# The spatial variability of water and solute transport properties in unsaturated soil: I. Analysis of property variation and spatial structure with statistical models

#### Authors

William A. JuryDavid Russo

Garrison Sposito

Hesham Elabd

#### Authors Affiliations

William A. Jury was Professor of Soil Science and Soil Physicist, Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside; David Russo was Visiting Scientist in the Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside, from 1984 to 1986. He has since returned to his position as Soil Physicist at the Volcani Center, Agricultural Research Organization, Bet-Dagan, Israel; Garrison Sposito was Professor of Soil Science and Soil Chemist, Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside; Hesham Elabd was former Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside, is now Postdoctoral Researcher at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces.#### Publication Information

Hilgardia 55(4):1-32. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v55n04p056. July 1987.

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#### Abstract

This review presents and examines relevant information from existing spatial variability
studies of soil water and solute transport properties. Although most of the information
available allowed only a conventional statistical analysis (mean and variance) of
the pertinent properties, the field studies of (Nielsen, Biggar, and Erh (1973)) and (Russo and Bresler (1981)) were also suitable for spatial structure analysis. Detailed structural analysis of
the saturated hydraulic conductivity (*K _{s}*) of these two fields demonstrated how this type of analysis may reveal field characteristics
that are not apparent from conventional statistical analysis.

Using the Akaike Information Criterion for model discrimination, the three-dimensional
spatial distributions of ln*K _{s}* of both fields were shown to be described best by a spherical covariance function
and a linear drift function. The Hamra field of (Russo and Bresler (1981)) had a much larger deterministic drift component and a smaller stochastic component
than the Panoche field of (Nielsen, Biggar, and Erh (1973)). The stochastic component of ln

*K*in the Bet-Dagan field possessed a large nugget variance (40 percent of total) and was characterized by an integral scale of

_{s}*J*= 14.5 m, as compared with

*J*= 8.1 m and a small nugget variance (13 percent of total) in the Panoche field.

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