The creation of realistic gridded precipitation fields improves our understanding of the observed climate and is necessary for validating climate model output for a wide range of applications. The challenge in trying to represent the highly variable nature of precipitation is to overcome the lack of density of observations in both time and space. Data sets of mean monthly and annual precipitations were developed for Greece in gridded format with an analysis of 30 arcsec (∼800 m) based on data from 1971 to 2000. One hundred and fifty-seven surface stations from two different observation networks were used to cover a satisfactory range of elevations. Station data were homogenized and subjected to quality control to represent changes in meteorological conditions rather than changes in the conditions under which the observations were made. The Meteorological Interpolation based on Surface Homogenized Data Basis (MISH) interpolation method was used to develop data sets that reproduce, as closely as possible, the spatial climate patterns over the region of interest. The main geophysical factors considered for the interpolation of mean monthly precipitation fields were elevation, latitude, incoming solar irradiance, Euclidian distance from the coastline, and land-to-sea percentage. Low precipitation interpolation uncertainties estimated with the cross-validation method provided confidence in the interpolation method. The resulting high-resolution maps give an overall realistic representation of precipitation, especially in fall and winter, with a clear longitudinal dependence on precipitation decreasing from western to eastern continental Greece.
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