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# Determining the sources of fine-grained sediment using the Sediment Source Assessment Tool (Sed_SAT)
A sound understanding of sources contributing to instream sediment flux in a watershed is important when developing total maximum daily load (TMDL) management strategies designed to reduce suspended sediment in streams. Sediment fingerprinting and sediment budget approaches are two techniques, that when used jointly, can qualify and quantify the major sources of sediment in a given watershed. The sediment fingerprinting approach uses trace element concentrations from samples in known potential source areas to determine a clear signature of each potential source. A mixing model is then used to determine the relative source contribution to the target suspended sediment samples.
The computational steps required to apportion sediment for each target sample are quite involved and time intensive, a problem the Sediment Source Assessment Tool (Sed_SAT) addresses. Sed_SAT is a user-friendly statistical model that guides the user through the necessary steps in order to quantify the relative contributions of sediment sources in a given watershed. The model is written using the statistical software R and utilizes Microsoft Access® as a user interface but requires no prior knowledge of R or Microsoft Access® to successfully run the model successfully. Sed_SAT identifies outliers, corrects for differences in size and organic content in the source samples relative to the target samples, evaluates the conservative behavior of tracers used in fingerprinting by applying a “Bracket Test,” identifies tracers with the highest discriminatory power, and provides robust error analysis through a Monte Carlo simulation following the mixing model. Quantifying sediment source contributions using the sediment fingerprinting approach provides local, state, and federal land management agencies with important information needed to implement effective strategies to reduce sediment. Sed_SAT is designed to assist these agencies in applying the sediment fingerprinting approach to quantify sediment sources in the sediment TMDL framework.
Sed_SAT was developed in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Regions 3 and 5 and is a companion to the EPA Manual, “A Manual to Identify Sediment Sources” (Gellis, Fitzpatrick, and others, 2016). Reading the EPA manual before engaging in a sediment source study using Sed_SAT is strongly recommended. Chapter 6 of the manual includes guidance on how to collect, prepare, and analyze source and target sediment samples for sediment source identification using the sediment fingerprinting method.
### Sed_SAT Instruction Manual
The [instruction manual]( was designed to be an interactive document that can be accessed and searched from within the Sed_SAT program. All details on the procedures completed at each step are found in the body of the manual. Screenshots and details on navigating each screen are located in the appendixes. Important options and elements of each screen are highlighted with colored boxes that correspond to the bullets below the screenshot.
The InstructionManual.pdf file is generated by InstructionManual.docm a macro enabled Microsoft Word® document that can be accessed from every screen in the program. Clicking the Instruction Manual hyperlink below the Program MAP icon (Figure 6) opens the InstructionManual.pdf file to the section of the manual that gives background on the current step, and clicking the Screen Help hyperlink opens the manual to the appendix that gives details on navigating the current screen. The InstructionManual.pdf file can only be accessed from within the program if the path to AcroRd32.exe has been set by the user in the first step of the program setup on the Set PATH screen (see Set PATH) and the content has been enabled in the InstructionManual.docm file (see Enable content.)
#### Citation for Sed_SAT instruction Manual
Gorman Sanisaca, L., Gellis, Allen, and Lorenz, David, 2017, Determining the sources of fine-grained sediment using the Sediment Source Assessment Tool (Sed_SAT): U.S. Geological Survey report series Open File Report 2017-1062
### Minimum System Requirements
1) Microsoft Windows® 7 or above
2) Microsoft Office® 2007-2013 (32bit)
i) Microsoft Access®
ii) Microsoft Word®
iii) Microsoft Excel®
3) Adobe Acrobat Reader® (AcroRd32.exe)
The program can be run on either a 32-bit or 64-bit operating system. The program has not been tested using Parallels Desktop® for Mac®.
### Getting Started
When starting Sed_SAT for the first time, the user will need to follow the Enable content instructions and the Activating Microsoft Access Visual Basic References instructions if an error were to occur when enabling content. This is a one-time process for each initiation of the model from a given location on the user’s system.
#### Enable content
Prior to running the model, you must enable content in the files that contain Visual Basic for Applications® code and/or macros. The following files contain macros:
 Instruction Manual.docm (may need to Enable Editing first)
 Blank.accdb
 Sed_SAT.accdb
Failing to complete this step will result in program failure. Files containing Visual Basic for Applications® code must be listed as “trusted documents” before any of the code can run. This adds protection for the user by preventing the code from running upon opening a document before the user decides to trust the document. For more information on the enable content warning see Enable Content Warning (Microsoft®, 2007). To list documents as “trusted documents” complete the following steps:
1. Enable content in the SedimentFingerprinting_R\Manual\InstructionManual.docm file
a. If open, close the InstructionManual.pdf file (it will be updated by the InstructionManual.docm file
b. Open the SedimentFingerprinting_R\Manual\InstructionManual.docm file
c. Click “Enable Content” in the yellow ribbon on the top of the widow (the file will close itself)
2. Enable content in the Blank.accdb file (Figure 1)
a. Start by opening the Blank.accdb file. This file contains no information. It acts only as a springboard to send the user back to the core file Sed_SAT.accdb
b. Close the Pop-up window by clicking the “X” in the top right corner
c. Click “Enable Content” in the yellow ribbon on the top of the widow (if an error
occurs after enabling content this is due to a missing Visual Basic for Applications® reference, see Activating Microsoft Access Visual Basic References to add required Visual Basic for Applications® references)
d. Click “Stop” on the bottom of the pop-up (this will close the Blank.accdb file)
<img src="SedimentFingerprinting_R/readMeImages/enableContent.jpg" alt="Sed_Sat" height="550px" align="center" />
### Acknowledgments
We would like to acknowledge funding from the EPA Regional Methods Study and the USGS Chesapeake Bay Program for producing the Sed_SAT program. We also want to thank Anna Baker and Leah Kammel, USGS for testing earlier versions of the program as well as Shannon Jackson and Matthew Cashman,USGS for testing later versions. For their edits and suggestions, we would like to thank Tanja Williamson, Durga Ghosh, and Karen Ryberg, USGS.
### Code of Conduct
We want to encourage a warm, welcoming, and safe environment for contributing to this project. See the [code of conduct]( for more information.
### Disclaimer
This software has been approved for release by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Although the software has been subjected to rigorous review, the USGS reserves the right to update the software as needed pursuant to further analysis and review. No warranty, expressed or implied, is made by the USGS or the U.S. Government as to the functionality of the software and related material nor shall the fact of release constitute any such warranty. Furthermore, the software is released on condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from its authorized or unauthorized use.
Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.
### License
See the license agreement here: <>.
The R-3.3.0 libraries and code are distributed in the Sed_SAT software release in compliance with the licensing agreements in the "MIT License" [<>]. The R libraries contained in the R-3.3.0 version distributed with Sed_SAT have not been modified by the USGS and include the most current versions of the R libraries available for download prior to October 6, 2016.
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