Articles | Volume 1, issue 4
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 1, 915–923, 1997
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 1, 915–923, 1997

  31 Dec 1997

31 Dec 1997

Physico-empirical approach for mapping soil hydraulic behaviour

G. D'Urso1 and A. Basile2 G. D'Urso and A. Basile
  • 1Dept. S.A.V.A., Agricultural Faculty, University of Molise, Campobasso, Italy
  • tel.:+39.874.98700; fax.:+39.874.411450; E-mail:
  • 2Irrigation Institute (I.S.P.A.I.M.), National Research Council, Ercolano (NA), Italy
  • tel.:+39.81.7717325; fax.:+39.81.7718045; E-mail:


Abstract: Pedo-transfer functions are largely used in soil hydraulic characterisation of large areas. The use of physico-empirical approaches for the derivation of soil hydraulic parameters from disturbed samples data can be greatly enhanced if a characterisation performed on undisturbed cores of the same type of soil is available. In this study, an experimental procedure for deriving maps of soil hydraulic behaviour is discussed with reference to its application in an irrigation district (30 km2) in southern Italy. The main steps of the proposed procedure are: i) the precise identification of soil hydraulic functions from undisturbed sampling of main horizons in representative profiles for each soil map unit; ii) the determination of pore-size distribution curves from larger disturbed sampling data sets within the same soil map unit. iii) the calibration of physical-empirical methods for retrieving soil hydraulic parameters from particle-size data and undisturbed soil sample analysis; iv) the definition of functional hydraulic properties from water balance output; and v) the delimitation of soil hydraulic map units based on functional properties.