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TitleMulti-order hydrologic position: a high-resolution dataset for the conterminous United States
DownloadDownload (whole publication)
LicencePlease note the adoption of the Open Government Licence - Canada supersedes any previous licences.
AuthorBelitz, K; Moore, R; Arnold, T; Sharp, J; Starn, J J
SourceRegional-Scale Groundwater Geoscience in Southern Ontario: An Ontario Geological Survey, Geological Survey of Canada, and Conservation Ontario Geoscientists Open House; by Russell, H A JORCID logo; Ford, D; Holysh, S; Priebe, E H; Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 8528, 2019 p. 2, Open Access logo Open Access
Alt SeriesOntario Geological Survey, Open File Report 6349
PublisherNatural Resources Canada
PublisherGovernment of Ontario
MeetingRegional-Scale Groundwater Geoscience in Southern Ontario: Open House; Guelph; CA; February 27-28, 2019
Documentopen file
Mediaon-line; digital
RelatedThis publication is contained in Regional-Scale Groundwater Geoscience in Southern Ontario: An Ontario Geological Survey, Geological Survey of Canada, and Conservation Ontario Geoscientists Open House
File formatpdf
AreaUnited States of America
Lat/Long WENS-125.0000 -67.0000 49.0000 24.0000
Subjectshydrogeology; hydrologic environment; hydrologic properties; surface waters; rivers; streams; watersheds; models; Databases
Released2019 02 08
AbstractThe location of a point within a stream network can be an important measure in hydrology. Hydrologic position (HP) is defined here by two metrics: lateral position (LP) and distance from stream to divide (DSD). LP is the relative position of a point between the stream and its watershed divide. DSD for a point is the sum of the shortest distance to the stream (DS) and the shortest distance to the divide. LP is the quotient of DS divided by DSD. In addition, HP is specified relative to a stream network of a given order, and hence each point is assigned multiple values of HP. The highest stream order in the conterminous U.S. is ten (Mississippi River below Missouri River).
Hydrologic order "n" is defined here as the network of streams of order n and higher. For example, hydrologic order 1 is the network of all streams, and hydrologic order 2 consists only of streams of order 2 and higher. For a given hydrologic order, watershed divides are defined by Thiessen polygons, rather than by topographic divides. A Thiessen watershed consists of all points that are closer to a given stream than to any other stream. Thiessen watershed divides can change from one hydrologic order to the next. The term multi-order hydrologic position (MOHP) is used to acknowledge that HP for a point is defined for each of the different hydrologic orders. MOHP was developed for nine hydrologic orders.
MOHP for the conterminous U.S. was developed using the National Hydrography Dataset Version 2 (NHDPlusV2). The NHDplusV2 represents streams and waterbodies as flowlines, and includes an attribute equivalent to stream order. In addition, it was necessary to identify streams in Canada and Mexico that are close enough to the U.S. to influence computations. Values of MOHP were identified using a raster approach with a 30-meter cell size. The file sizes for the resulting geodatabases - LP and DSD for 9 hydrologic orders for about 8.7 billion cells - were large. Consequently, an additional dataset was developed for 90-m cells by subsampling the 30-m datasets.
Two case studies, using random forest models, are presented that demonstrate the utility of MOHP as predictor variables: geomorphic province in California's Central Valley, and depth to the water table for the Fox-Wolf-Peshtigo drainages in Wisconsin.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
Volume of abstracts for Ontario Geological Survey and Geological Survey of Canada groundwater geoscience Open house with Conservation Ontario.

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