Time stability and variability of Electronically Scanned Thinned Array Radiometer soil moisture during Southern Great Plains hydrology experiments


Variability and time‐stability analysis for field‐scale (800 m) Electronically Scanned Thinned Array Radiometer soil moisture within a satellite scale footprint (∼ 50 km) were quantified using observations from the Southern Great Plains Hydrology Experiment 1997 and 1999 (SGP97 and SGP99). The pixels' time‐stability properties were examined with respect to soil, vegetation and topographic parameters in order to determine which physical parameters can be used to identify good candidate observation locations for validating soil moisture from satellite observations and global‐scale model output. The results show that the time‐stability concept remains valid at the satellite scale. The root mean square error values were 1·47, 1·51, 1·93 and 2·32% for the 1st, 2nd, 50th and 100th most stable fields, respectively. The most stable locations had sand and clay percentages consistent with sandy loam soils and moderate to high normalized difference vegetation index values. Neither land cover nor topography properties could be used to identify potentially stable fields in the study region.


Earth Systems Research Center

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Hydrological Processes



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© 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.