Articles | Volume 2, issue 1
Earth Surf. Dynam., 2, 181–195, 2014
Earth Surf. Dynam., 2, 181–195, 2014

Research article 26 Mar 2014

Research article | 26 Mar 2014

Field investigation of preferential fissure flow paths with hydrochemical analysis of small-scale sprinkling experiments

D. M. Krzeminska1, T. A. Bogaard1, T.-H. Debieche2,4, F. Cervi2,5, V. Marc2, and J.-P. Malet3 D. M. Krzeminska et al.
  • 1Water Resources Section, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Delft University of Technology, Delft, Netherlands
  • 2Université d'Avignon et des Pays de Vaucluse, EMMAH UMR1114 INRA-UAPV, 33 rue Louis Pasteur, 84000 Avignon, France
  • 3Institut de Physique du Globe de Strasbourg, CNRS UMR7516, Université de Strasbourg, Ecole et Observatoire des Sciences de la Terre, 5 rue Descartes, 67084 Strasbourg, France
  • 4Water and Environment Team, Geological Engineering Laboratory, Jijel University, P.O.~Box 98, 18000 Jijel, Algeria
  • 5Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Chimica, Ambientale e dei Materiali (DICAM) Università di Bologna, Viale Risorgimento 2, 40136, Bologna, Italy

Abstract. The unsaturated zone largely controls groundwater recharge by buffering precipitation while at the same time providing preferential flow paths for infiltration. The importance of preferential flow on landslide hydrology is recognised in the literature; however, its monitoring and quantification remain difficult.

This paper presents a combined hydrological and hydrochemical analysis of small-scale sprinkling experiments. It aims at showing the potential of such experiments for studying the spatial differences in dominant hydrological processes within a landslide. This methodology was tested in the highly heterogeneous black marls of the Super-Sauze landslide. The tests were performed in three areas characterised by different displacement rates, surface morphology and local hydrological conditions. Special attention was paid to testing the potential of small-scale sprinkling experiments for identifying and characterising preferential flow patterns and dominant hydrological processes.