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Calibration of caesium-137 measurements to provide quantitative erosion rate data

Land Degradation and Rehabilitation 2(3): 161-175

Calibration of caesium-137 measurements to provide quantitative erosion rate data

The caesium‐137 technique for investigating rates and patterns of soil loss has now been successfully applied in a wide range of environments. However, some uncertainty still surrounds the ability of the technique to provide quantitative estimates of rates of erosion. The wide range of calibration relationships that have been employed by individual workers to derive erosion rates from estimates of the amount of 137Cs (caesium‐137) lost from the soil profile, emphasize the uncertainty involved. Existing calibration procedures, involving both empirical relationships and theoretical models and accounting procedures are reviewed and their limitations and inconsistencies are identified. Further research is required in this important area, if the clear potential of the caesium‐137 technique is to be fully realized.

Accession: 002042078

DOI: 10.1002/ldr.3400020302

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Related references

Quine, T.A.; Walling, D.E., 1991: Rates of soil erosion on arable fields in Britain: quantitative data from caesium-137 measurements. Despite a growing awareness that erosion on arable land in Britain is a potential hazard to long-term productivity, there is still only limited information on the rates involved, particularly long-term values. Use of the caesium-137 (137 Cs) techn...

Quine Timothy A., 1995: Estimation of erosion rates from caesium-137 data; the calibration question. Pages 307-329 1995

Higgitt David L., 1995: Quantifying erosion rates from caesium-137 measurements; a comment on Elliott and Cole-Clark (1993); Estimates of erosion on potato lands on Krasnozems at Dorrigo, N.S.W. using the caesium-137 technique. Australian Journal of Soil Research 33(4): 709-714

Porto, P.; Walling, D.E.; Ferro, V.; D.S.efano, C., 2003: Validating erosion rate estimates provided by caesium-137 measurements for two small forested catchments in Calabria, southern Italy. Increasing concern for problems of soil degradation and the off-site impacts of accelerated erosion has generated a need for improved methods of estimating rates and patterns of soil erosion by water. The use of environmental radionuclides, partic...

Quine, T.A.; Govers, G.; Walling, D.E.; Zhang XinBao; Desmet, P.J.J.; Zhang YuSheng; Vandaele, K., 1997: Erosion processes and landform evolution on agricultural land - new perspectives from caesium-137 measurements and topographic-based erosion modelling. An approach to examining the influence of erosion processes on landform evolution on agricultural land is presented which employs: 137Cs measurements to provide medium-term (~40 years) estimates of rates of landform change; experimental data and a...

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Walling, D.E.; Quine, T.A., 1992: The use of caesium-137 measurements in soil erosion surveys. The principles of caesium-137 measurements in soil erosion surveys are reviewed: spatial distribution of caesium-137 fallout, adsorption of caesium-137 fallout onto soil particles, sediment-associated redistribution of caesium-137, and estimating...

Higgitt David L., 1995: The development and application of caesium-137 measurements in erosion investigations. Pages 287-305 1995

Elliott, G.L.; Campbell, B.L.; Loughran, R.J., 1990: Correlation of erosion measurements and soil caesium-137 content. This paper reports a calibration between measured soil loss from small plots and measured soil 137Cs content (expressed as a percentage loss relative to the 137Cs content of a local stable reference soil). The regression represents a simple and ra...

Walling, D.E.; Bradley, S.B., 1990: Some applications of caesium-137 measurements in the study of erosion, transport and deposition. Caesium-137, a radionuclide originating as fallout generated by the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, can provide the geomorphologist with a valuable tracer for investigating the movement of sediment through the fluvial system. Three example...