Damping Effect of an Unsaturated-Saturated System on Tempospatial Variations of Pressure Head and Specific Flux

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Chen Yang1, You-Kuan Zhang1 and Xiuyu Liang2, (1)Nanjing University, Nanjing, China, (2)Nanjing University, Iowa City, IA, United States
Damping effect of an unsaturated-saturated system on tempospatialvariations of pressurehead and specificflux was investigated. The variance and covariance of both pressure head and specific flux in such a system due to a white noise infiltration were obtained by solving the moment equations of water flow in the system and verified with Monte Carlo simulations. It was found that both the pressure head and specific flux in this case are temporally non-stationary. The variance is zero at early time due to a deterministic initial condition used, then increases with time, and approaches anasymptotic limit at late time.Both pressure head and specific flux arealso non-stationary in space since the variance decreases from source to sink. The unsaturated-saturated systembehavesasa noise filterand it damps both the pressure head and specific flux, i.e., reduces their variations and enhances their correlation. The effect is stronger in upper unsaturated zone than in lower unsaturated zone and saturated zone. As a noise filter, the unsaturated-saturated system is mainly a low pass filter, filtering out the high frequency components in the time series of hydrological variables. The damping effect is much stronger in the saturated zone than in the saturated zone.