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Estimating and Validating Soil Evaporation and Crop Transpiration During the HiWATER-MUSOEXE



The two-source energy balance (TSEB) model was successfully applied to estimate evaporation (E), transpiration (T), and evapotranspiration (ET) for land covered with vegetation, which has significantly important applications for the terrestrial water cycle and water resource management. However, the current composite temperature separation approaches are limited in their effectiveness in arid regions. Moreover, E and T are difficult to measure on the ground. In this letter, the ground-measured soil and canopy component temperatures were used to estimate E, T, and ET, which were better validated with observed ratios of E (E/ET%) and T (T/ET%) using the stable oxygen and hydrogen isotopes, and the ET measurements using an eddy covariance (EC) system. Our results indicated that even under the strongly advective conditions, the TSEB model produced reliable estimates of the E/ET% and T/ET% ratios and of ET. The mean bias and root-mean-square error (RMSE) of E/ET% were 1% and 2%, respectively, and the mean bias and RMSE of T/ET% were -1% and 2%, respectively. In addition, the model exhibited relatively reliable estimates in the latent heat flux, with mean bias and RMSE values of 31 and 61 W · m-2, respectively, compared with the measurements from the EC system. These results demonstrated that a robust soil and vegetation component temperature calculation was crucial for estimating E, T, and ET. Moreover, the separate validation of E/ET% and T/ET% provides a good prospect for TSEB model improvements.


  • Arid regions
  • crop transpiration
  • evaporation
  • Evapotranspiration (ET) estimation
  • ground-measured canopy component temperature
  • ground-measured soil component temperature
  • Heating
  • hydrological techniques
  • Land surface temperature
  • radiometry
  • root-mean-square error
  • soil
  • soil and vegetation component temperatures
  • soil evaporation
  • Soil measurements
  • stable hydrogen isotope
  • stable oxygen isotope
  • Temperature measurement
  • temperature separation approaches
  • terrestrial water cycle
  • transpiration
  • TSEB model
  • two-source energy balance model
  • validation
  • Vegetation
  • vegetation component temperature calculation
  • vegetation mapping
  • water resource management
  • water resources


Song LS, Liu SM, Zhang X, Zhou J, Li MS. Estimating and Validating Soil Evaporation and Crop Transpiration During the HiWATER-MUSOEXE. IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters, 2015, 12 (2), 334-338. doi:10.1109/LGRS.2014.2339360

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