessment of the total uncertainty in the model results and the contribution of the different uncertainty sources. Weighing out the uncertainties from model assumptions (fundamental uncertainties) and the uncertainties resulting from the data (operational uncertainties), efficient measures for the models can define improvement. Applying the methodology to the Lovinkhoeve, The Netherlands, it is shown that the rainfall-input uncertainty is one of the major uncertainty sources. This uncertainty source has therefore a detailed description in this study.

Subject Headings: Uncertainty principles | Water quality | Subsurface drainage | Structural models | Leaching | Nitrates | Probability | Hydrologic models | Groundwater | Data processing | Rainfall | Evapotranspiration | Netherlands

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