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Title: Water balance in the Amazon basin from a land surface model ensemble

Despite recent advances in modeling and remote sensing of land surfaces, estimates of the global water budget are still fairly uncertain. The objective of this study is to evaluate the water budget of the Amazon basin based on several state-of-the-art land surface model (LSM) outputs. Water budget variables [total water storage (TWS), evapotranspiration (ET), surface runoff (R) and baseflow (B)] are evaluated at the basin scale using both remote sensing and in situ data. Fourteen LSMs were run using meteorological forcings at a 3-hourly time step and 1-degree spatial resolution. Three experiments are performed using precipitation which has been rescaled to match monthly global GPCP and GPCC datasets and the daily HYBAM dataset for the Amazon basin. R and B are used to force the Hydrological Modeling and Analysis Platform (HyMAP) river routing scheme and simulated discharges are compared against observations at 165 gauges. Simulated ET and TWS are compared against FLUXNET and MOD16A2 evapotranspiration, and GRACE TWS estimates in different catchments. At the basin scale, simulated ET ranges from 2.39mm.d-1 to 3.26mm.d-1 and a low spatial correlation between ET and P indicates that evapotranspiration does not depend on water availability over most of the basin. Results also show thatmore » other simulated water budget variables vary significantly as a function of both the LSM and precipitation used, but simulated TWS generally agree at the basin scale. The best water budget simulations resulted from experiments using the HYBAM dataset, mostly explained by a denser rainfall gauge network the daily rescaling.« less
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
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Journal Name: Journal of Hydrometeorology, 15(6):2586-2614
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States
water balance, Amazon, land surface models