Application of a water quality model in the white cart water catchment, Glasgow, UK

S. Liu, P. Tucker, M. Mansell, A. Hursthouse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Water quality models of urban systems have previously focused on point source (sewerage system) inputs. Little attention has been given to diffuse inputs and research into diffuse pollution has been largely confined to agriculture sources. This paper reports on new research that is aimed at integrating diffuse inputs into an urban water quality model. An integrated model is introduced that is made up of four modules: hydrology, contaminant point sources, nutrient cycling and leaching. The hydrology module, T & T consists of a TOPMODEL (a TOPography-based hydrological MODEL), which simulates runoff from pervious areas and a two-tank model, which simulates runoff from impervious urban areas. Linked into the two-tank model, the contaminant point source module simulates the overflow from the sewerage system in heavy rain. The widely known SOILN (SOIL Nitrate model) is the basis of nitrogen cycle module. Finally, the leaching module consists of two functions: the production function and the transfer function. The production function is based on SLIM (Solute Leaching Intermediate Model) while the transfer function is based on the ‘flushing hypothesis’ which postulates a relationship between contaminant concentrations in the receiving water course and the extent to which the catchment is saturated. This paper outlines the modelling methodology and the model structures that have been developed. An application of this model in the White Cart catchment (Glasgow) is also included
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-62
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Geochemistry and Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Nitrogen dynamics
  • Soil
  • Runoff
  • Carbon
  • River
  • Conceptual hydrology model
  • Diffuse pollution
  • Nitrate transport
  • Point pollution
  • Urban water quality


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