Determining a composite value for the saturated hydraulic conductivity in a recharge area of the Guarani Aquifer System, using pedotransfer functions
Determinação de um valor composto para a condutividade hidráulica saturada em uma área de recarga do Sistema Aquífero Guarani, utilizando funções pedotransfer
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The saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks ) is an essential property for modeling water and contaminants movement into aquifers. However, Ks is extremely variable, even when considering nearby locations, which poses a challenge for modeling at catchment scales. Field measurements of Ks are most of the time expensive, time-consuming and labor-intensive. This study aimed to obtain, for modeling purposes, and using pedotransfer functions (PTFs), a composite value of Ks at a catchment scale, in a recharge area of the Guarani Aquifer System. Soil samples were taken across the study area, and the Ks for each sampling point were determined by several PTF methods. At the same locations, Ks field measurements were taken using a Guelph permeameter. Average values of Ks for all the sampling points calculated by PTFs were similar to the average value obtained by field measurements. The use of PTFs proved to be a faster and simpler method to efficiently determine the Ks value for the watershed and to capture the stochastic variation in terms of soil pore combination at the watershed scale.