Application of catchment scale sediment delivery model INCA-Sed to four small study catchments in Finland

K. Rankinen*, M. Thouvenot-Korppoo, A. Lazar, D. S L Lawrence, D. Butterfield, N. Veijalainen, I. Huttunen, A. Lepistö

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


The novel catchment scale erosion and sediment delivery model INCA-Sed was applied to four small study catchments in Finland. Three of these, the Mustajoki, Haarajoki and Luhdanjoki, are headwater catchments located in central Finland. The associated rivers have differing morphological characteristics varying from a ditch to a small river. Soil textures in the area are derived from moraine deposits and are largely sand and gravel. The Mustajoki and Haarajoki catchments are forested and only 10% of the area is under cultivation. In the Luhdanjoki catchment agricultural fields cover 40% of the area. The fourth study site, the Savijoki catchment, represents an intensively cultivated area in south-western Finland. Cultivated fields cover 40% of the catchment area, and they are located on clay soils along the river. The INCA-Sed model was able to capture both the correct magnitude and seasonal behaviour of suspended sediment concentrations in the rivers, as well as the correct magnitude of the sediment load derived from different land use classes. Small differences in river morphology and soil textures between the catchments have a significant influence on suspended sediment concentration in the rivers. Correct timing of suspended sediment concentration peaks is not, however, captured by the INCA-Sed model, which may be due to the stochastic nature of erosion and delivery processes at the catchment scale which are not taken into account in the parameter values used in the modelling. Parameter values were estimated from previous researches based on average process loads. The INCA-Sed model was, however, generally found to be a suitable tool for evaluating effects of land use change on erosion and sediment delivery in Finland as it correctly reproduces spatial and seasonal variations in sediment delivery, in addition to annual averages with spatial and temporal variations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-75
Number of pages12
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Catchment scale modelling
  • Dynamic modelling
  • Erosion
  • Sediment delivery

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