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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Water Research, 15 October 2015, Vol.83, pp.205-216
    Description: Estimating respiration and photosynthesis rates in streams usually requires good knowledge of reaeration at the given locations. For this purpose, gas-tracer tests can be conducted, and reaeration rate coefficients are determined from the decrease in gas concentration along the river stretch. The typical procedure for analysis of such tests is based on simplifying assumptions, as it neglects dispersion altogether and does not consider possible fluctuations and trends in the input signal. We mathematically derive the influence of these non-idealities on estimated reaeration rates and how they are propagated onto the evaluation of aerobic respiration and photosynthesis rates from oxygen monitoring. We apply the approach to field data obtained from a gas-tracer test using propane in a second-order stream in Southwest Germany. We calculate the reaeration rate coefficients accounting for dispersion as well as trends and uncertainty in the input signals and compare them to the standard approach. We show that neglecting dispersion significantly underestimates reaeration, and results between sections cannot be compared if trends in the input signal of the gas tracer are disregarded. Using time series of dissolved oxygen and the various estimates of reaeration, we infer respiration and photosynthesis rates for the same stream section, demonstrating that the bias and uncertainty of reaeration using the different approaches significantly affects the calculation of metabolic rates.
    Keywords: Reaeration ; Gas-Tracer Tests ; Whole-Stream Metabolism ; Dispersion ; Oxygen Balance of Streams ; Engineering
    ISSN: 0043-1354
    E-ISSN: 1879-2448
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Hydrology, 27 November 2014, Vol.519, pp.3386-3399
    Description: The travel-time distribution between rivers and groundwater observation points and the mixing of freshly infiltrated river water with groundwater of other origin is of high relevance in riverbank filtration. These characteristics usually are inferred from the analysis of natural-tracer time series, typically relying on a stationary input–output relationship. However, non-stationarity is a significant feature of the riparian zone causing time-varying river-to-groundwater transfer functions. We present a non-stationary extension of nonparametric deconvolution by performing stationary deconvolution with windowed time series, enforcing smoothness of the determined transfer function in time and travel time. The nonparametric approach facilitates the identification of unconventional features in travel-time distributions, such as broad peaks, and the sliding-window approach is an easy way to accommodate the method to dynamic changes of the system under consideration. By this, we obtain time-varying signal-recovery rates and travel-time distributions, from which we derive the mean travel time and the spread of the distribution as function of time. We apply our method to electric-conductivity data collected at River Thur, Switzerland, and adjacent piezometers. The non-stationary approach reproduces the groundwater observations significantly better than the stationary one, both in terms of overall metrics and in matching individual peaks. We compare characteristics of the transient transfer function to base flow which indicates shorter travel times at higher river stages.
    Keywords: Travel-Time Distribution ; Bank Filtration ; Non-Stationarity ; Nonparametric Inference ; Geography
    ISSN: 0022-1694
    E-ISSN: 1879-2707
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  • 3
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  • 4
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  • 5
    In: Water Resources Research, June 2013, Vol.49(6), pp.3406-3422
    Description: Performing stream‐tracer experiments is an accepted technique to assess transport characteristics of streams undergoing hyporheic exchange. Recently, combining conservative and reactive tracers, in which the latter presumably undergoes degradation exclusively within the hyporheic zone, has been suggested to study in‐stream transport, hyporheic exchange, and the metabolic activity of the hyporheic zone. The combined quantitative analysis to adequately describe such tests, however, has been missing. In this paper, we present mathematical methods to jointly analyze breakthrough curves of a conservative tracer (fluorescein), a linearly degrading tracer (resazurin), and its daughter compound (resorufin), which are synchronously introduced into the stream as pulses. In‐stream transport is described by the one‐dimensional advection‐dispersion equation, amended with a convolution term to account for transient storage within the hyporheic zone over a distribution of travel times, transformation of the reactive tracer in the hyporheic zone, and two‐site sorption of the parent and daughter compounds therein. We use a shape‐free approach of describing the hyporheic travel‐time distribution, overcoming the difficulty of identifying the best functional parameterization for transient storage. We discuss how this model can be fitted to the breakthrough curves of all three compounds and demonstrate the method by an application to a tracer test in the third‐order stream Goldersbach in Southern Germany. The entire river water passes once through the hyporheic zone over a travel distance of about 200 m with mean hyporheic residence times ranging between 16 and 23 min. We also observed a secondary peak in the transfer functions at about 1 h indicating a second hyporheic flow path. We could jointly fit the breakthrough curves of all compounds in three monitoring stations and evaluated the parameter uncertainty of the individual and joint fits by a method based on conditional realizations of the hyporheic travel‐time distribution. The approach gives insight into in‐stream transport, hyporheic exchange, metabolic activity, and river‐bed sorption of the stream under investigation. joint analysis of fluorescein, resazurin and resorufin in streams shape‐free inference of hyporheic travel‐time distribution sorption of reactive tracers must not be neglected
    Keywords: Hyporheic Exchange ; Stream Tracer Experiments ; Resazurin ; Travel‐Time Distributions ; Shape‐Free Inference ; Stream‐Tracer Modeling
    ISSN: 0043-1397
    E-ISSN: 1944-7973
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Earth Sciences, 2013, Vol.69(2), pp.349-358
    Description: Performing tracer tests using artificial tracer compounds is a common practice to characterize natural streams regarding their (reactive) transport properties. Recently, the fluorescent compound resazurin was introduced as a reactive stream tracer to quantify hyporheic exchange and metabolic activity of streams. This tracer, together with its reaction product resorufin and a conservative tracer (in our case fluorescein), provides additional information about transport properties of the stream and its hyporheic zone and can therefore overcome restrictions that are commonly affiliated with the use of conservative tracers alone. However, all previously published studies using this tracer system were based on manual sampling of the water. This usually limits the number of measurements and thus the achievable temporal resolution, and potentially endangers data quality due to inadequate handling of samples. In this paper, a modified version of the GGUN-FL30 on-line fluorometer is presented in which the optics have been modified to allow measuring the concentrations of all three tracers simultaneously at intervals of 10 s. Experiments under controlled and natural conditions showed that the performance of the on-line fluorometer regarding tracer separation efficiency and practical detection limits is comparable to a high-performance laboratory spectrofluorometer. Furthermore, suggestions are given on how to correct tracer signal fluctuations caused by temporal changes in temperature and pH that might occur during a field tracer test.
    Keywords: Fluorometer ; Tracer test ; Groundwater/surface water interaction ; Resazurin
    ISSN: 1866-6280
    E-ISSN: 1866-6299
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  • 7
    In: Water Resources Research, May 2013, Vol.49(5), pp.3024-3037
    Description: concurrent tests of conservative and reactive tracers in streams joint analysis of the tracers improved the estimation of hyporheic parameters Markov chain Monte Carlo methods used to infer parameter distributions Knowledge about the strength and travel times of hyporheic exchange is vital to predict reactive transport and biogeochemical cycling in streams. In this study, we outline how to perform and analyze stream tracer tests using pulse injections of fluorescein as conservative and resazurin as reactive tracer, which is selectively transformed to resorufin when exposed to metabolically active zones, presumably located in the hyporheic zone. We present steps of preliminary data analysis and apply a conceptually simple mathematical model of the tracer tests to separate effects of in‐stream transport from hyporheic exchange processes. To overcome the dependence of common parameter estimation schemes on the initial guess, we derive posterior parameter probability density functions using an adaptive Markov chain Monte Carlo scheme. By this, we can identify maximum‐likelihood parameter values of in‐stream transport, strength of hyporheic exchange, distribution of hyporheic travel times as well as sorption and reactivity coefficients of the hyporheic zone. We demonstrate the approach by a tracer experiment at River Goldersbach in southern Germany (60 L/s discharge). In‐stream breakthrough curves were recorded with online fluorometers and jointly fitted to simulations of a one‐dimensional reactive transport model assuming an exponential hyporheic travel‐time distribution. The findings show that the additional analysis of resazurin not only improved the physical basis of the modeling, but was crucial to differentiate between surface transport and hyporheic transient storage of stream solutes. Parameter uncertainties were usually small and could not explain parameter variability between adjacent monitoring stations. The latter as well as a systematic underestimation of the tailing are due to structural errors of the model, particularly the exponential hyporheic travel‐time distribution. Mean hyporheic travel times were in the range of 12 min, suggesting that small streambed structures dominate hyporheic exchange at the study site.
    Keywords: Hyporheic Exchange ; Stream Tracer Experiments ; Travel‐Time Distributions ; Resazurin ; Resorufin
    ISSN: 0043-1397
    E-ISSN: 1944-7973
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Earth Sciences, 2013, Vol.69(2), pp.359-372
    Description: First results of a multi-disciplinary hyporheic monitoring study are presented from the newly established Steinlach Test Site in Southern Germany. The site is located in a bend of the River Steinlach (mean discharge of 1.8 m³/s) underlain by an alluvial sandy gravel aquifer connected to the stream. The overall objective is a better understanding of hyporheic exchange processes at the site and their interrelations with microbial community dynamics and biochemical reactions at the stream–groundwater interface. The present paper focuses on the distribution of lateral hyporheic exchange fluxes and their associated travel times at the Steinlach Test Site. Water level dynamics in various piezometers correspond to the different domains of hydraulic conductivity in the shallow aquifer and confirms hyporheic exchange of infiltrated stream water across the test site. Hydrochemical compositions as well as increased damping of continuous time series of electrical conductivity (EC) and temperature at the respective piezometers confirmed the inferred distribution of hyporheic flowpaths. Mean travel times ranging from 0.5 days close to the stream to more than 8 days in the upstream part of the test site could be estimated from deconvolution of EC and δ 18 O–H 2 O data. The travel times agree well with the presumed flowpaths. Mg/Ca ratios as well as model fits to the EC and δ 18 O data indicate the presence of an additional water component in the western part of the test site which most likely consists of hillslope water or groundwater. Based on the mean travel times, the total lateral hyporheic exchange flux at the site was estimated to be of the order of 1–2 L/s.
    Keywords: Hyporheic zone ; Stream–groundwater interaction ; Travel time distribution ; Deconvolution ; Monitoring
    ISSN: 1866-6280
    E-ISSN: 1866-6299
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Science of the Total Environment, 10 March 2019, Vol.655, pp.1062-1070
    Description: The estimation of gas-exchange rates between streams and the atmosphere is of great importance for the fate of volatile compounds in rivers. For dissolved oxygen, this exchange process is called reaeration, and its accurate and precise estimation is essential for the quantification of metabolic rates. A common method for the determination of gas-exchange rates is through artificial gas-tracer tests with a proxy gas. We present the implementation of a portable gas-equilibrium membrane inlet mass spectrometer (GE-MIMS) to record concentrations of krypton and propane injected as tracer compound in the context of a gas-tracer test. The field-compatible GE-MIMS uses signals of atmospheric measurements for concentration standardization, and allows recording the dissolved-gas concentrations at a high temporal resolution, leading to overall low measurement uncertainty. Furthermore, the approach avoids loss of gas during the steps of sampling, transport, storage, and analysis required for gas measurements. We compare obtained gas-exchange rate coefficients, reaeration and derived metabolic rates from the measurements to results obtained from head-space sampling of propane followed by laboratory analysis, and find much lower uncertainties with the method.
    Keywords: Krypton ; Gas Tracer ; Gas-Equilibrium Membrane-Inlet Mass Spectrometry ; Reaeration ; Stream Metabolism ; In-Situ Recording of Dissolved Gases ; Environmental Sciences ; Biology ; Public Health
    ISSN: 0048-9697
    E-ISSN: 1879-1026
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Earth Sciences, 2013, Vol.69(2), pp.317-333
    Description: Sustainable water quality management requires a profound understanding of water fluxes (precipitation, run-off, recharge, etc.) and solute turnover such as retention, reaction, transformation, etc. at the catchment or landscape scale. The Water and Earth System Science competence cluster (WESS, http://www.wess.info/ ) aims at a holistic analysis of the water cycle coupled to reactive solute transport, including soil–plant–atmosphere and groundwater–surface water interactions. To facilitate exploring the impact of land-use and climate changes on water cycling and water quality, special emphasis is placed on feedbacks between the atmosphere, the land surface, and the subsurface. A major challenge lies in bridging the scales in monitoring and modeling of surface/subsurface versus atmospheric processes. The field work follows the approach of contrasting catchments, i.e. neighboring watersheds with different land use or similar watersheds with different climate. This paper introduces the featured catchments and explains methodologies of WESS by selected examples.
    Keywords: Water and solute fluxes ; Water quality ; Catchments ; Land-surface atmosphere exchange ; Processes and feedbacks ; Modeling ; Monitoring
    ISSN: 1866-6280
    E-ISSN: 1866-6299
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