27370 - Hydraulics of Agroforestry Systems

Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Docente: Stevo Lavrnic
  • Credits: 6
  • SSD: AGR/08
  • Language: Italian
  • Teaching Mode: Blended Learning
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Planning and management of agro-territorial, forest and landscape (cod. 8532)

    Also valid for Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Sciences and Management of Nature (cod. 9257)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, the student is able to tackle the problems connected to a degradation, through the control of soil erosion and proper water management. In particular, the student will able to: - evaluate the causes, factors and dynamics of water and wind erosion and the risk of desertification; - know the methods for measurement and the models for the erosion estimation; - evaluate the surface and groundwater cycle, - analyse extreme events (flow rates and precipitations), - know the methods and models for estimation of the river flow, - know and apply the techniques of Soil and Water Bioengineering for erosion control of the slopes and riverbeds.

Course contents

  • Soil erosion. Exogenous factors. Erosive action of precipitation. Forms, factors and causes of erosion. Mass movements: causes and classification. Models for the estimation of soil erosion at the basin scale, Universal Soil Loss Equation USLE - USDA. Wind erosion.
  • Erosive action of the flood events. Forms of river erosion and sedimentation.
  • River solid flow, methods of measurement and estimation. Elements of river geomorphology and morphometry. Main river forms.
  • Elements of river hydraulics. Liquid and solid river flow, definitions.
  • River basin and hydrological balance. Extreme events, return time, time of concentration, runoff coefficient. Flow estimation methods.
  • Elements of basin hydrology. Precipitation effects on drainage basin.
  • Statistical study of precipitations and flow rates. Important events and return time. Climatic possibility curves, Gumbel method.
  • Elements of groundwater hydrology. Properties of rocks in the presence of water. Groundwater cycle. Movements and structure of the groundwater basins.
  • Soil and Water Bioengineering in different basins. Interventions for soil defense and water regulation. Wind erosion control techniques.


It is not necessary to purchase specific materials. Teaching material is provided during lessons, available on the course platform.

Further reading:

V. Ferro; “La sistemazione dei bacini idrografici”; McGraw-Hill; Milano; 2002.


Teaching methods

The course is divided into lectures and problem solving. Field visits are also planned.

The teaching of Soil Erosion and Bio-Engineering Installations consists of 4 ECTS and it is the same as the one of Hydraulic Agro-Forestry. However, the course programme excludes two topics that will be indicated by the teacher.

The teaching adheres to the UNIBO's innovative experimental teaching project through the application of a hybrid format (blended), where the methodological integration between the in-presence and distance teaching comprises 10% of the total duration of the course.

Assessment methods

Hydraulic Agro-Forestry is a module of the integrated course "Agro-Forestry Hydraulic Systems", together with the course of "Agricultural Soil Mechanics". Consequently, the final mark will be the average value of the two modules.

The final assessment of the modulo Hydraulic Agro-Forestry will be a combination of an oral assessment and a technical report.

Since this is an integrated course, the recording teacher is Prof. Michele Mattetti.

Soil Erosion and Bio-Engineering Installations - the final exam will be an oral one.

Teaching tools

Slides, blackboard, computer, didactic material.

Office hours

See the website of Stevo Lavrnic