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Comparative Analysis of Spatial Interpolation Methods in the Mediterranean Area: Application to Temperature in Sicily

National Research Council ISSIA—Institute of Intelligent Systems for Automation—UOS Palermo, Via Dante Alighieri 92, Palermo 90141, Italy
Department of Civil Engineering, Environmental, Aerospace, of Materials University of Palermo, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Building 8, Palermo 90128, Italy
Sustainable Agro-ecosystems and Bioresources Department, IASMA Research and Innovation Centre, Fondazione Edmund Mach, Via E. Mach 1, San Michele all'Adige (TN) 38010, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Miklas Scholz
Water 2015, 7(5), 1866-1888;
Received: 4 February 2015 / Revised: 10 April 2015 / Accepted: 13 April 2015 / Published: 27 April 2015
PDF [4576 KB, uploaded 9 June 2015]


An exhaustive comparison among different spatial interpolation algorithms was carried out in order to derive annual and monthly air temperature maps for Sicily (Italy). Deterministic, data-driven and geostatistics algorithms were used, in some cases adding the elevation information and other physiographic variables to improve the performance of interpolation techniques and the reconstruction of the air temperature field. The dataset is given by air temperature data coming from 84 stations spread around the island of Sicily. The interpolation algorithms were optimized by using a subset of the available dataset, while the remaining subset was used to validate the results in terms of the accuracy and bias of the estimates. Validation results indicate that univariate methods, which neglect the information from physiographic variables, significantly entail the largest errors, while performances improve when such parameters are taken into account. The best results at the annual scale have been obtained using the the ordinary kriging of residuals from linear regression and from the artificial neural network algorithm, while, at the monthly scale, a Fourier-series algorithm has been used to downscale mean annual temperature to reproduce monthly values in the annual cycle. View Full-Text
Keywords: geostatistics; Sicily; spatial interpolation; temperature geostatistics; Sicily; spatial interpolation; temperature
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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Piazza, A.D.; Conti, F.L.; Viola, F.; Eccel, E.; Noto, L.V. Comparative Analysis of Spatial Interpolation Methods in the Mediterranean Area: Application to Temperature in Sicily. Water 2015, 7, 1866-1888.

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