Mapping Subsurface Drainage Systems using Remote Sensing and GIS

William J. Northcott, Ashok K. Verma, Richard A. Cooke

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

Subsurface drainage is a widely used water management practice in many areas of the Midwest. In flat, poorly drained soils, growers must rely on subsurface drainage as a practical and economical solution to remove excess water from cropland. Subsurface drainage systems have been installed for over 100 years, many of which are still operational. Traditional methods for locating tile systems are time consuming and labor intensive. This paper outlines the development of a method for locating and delineating existing tile systems using remote sensing and GIS technologies. Tiles are located using color infrared aerial photographs. Because the soil directly above a tile line dries faster than the surrounding soil, the reflectivity of the drier soil is often clearly seen in the infrared spectrum. Tile lines are delineated within a GIS framework by overlaying aerial imagery with soils and elevation maps. To illustrate this method, tile systems are delineated from a 640-acre section of tile drained cropland and then expanded to a 17,500-acre tile drained watershed in East Central Illinois.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages2625-2634
Number of pages10
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000
Externally publishedYes
Event2000 ASAE Annual International Meeting, Technical Papers: Engineering Solutions for a New Century - Milwaukee, WI., United States
Duration: Jul 9 2000Jul 12 2000

Other

Other2000 ASAE Annual International Meeting, Technical Papers: Engineering Solutions for a New Century
CountryUnited States
CityMilwaukee, WI.
Period7/9/007/12/00

Keywords

  • Surbsurface drainage
  • Tile mapping
  • Watershed modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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  • Cite this

    Northcott, W. J., Verma, A. K., & Cooke, R. A. (2000). Mapping Subsurface Drainage Systems using Remote Sensing and GIS. 2625-2634. Paper presented at 2000 ASAE Annual International Meeting, Technical Papers: Engineering Solutions for a New Century, Milwaukee, WI., United States.