Unit 1-Water‎ > ‎Run off experiment‎ > ‎

Google Earth Exercise

This lesson was developed by Dr. Cynthia Annett


Floods happen when there is too much water running off the land and into a river. Water that runs off the land during heavy rainstorms or when snow melts has to go somewhere-- and in Kansas it flows downhill into the nearest river.

1. Use the Google Earth kmz file called "Where does the water go?" in the attachment section at the bottom of this page to find out where run-off from the KCKCC campus ends up.

Add a marker icon to show where the Kansas River joins the Missouri River, add another marker icon to show where the Missouri River joins the Mississippi River, and add a third marker icon to show where the Mississippi River enters the Gulf of Mexico. Place your markers in the "Where does the water go?" folder and save it to your computer desktop.

If you need help with Google Earth look at the instructions for the Google Earth Introduction


Scientific Calculator

The gadget spec URL could not be found


2. Now calculate how much water will run-off the roof-tops of our buildings and off of the grassy areas on campus.


Use the Google Earth kmz file called "KCKCC run-off calculations." Found below in the attachment section of this page.

There is an example of the calculations below.











Answer Form






How much water will run off the parking lot during a rainstorm?

If you need to review how to save and open files, add markers, paths and polygons, and other Google Earth basics go to the Tech lesson from Week 1.

Download the Google Earth kmz file called "Run-off Example" from the attachment section called at the bottom of this page. Save it to your computer desktop. Open the file in your Google Earth.

Go to the Run-off Example folder in your Google Earth file to find the parking lot used in these calculations. This will give you an idea of how to do the Run-off Tech lesson.

You can use the slider to make the rectangles clear, that will let you see what is under the white rectangle.



Scientific Calculator

The gadget spec URL could not be found

a. Measure the sides of the Example parking lot

Length = 118 meters

Width = 19.5 meters

b. Calculate the area of the Example parking lot

Area = Length x Width =

118 meters x 19.5 meters = 2,301 square meters

2,30l m2 = 0.23 hectares




c. Find out how much runoff there is during a “standard” storm for a “standard” area:

 

We are told by the United States Geological Service (USGS) that when 10 cm of rain falls on 1 hectare of land, there will be a total of 1,028,000 liters of rainwater water falling on the 1 hectare of land.

Asphalt and concrete parking lots are impervious surfaces, meaning that the water cannot soak into it and the water runs off of it during a rainstorm.

d. Calculate how much runoff there is from your parking lot during a 10 cm rainstorm.

 

(0.23 hectare) x (1,028,000 liters/hectare) = 236,440 liters of water runs off this parking lot during a 10 cm rainstorm

e. Water runs off asphalt and concrete, but water soaks into dirt and grass. Only 0.06 times as much water runs off grass compared to a parking lot. If we had the same size area, this means that there would only be

 

(0.23 hectares) x (1,028,000 liters per hectare) x (0.06) = 14,186 liters

 

f. How much more water runs off the parking lot during a 10 cm rainstorm compared to a grassy lawn of the same size?

 

236,440 liters – 14,186 liters = 222,254 liters

 

This means that the parking lot has 222,254 liters more water running off during a 10 cm rainstorm than the grassy lawn. That is a lot more water flowing into the stream-- and when too much water flows into the river we get a flood.





The exercise below is suitable for Middle School students


If you need help with Google Earth look at the instructions for Week 1 Tech Stuff


Today we are going to talk about what happens to rain after it falls on the land. When there is a heavy rainstorm the land can't soak it all up, and when this happens some of the water runs off the land. Water that runs off the land during heavy rainstorms (or when snow melts) has to go somewhere, and in Kansas it flows downhill into the nearest river. If there is too much water running off the land, the river will flood.

1. Use the Google Earth kmz file called "KCK Schools" in the attachment section at the bottom of the page to find out where your school is.

a. Change the marker icon and make it really different. Open the dialog box and write a description of your school in the box.

b. How far is it from your school to the Missouri River?
Use the path tool in Google Earth to draw a line from your school to the Missouri River, then use click on "Measurement" in the dialog box to find out how far it is.
Write this in the marker icon box for your school (remember to say what the units are).

c. How far is it from your school to the Kansas River?
Use the path tool in Google Earth to draw a line from your school to the Kansas River, then click on "Measurement" in the dialog box to find out how far it is.
Write this in the marker icon box for your school (remember to say what the units are).

d. Save the marker icon for your school.

2. Use the Google Earth kmz file called "Where does the water go?" in the attachment section at the bottom of this page to find out where run-off from the KCKCC campus ends up.

a. Add a marker icon to show where the Kansas River joins the Missouri River.

b. Add another marker icon to show where the Missouri River joins the Mississippi River.

c. Add a third marker icon to show where the Mississippi River enters the Gulf of Mexico.
 
d. Place your markers in the "Where does the water go?" folder and save it.



ċ
KCKSchools.kmz
(1k)
Dr. Cynthia Annett,
Dec 5, 2011, 4:10 PM
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