TITLE

The Temporal Variability of Soil Moisture and Surface Hydrological Quantities in a Climate Model

AUTHOR(S)
Arora, Vivek K.; Boer, George J.
PUB. DATE
November 2006
SOURCE
Journal of Climate;Nov2006, Vol. 19 Issue 22, p5875
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The variance budget of land surface hydrological quantities is analyzed in the second Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project (AMIP2) simulation made with the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis (CCCma) third-generation general circulation model (AGCM3). The land surface parameterization in this model is the comparatively sophisticated Canadian Land Surface Scheme (CLASS). Second-order statistics, namely variances and covariances, are evaluated, and simulated variances are compared with observationally based estimates. The soil moisture variance is related to second-order statistics of surface hydrological quantities. The persistence time scale of soil moisture anomalies is also evaluated. Model values of precipitation and evapotranspiration variability compare reasonably well with observationally based and reanalysis estimates. Soil moisture variability is compared with that simulated by the Variable Infiltration Capacity-2 Layer (VIC-2L) hydrological model driven with observed meteorological data. An equation is developed linking the variances and covariances of precipitation, evapotranspiration, and runoff to soil moisture variance via a transfer function. The transfer function is connected to soil moisture persistence in terms of lagged autocorrelation. Soil moisture persistence time scales are shorter in the Tropics and longer at high latitudes as is consistent with the relationship between soil moisture persistence and the latitudinal structure of potential evaporation found in earlier studies. In the Tropics, although the persistence of soil moisture anomalies is short and values of the transfer function small, high values of soil moisture variance are obtained because of high precipitation variability. At high latitudes, by contrast, high soil moisture variability is obtained despite modest precipitation variability since the persistence time scale of soil moisture anomalies is long. Model evapotranspiration estimates show little variability and soil moisture variability is dominated by precipitation and runoff, which account for about 90% of the soil moisture variance over land surface areas.
ACCESSION #
23324088

 

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