"Cape Fear"-A hybrid hillslope plot for monitoring hydrological processes

Flavia Tauro, Andrea Petroselli, Aldo Fiori, Nunzio Romano, Maria Cristina Rulli, Maurizio Porfiri, Mario Palladino, Salvatore Grimaldi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Innovative experimental field designs and methods are instrumental for dissecting hydrological processes in hillslopes. However, experimental studies at the catchment scale are rarely affordable to most research groups, and laboratory flumes are oversimplified to reproduce natural phenomena. In this work, we present the innovative "hybrid" experimental plot of Cape Fear, which features controllable water fluxes and boundary conditions, but it is directly exposed to external atmospheric agents. We demonstrate the suitability of Cape Fear to study hydrological phenomena through a feasibility test, whereby the response of the plot to a natural storm is in line with the well-known hydrological response of natural hillslopes. Future studies will address the influence of the plot geometry parameters on rill formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number35
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2017


  • Cape fear
  • Experimental plot
  • Fluorescent particles
  • Hillslope processes
  • Rill formation
  • Runoff onset
  • Soil moisture
  • Tracers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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