Microtopographic Controls on Erosion and Deposition of a Rilled Hillslope in Eastern Tennessee, USA




Li, Yingkui
Lu, Xiaoyu
Washington-Allen, Robert
Li, Yanan

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Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute


Topography plays an important role in shaping the patterns of sediment erosion and deposition of different landscapes. Studies have investigated the role of topography at basin scales, whereas little work has been conducted on hillslopes, partially due to the lack of high-resolution topographic data. We monitored detailed topographic changes of a rilled hillslope in the southeastern United States using terrestrial laser scanning and investigated the influences of various microtopographic factors on erosion and deposition. The results suggest that the contributing area is the most important factor for both rill erosion and deposition. Rills with large contributing areas tend to have high erosion and deposition. Slope is positively related to erosion but negatively related to deposition. Roughness, on the other hand, is positively related to deposition but negatively related to erosion. Higher erosion and lower deposition likely occur on north-facing aspects, possibly because of higher soil moisture resulting from less received solar insolation. Similarly, soil moisture is likely higher in areas with higher terrain wetness index values, leading to higher erosion. This work provides important insight into the sediment dynamic and its microtopographic controls on hillslopes.



terrestrial laser scanning, soil erosion, change detection, quantile regression, topographic factors, Geography and Environmental Studies


Li, Y., Lu, X., Washington-Allen, R. A., & Li, Y. (2022). Microtopographic controls on erosion and deposition of a rilled hillslope in Eastern Tennessee, USA. Remote Sensing, 14(6), 1315.


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