Title: Slope Length and Steepness factor (LS-factor)
Description: The LS-calculation was performed using the original equation proposed by Desmet and Govers (1996) and implemented using the System for Automated Geoscientific Analyses (SAGA), which incorporates a multiple flow algorithm and contributes to a precise estimation of flow accumulation.
Spatial coverage: European Union (28 Countries)
Pixel size: 25m and 100m
Measurement Unit: Dimensionless
Projection: ETRS89 Lambert Azimuthal Equal Area
LS-factor in Europe
The Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) model is the most frequently used model for soil erosion risk estimation. Among the six input layers, the combined slope length and slope angle (LS-factor) has the greatest influence on soil loss at the European scale. The S-factor measures the effect of slope steepness, and the L-factor defines the impact of slope length. The combined LS-factor describes the effect of topography on soil erosion. The European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC) developed a new pan-European high-resolution soil erosion assessment to achieve a better understanding of the spatial and temporal patterns of soil erosion in Europe. The LS-calculation was performed using the original equation proposed by Desmet and Govers (1996) and implemented using the System for Automated Geoscientific Analyses (SAGA), which incorporates a multiple flow algorithm and contributes to a precise estimation of flow accumulation. The LS-factor dataset was calculated using a high-resolution (25 m) Digital Elevation Model (DEM) for the whole European Union, resulting in an improved delineation of areas at risk of soil erosion as compared to lower-resolution datasets. This combined approach of using GIS software tools with high-resolution DEMs has been successfully applied in regional assessments in the past, and is now being applied for first time at the European scale.
The LS-factor dataset is in Raster format. The public user can download 2 different resolution datasets :
- 100m resolution for the Whole Europe
- 25m resolution per country.
To get access to the data, please compile the request form; instructions will then follow how to download the datasets. The References to the source are always necessary!
More information about the Topographic factor: LS-factor;
A complete description of the methodology and the application in Europe is described in the paper:
Panagos, P., Borrelli, P., Meusburger, K. (2015) A New European Slope Length and Steepness Factor (LS-Factor) for Modeling Soil Erosion by Water. Geosciences, 5: 117-126.