Investigation of karstic hydrological processes of Niangziguan Springs (North China) using wavelet analysis

Yonghong Hao, Guoliang Liu, Huamin Li, Zhongtang Li, Jiaojuan Zhao, Tian Chyi J. Yeh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Niangziguan Spring complex is the largest karst spring in North China. We investigate the karst hydrological processes by using Morlet wavelet transform analysis and cross wavelet analysis based on monthly precipitation from 1958 to 2010 and spring discharge from 1958 to 2009. From Morlet wavelet transform coefficients of precipitation and the spring discharge in Niangziguan Springs Basin, we find that the precipitation and discharge are characterized by the multi-scale features in the time domain, and the energy distribution of the signal is highly irregular across scales. Although precipitation eventually becomes spring discharge by infiltrating and propagating through karst formations, the signals are attenuated. The results also show that the precipitation of Niangziguan Springs Basin has the main periodic components of 1-, 5-, 12-, and 17-year periods with alternating wet-drought cycle. Similarly, the spring discharge of Niangziguan Springs has the main components of 17-year periods, but the 1-, 5-, and 12-year periodicity of precipitation are not reflected in spring discharge, which is filtered by the aquifers. The results of cross wavelet analysis reveal that the precipitation and spring discharge share the common periodicity of 17years. This means that those signals with high energy and long timescales can penetrate through the aquifer and be reflected in spring discharge, whereas other signals are filtered and modified.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3062-3069
Number of pages8
JournalHydrological Processes
Issue number20
StatePublished - Sep 30 2012


  • Groundwater
  • Karst aquifer
  • Niangziguan Springs
  • Wavelet analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology


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