MSc Hydrology: fieldwork trip and flooding event in Luxembourg

20 June 2016

The first fieldwork trip of the MSc Hydrology students ended. Nine students went to Diekirch, Luxemburg to learn more and undertake hydrological experiments. Each group of three students was assigned to explain the hydrological processes taking place in a small catchment. During the trip the camp was flooded. Read below the story written by the students themselves.

"With a group of nine students we went to Diekirch, Luxemburg to do fieldwork. Each group of three students was assigned to explain the hydrological processes taking place in a small catchment. Every group and each student was assigned its own topic: physical hydrology, ecohydrology or hydrochemistry. The selected catchments were different from one another so each group had its own interesting findings. Upon arrival we all had some great ideas in mind of how the hydrological processes “should be” working in the catchments, but soon enough we realized that in practice things turned out pretty different. We often faced difficulties measuring the things we first had in mind. Fortunately, the staff brought a lot of equipment and instruments so we were able to come up with creative ideas to implement our measurements. In each catchment there was a weir so we were able to install a diver data logger next to it. Furthermore, we installed a small weather station, sapflow, stemflow and soil moisture probes, measured discharge with different methods, took water sample to analyze them in our own mobile lab, and made plots to describe the vegetation.

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Tensiometers, piezometers and soil moisture probe. Photo: Sija Stofberg

One of the most interesting things about the fieldwork was the ability to use your own creativity and come up with a solution to do your measurements. Additionally, because we were with a small group we get to know each other fast. We exchanged lots of ideas and information, and had above all a lot of fun during our stay!

One of the memorable things that happened during the fieldwork was the flooding of the accommodation part of the campsite.. We measured around 80 mm of rainfall on a single day! Next day we took the liberty to enjoy a swim in the fields of the camping.

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Flooded campsite, Luxembourg. Photo: Joris Stuurop

On behalf of the Msc Hydrology students group we want to thank the staff and the weather gods for this memorable fieldwork trip!"

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Discharge measurements. Photo: Sija Stofberg

Written by: Jeroen Bosschaart and Timothy Tiggeloven

Published by  IBED Water