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Sustainability 2017, 9(11), 1954; doi:10.3390/su9111954

Evaluation and Comparison of TRMM Multi-Satellite Precipitation Products With Reference to Rain Gauge Observations in Hunza River Basin, Karakoram Range, Northern Pakistan

1
State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Science, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
State Key Laboratory of Land Surface and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
4
Laboratory of Remote Sensing and Information Resources for Cold and Arid Regions, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
5
United States-Pakistan Centre for Advanced Studies in Water, Mehran University of Engineering and Technology, Jamshoro, 76062 Sindh, Pakistan
6
Department of Zoology, Government College University Faisalabad, Allama Iqbal Road, Faisalabad 38000, Pakistan
7
Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800, Pakistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 August 2017 / Revised: 15 October 2017 / Accepted: 24 October 2017 / Published: 31 October 2017
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Abstract

The performance evaluation of satellite-based precipitation products at local and regional scales is crucial for modification in satellite-based precipitation retrieval algorithms, as well as for the provision of guidance during the selection of substitute precipitation data. This study evaluated the performances of three Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Multi-satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA) products (3B42V6, 3B42RT and 3B42V7) with a reference to rain gauge observations in the Hunza River basin, northern Pakistan. Multi-spatial (pixel and basin) and temporal (daily, monthly, seasonal and annual) resolutions were considered for performance evaluation of TMPA products. Results revealed that the spatial pattern of observed precipitation over the basin was adequately captured by 3B42V7 but misplaced by 3B42V6 and 3B42RT. All TMPA products were unable to capture the intense precipitation events. On the daily time scale, the performance of TMPA products was very poor over both spatial scales. 3B42V6 underestimated the precipitation (31.25% and 44.27% on pixel and basin scales, respectively). By contrast, 3B42RT significantly overestimated the precipitation (47.91% and 38.62% on pixel and basin scales, respectively), while 3B42V7 showed overestimation (17.30%) on pixel scale and slight underestimation (6.24%) on the basin scale. On the seasonal scale, TMPA products showed significant biases with observed precipitation data. We found that the TMPA products performed relatively better on monthly and annual time scales and overall performance of 3B42V7 product was better than that of 3B42V6 and 3B42RT. The bias in 3B42V7 was improved by 85.90% compared with 3B42V6 and by 116.16% compared with 3B42RT. Thus, it is concluded that the TMPA products were unreliable to capture the intense precipitation events and retain high errors on daily and seasonal scales. Therefore, caution should be considered while using these precipitation estimates as a substitute data in hydrology, meteorology and climatology studies in Hunza River basin. However, due to the reasonable performance of monthly and annual 3B42V7 estimates, these can be used as an acceptable substitute for applications in the region. View Full-Text
Keywords: Hunza River basin; Karakoram Range; satellite precipitation; evaluation Hunza River basin; Karakoram Range; satellite precipitation; evaluation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ali, A.F.; Xiao, C.; Anjum, M.N.; Adnan, M.; Nawaz, Z.; Ijaz, M.W.; Sajid, M.; Farid, H.U. Evaluation and Comparison of TRMM Multi-Satellite Precipitation Products With Reference to Rain Gauge Observations in Hunza River Basin, Karakoram Range, Northern Pakistan. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1954.

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