A novel suspended-sediment sampling method: Depth-Integrated Grab (DIG)

Applied Sciences
By: , and 



Measuring suspended sediment in fluvial systems is critical to understanding and managing water resources. Sampling suspended sediment has been the primary means of understanding fluvial suspended sediment. Specialized samplers, sampling methods, and laboratory methods developed by select U.S. Federal Agencies are more representative of river and stream conditions than commonly used grab sampling and total suspended solids (TSS) laboratory methods but are not widely used because they are expensive, time consuming, and not required as part of water quality standards in the United States. A new suspended-sediment sampling method called a depth-integrated grab (DIG) was developed by combining certain elements from both grab and depth-integrating sampling methods and suspended-sediment concentration (SSC) laboratory methods. The goal of the DIG method was to provide more accurate results than Grab-TSS while being easier and cheaper to sample than specialized samplers and methods. Approximately 50 paired comparison samples were collected at 9 sites in Minnesota from 2018 through 2019. Results showed no significant difference between the DIG and specialized sampling methods and a significant difference between both methods and the Grab-TSS method. The DIG-SSC provided an improved alternative to the Grab-TSS method, but additional research and testing is important to evaluate if this method is appropriate in different conditions than were observed in this study.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title A novel suspended-sediment sampling method: Depth-Integrated Grab (DIG)
Series title Applied Sciences
DOI 10.3390/app13137844
Volume 13
Issue 13
Year Published 2023
Language English
Publisher MDPI
Contributing office(s) Minnesota Water Science Center, Upper Midwest Water Science Center
Description 7844, 16 p.
Country United States
State Minnesota
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