One-dimensional statistical dynamic representation of subgrid spatial variability of precipitation in the two-layer variable infiltration capacity model

Xu Liang, Dennis P. Lettenmaier, Eric F. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

296 Scopus citations

Abstract

The two-layer variable infiltration capacity (VIC-2L) model is extended to incorporate a representation of subgrid variability in precipitation, using an analytical one-dimensional statistical dynamic representation for partial area coverage of precipitation. The analytical approach allows the effects of subgrid-scale spatial variability of precipitation on surface fluxes, runoff production, and soil moisture to be represented explicitly. With this method, spatially integrated representations of surface fluxes, runoff, and soil moisture due to subgrid-scale spatial variability in precipitation, infiltration, and vegetation cover are obtained. The results are compared with those obtained using an exhaustive pixel-based approach, and the results obtained by applying uniform precipitation over the precipitation-covered area. The precipitation coverage over a grid cell is shown to play a primary role in estimating the surface fluxes, runoff, and soil moisture. In general, the spatial distribution of precipitation within the precipitation-covered area plays a secondary role, in part because VIC-2L represents the subgrid spatial variability of soil properties. While the analytical approach gives good approximations to the pixel-based approach, and is superior to the uniform precipitation approach in general, the differences are not large.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21403-21422
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres
Volume101
Issue number16
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 27 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology

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