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Revised Slope Steepness Factor for the Universal Soil Loss Equation

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Transactions of the ASAE. 30 (5): 1387-1396. (doi: 10.13031/2013.30576) @1987
Authors:   D. K. McCool, L. C. Brown, G. R. Foster, C. K. Mutchler, L. D. Meyer

ABSTRACT Areanalysis of historical and recent data from both natural and simulated rainfall soil erosion plots has resulted in new slope steepness relationships for the Universal Soil Loss Equation. For long slopes on which both interrill and rill erosion occur, the relationships consist of two linear segments with a breakpoint at 9% slope. These relationships predict less erosion than current relationships on slopes steeper than 9% and slopes flatter than about 1%. A separate equation is proposed for the slope effect on short slopes where only interrill erosion is present. For conditions where surface flow over thaw-weakened soil dominates the erosion process, two relationships with a breakpoint at 9% slope are presented.

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