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Water & Energy Cycles

Energy and moisture fluxes at land-atmosphere and vadose-saturated zone interfaces govern many atmospheric, hydrologic, and crop growth processes. The Soil-Vegetation-Atmosphere-Transfer (SVAT) models that predict these fluxes use biophysical parameterizations of land-surface processes. However good these models, their flux estimates diverge from reality over time due to accumulation of parameterization, forcing, and computational errors. A promising way to improve model skill is to periodically assimilate the satellite active and passive microwave observations that constrain SVAT estimates of water stored in soil and vegetation. We propose to relate error growth to observing interval for SVAT-based estimates of soil moisture in terrains having two land-cover types within the footprint of passive observations. We will synthesize the satellite active and passive microwave observations using actual field data, and synchronously and asynchronously assimilate these synthetic observations into an SVAT model using an ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF). The EnKF model will be composed of already developed SVAT, brightness, and backscatter modules that will be validated prior to soil moisture retrieval. We make three major contributions: (1) Assimilation of synchronous and asynchronous active and passive microwave field observations synthesized to have differing spatial scales, (2) Examination of the usefulness of supplementing synchronous observations, like those from the Soil Moisture Active/Passive mission, with asynchronous observations, like those from AMSR or SMOS, and (3) Compare soil moisture estimation in a heterogeneous terrain with field “truth”. The Universities of Florida and Michigan provide a unique multidisciplinary team to conduct this research. The research is proposed for the Suwannee river watershed (SRW) in northern Florida, with forest and a row-crop as the two terrains. The SRW is heavily gauged and contains a well-instrumented USDA Agricultural Research Station (ARS) watershed in the upper basin. Techniques developed during this research can be readily applied to other heterogeneous terrains.

Project PI: Jasmeet Judge/University of Florida

299 Frazier Rogers Hall P.O. Box 110570 Gainesville, FL 32611-0570

Phone: (352)392-1864 ext.299

Fax: (352)392-4092

Email: jasmeet@ufl.edu

http://www.abe.ufl.edu/reu/research-mentors.shtml

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Started: Aug 10, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 16, 2010

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