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Estimating Daily Global Evapotranspiration Using Penman–Monteith Equation and Remotely Sensed Land Surface Temperature

Civil and Environmental Engineering, Northeastern University, 360 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02115, USA
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Remote Sens. 2017, 9(11), 1138; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs9111138
Received: 24 August 2017 / Revised: 20 October 2017 / Accepted: 2 November 2017 / Published: 7 November 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Remote Sensing in Geology, Geomorphology and Hydrology)
Daily evapotranspiration (ET) is modeled globally for the period 2000–2013 based on the Penman–Monteith equation with radiation and vapor pressures derived using remotely sensed Land Surface Temperature (LST) from the MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Aqua and Terra satellites. The ET for a given land area is based on four surface conditions: wet/dry and vegetated/non-vegetated. For each, the ET resistance terms are based on land cover, leaf area index (LAI) and literature values. The vegetated/non-vegetated fractions of the land surface are estimated using land cover, LAI, a simplified version of the Beer–Lambert law for describing light transition through vegetation and newly derived light extension coefficients for each MODIS land cover type. The wet/dry fractions of the land surface are nonlinear functions of LST derived humidity calibrated using in-situ ET measurements. Results are compared to in-situ measurements (average of the root mean squared errors and mean absolute errors for 39 sites are 0.81 mm day−1 and 0.59 mm day−1, respectively) and the MODIS ET product, MOD16, (mean bias during 2001–2013 is −0.2 mm day−1). Although the mean global difference between MOD16 and ET estimates is only 0.2 mm day−1, local temperature derived vapor pressures are the likely contributor to differences, especially in energy and water limited regions. The intended application for the presented model is simulating ET based on long-term climate forecasts (e.g., using only minimum, maximum and mean daily or monthly temperatures). View Full-Text
Keywords: evapotranspiration; remote sensing; MODIS; canopy evaporation; soil surface evaporation; transpiration; vegetation cover fraction; wet fraction; AmeriFlux evapotranspiration; remote sensing; MODIS; canopy evaporation; soil surface evaporation; transpiration; vegetation cover fraction; wet fraction; AmeriFlux
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MDPI and ACS Style

Raoufi, R.; Beighley, E. Estimating Daily Global Evapotranspiration Using Penman–Monteith Equation and Remotely Sensed Land Surface Temperature. Remote Sens. 2017, 9, 1138.

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