10 May 2021
10 May 2021
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

Benchmark tests for separating n time components of runoff with one stable isotope tracer

Simon Hoeg Simon Hoeg
  • Water Research Agency, D-69257 Wiesenbach, Germany

Abstract. A validation of the recently introduced iterative extension of the standard two-component hydrograph separation method is presented. The data for testing this method are retrieved from a random rainfall generator and a rainfall-runoff model composed of linear reservoirs. The results show that it is possible to reconstruct the simulated event water response of a given random model input by applying the iterative separation model and using a single stable isotope tracer. The benchmark model also covers the partially delayed response of event water so that a situation can be simulated in which pre-event water is rapidly mobilized. It is demonstrated how mathematical constraints, such as an ill-conditioned linear equation system, may influence the separation of the event water response. In addition, it is discussed how the volume weighted separated event water response can serve as an estimator for a time-varying backward travel time distribution.

Simon Hoeg

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • AC1: 'Comment on hess-2021-213 - Additional graphics to better visualize the discussion in section 4.3', Simon Hoeg, 18 May 2021
    • AC2: 'Reply on AC1', Simon Hoeg, 11 Jul 2021
  • RC1: 'Comment on hess-2021-213', Anonymous Referee #1, 28 Aug 2021
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC1', Simon Hoeg, 08 Sep 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on hess-2021-213', Anonymous Referee #2, 18 Oct 2021
    • AC4: 'Reply on RC2', Simon Hoeg, 31 Oct 2021

Simon Hoeg

Simon Hoeg


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Short summary
Stable isotopes can be used to analyse runoff generation processes in river basis. The current study validates a new method that is based on an iterative extension of the steady-state balance equations for tracer mass and volume flow. It is demonstrated how mathematical constraints may influence the applicability of the new method. In addition, it is discussed how the new method can be used for the analysis of water travel times in a river basin.