Tropical Water Cycle & Forest Hydrology


Tropical rainforests, such as those in Southeast Asia, are key hydrological environments. They impact on the climate at local and regional scales, they sometimes have distinct runoff pathways, and certainly have particular sensitivities to disturbance by commercial forestry activities. The complexity and harshness of the environment means that specialist field and modelling technologies are required to study tropical forest hydrology. Our collaborative work seeks to add to knowledge of climate-hydrology interactions in the humid tropics, tropical runoff pathways and the ways that tropical forestry impacts on water, nutrient and sediment systems. We use tracer and high-frequency sampling in the field, and a range of data-based and conceptual modelling techniques in the laboratory.

Topic Summaries

Madai Falls, Sabah, Malaysian Borneo

Research projects (ongoing):

RamuSED: Quantifying sensitivity of suspended sediment dynamics to environmental change within Papua New Guinea. Duration: 3/2009 - 2/2010.

Canopy and subsurface moisture controls on runoff response and evapotranspiration. Component project of OP3 Consortial Project. Duration: 10/2007 - 9/2010. Funder: NERC, UK

Long-term sediment recovery from selective tropical forestry. Duration: 10/2007 - 9/2010. Funder: MHE, Malaysia

Danum Valley Field Centre, Sabah, Malaysia

Royal Society Rain Forest Research Programme

Delineation of stream protection zones using soil moisture mapping. Duration: 10/2006 - 9/2009. Funder: CEH, UK

Demonstration Test Catchments: The River Eden Consortium. Duration: 2010 - 2014. Funder: Defra, UK

PhD/MPhil projects (ongoing):

Kretzschmar, A. 2011-. Rainfall inversion. UK PhD studentship.

Suhaimi, J. 2008-2011. Moisture control on evapotranspiration and streamfow generation in tropical forest. NERC PhD studentship.

PhD/MPhil projects (completed):

Abu Bakar, S.N. 2011. Longer-term sediment recovery within a managed tropical rainforest catchment. Unpublished PhD thesis (submitted), Lancaster University, UK. (Malaysian Government studentship).

Ockenden, M.C. 2010. Identification of catchment runoff processes as a basis for defining water quality protection zones. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (CEH (NERC) PhD studentship).

Solera García, M.A. 2009. Analysis of hydro-climatic interactions in SE Asia using data-based modelling . Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (NCAS (NERC) PhD studentship).

Tangki, H. 2008. Biomass variation across selectively logged forest in Borneo and its prediction by Landsat TM data. Unpublished MPhil thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (Royal Society of London funded).

Ampadu, B. 2007. Simulating rainfall and riverflow dynamics in Ghana. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (Ghanaian Government studentship).

Fowell, M. 2006. Methodology for evaluation of GCMs at regional scales: method development and application to SE Asian hydrological variables. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (NERC studentship).

Vongtanaboon, S. 2004. Parsimonious modelling the rainfall-runoff behaviour of large catchments in Thailand. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (Royal Thai Government studentship).

Katimon, A. 2002. Hydrologic characteristics and time series modelling of a drained peat catchment in Johor, Malaysia. Unpublished PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Malaysia. (Malaysian Government studentship)

Bidin, K. 2001. Spatio-temporal variability in rainfall and wet-canopy evaporation within a small catchment recovering from selective tropical forestry.Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (Malaysian Government studentship)

Lancaster, J.W. 1999. Multi-scale estimation of effective permeability within the Greenholes Beck catchment. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (NERC studentship)

Tahir, W.Z. 1997. Evaluation of combined dielectric and conductivity tracing of subsurface contaminant migration. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (Malaysian Government studentship)

Sherlock, M.D. 1997. Plot scale hydrometric and tracer characterisation of soil water flow in two tropical forest catchments in Southeast Asia. Unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University, UK. (NERC studentship)


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Copyright © Dr. Nick A Chappell, Lancaster Univsersity 2011. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.