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Remote Sens. 2017, 9(8), 774; doi:10.3390/rs9080774

Impact Analysis of Climate Change on Snow over a Complex Mountainous Region Using Weather Research and Forecast Model (WRF) Simulation and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Data (MODIS)-Terra Fractional Snow Cover Products

1
Key Laboratory of Remote Sensing of Gansu Province, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
2
Heihe Remote Sensing Experimental Research Station, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
3
The Henry Samueli School of Engineering, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
4
CAS Center for Excellence in Tibetan Plateau Earth Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
5
Institute of Urban Development, Shanghai Normal University, Shanghai, 200234, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Claudia Notarnicola and Richard Gloaguen
Received: 17 May 2017 / Revised: 18 July 2017 / Accepted: 26 July 2017 / Published: 29 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Snow Remote Sensing)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2837 KB, uploaded 29 July 2017]   |  

Abstract

Climate change has a complex effect on snow at the regional scale. The change in snow patterns under climate change remains unknown for certain regions. Here, we used high spatiotemporal resolution snow-related variables simulated by a weather research and forecast model (WRF) including snowfall, snow water equivalent and snow depth along with fractional snow cover (FSC) data extracted from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Data (MODIS)-Terra to evaluate the effects of climate change on snow over the Heihe River Basin (HRB), a typical inland river basin in arid northwestern China from 2000 to 2013. We utilized Empirical Orthogonal Function (EOF) analysis and Mann-Kendall/Theil-Sen trend analysis to evaluate the results. The results are as follows: (1) FSC, snow water equivalent, and snow depth across the entire HRB region decreased, especially at elevations over 4500 m; however, snowfall increased at mid-altitude ranges in the upstream area of the HRB. (2) Total snowfall also increased in the upstream area of the HRB; however, the number of snowfall days decreased. Therefore, the number of extreme snow events in the upstream area of the HRB may have increased. (3) Snowfall over the downstream area of the HRB decreased. Thus, ground stations, WRF simulations and remote sensing products can be used to effectively explore the effect of climate change on snow at the watershed scale. View Full-Text
Keywords: snowfall; fractional snow cover; snow water equivalent; snow depth; empirical orthogonal function analysis; Mann-Kendall/Theil-Sen trend analysis snowfall; fractional snow cover; snow water equivalent; snow depth; empirical orthogonal function analysis; Mann-Kendall/Theil-Sen trend analysis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Pan, X.; Li, X.; Cheng, G.; Chen, R.; Hsu, K. Impact Analysis of Climate Change on Snow over a Complex Mountainous Region Using Weather Research and Forecast Model (WRF) Simulation and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Data (MODIS)-Terra Fractional Snow Cover Products. Remote Sens. 2017, 9, 774.

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