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Can the models keep up with the data? Possibilities of soil and soil surface assessment techniques in the context of process based soil erosion models – A Review
Soil  (IF5.841),  Pub Date : 2021-08-20, DOI: 10.5194/soil-2021-85
Lea Epple, Andreas Kaiser, Marcus Schindewolf, Anette Eltner

Abstract. Climate change, accompanied by intensified extreme weather events, results in changes in intensity, frequency and magnitude of soil erosion. These unclear future developments make adaption and improvement of soil erosion modelling approaches all the more important. Hypothesizing that models cannot keep up with the data, this review gives an overview of 44 process based soil erosion models, their strengths and weaknesses and discusses their potential for further development with respect to new and improved soil and soil erosion assessment techniques. We found valuable tools in areas, as remote sensing, tracing or machine learning, to gain temporal and spatial distributed high resolution parameterization and process descriptions which could lead to a more holistic modelling approach. Most process based models are so far not capable to implement cross-scale erosional processes or profit from the available resolution on a temporal and spatial scale. We conclude that models need further development regarding their process understanding, adaptability in respect to scale as well as their parameterization and calibration. The challenge is the development of models which are able to simulate soil erosion processes as close to reality as possible, as user-friendly as possible and as complex as it needs to be.