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A Long-Term Land Surface Hydrologic Fluxes and States Dataset for China



A long-term consistent and comprehensive dataset of land surface hydrologic fluxes and states will greatly benefit the analysis of land surface variables, their changes and interactions, and the assessment of land–atmosphere parameterizations for climate models. While some offline model studies can provide balanced water and energy budgets at land surface, few of them have presented an evaluation of the long-term interaction of water balance components over China. Here, a consistent and comprehensive land surface hydrologic fluxes and states dataset for China using the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model driven by long-term gridded observation-based meteorological forcings is developed. The hydrologic dataset covers China with a 0.25° spatial resolution and a 3-hourly time step for 1952–2012. In the dataset, the simulated streamflow matches well with the observed monthly streamflow at the large river basins in China. Given the water balance scheme in the VIC model, the overall success at runoff simulations suggests that the long-term mean evapotranspiration is also realistically estimated. The simulated soil moisture generally reproduces the seasonal variation of the observed soil moisture at the ground stations where long-term observations are available. The modeled snow cover patterns and monthly dynamics bear an overall resemblance to the Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Compared with global product of a similar nature, the dataset can provide a more reliable estimate of land surface variables over China. The dataset, which will be publicly available via the Internet, may be useful for hydroclimatological studies in China.


Zhang, Xue-Jun, Tang, Qiuhong, Pan, Ming, Tang, Yin. A Long-Term Land Surface Hydrologic Fluxes and States Dataset for China. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 2014, 15(5):2067-2084. doi:10.1175/JHM-D-13-0170.1

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