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Rainfall-runoff simulation in Karst dominated areas based on a coupled conceptual hydrological model

Zhou, Qing, Chen, Lu, Singh, Vijay P., Zhou, Jianzhong, Chen, Xiaohong, Xiong, Lihua
Journal of hydrology 2019
groundwater, hydrologic models, karsts, limestone, runoff, soil, subsurface flow, watersheds
Rainfall-runoff processes in the karst dominated regions are of great importance. However, not all areas in a karst-dominated river basin are covered by typical limestone and both limestone and soil cover may exist. This study proposes a coupled conceptual hydrological model for simulating the rainfall-runoff processes in karst-dominated areas. The model, named as K-XAJ, couples the traditional Xinanjiang (XAJ) model and a two reservoir-based karst model for simulating runoff in both the karst area and the non-karst area in the Lijiang River basin. Simulated results demonstrated that the proposed K-XAJ model satisfactorily simulated the rainfall-runoff processes. Compared with the traditional XAJ model, the K-XAJ model produced better forecasts. The peak flow predicted by the K-XAJ model was larger than that by the XAJ model, but the interflow routed by the K-XAJ model was significantly smaller than that by the XAJ model. The magnitude of groundwater predicted by the K-XAJ model was greater. This study thus provides a new way to simulate rainfall-runoff processes in karst areas.