Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Substantial Reductions in Cloud Cover and Moisture Transport by Dynamic Plant Responses
Sikma, Martin ; Vilà-Guerau de Arellano, Jordi - \ 2019
Geophysical Research Letters 46 (2019)3. - ISSN 0094-8276 - p. 1870 - 1878.
cloud shading - heterogeneity - land-atmosphere interactions - LES - plant stomatal responses - wind

Cumulus clouds make a significant contribution to the Earth's energy balance and hydrological cycle and are a major source of uncertainty in climate projections. Reducing uncertainty by expanding our understanding of the processes that drive cumulus convection is vital to the accurate identification of future global and regional climate impacts. Here we adopt an interdisciplinary approach that integrates interrelated scales from plant physiology to atmospheric turbulence. Our explicit simulations mimic the land-atmosphere approach implemented in current numerical weather prediction, and global climate models enable us to conclude that neglecting local plant dynamic responses leads to misrepresentations in the cloud cover and midtropospheric moisture convection of up to 21% and 56%, respectively. Our approach offers insights into the key role played by the active vegetation on atmospheric convective mixing that has recently been identified as the source of half of the variance in global warming projections (i.e., equilibrium climate sensitivity).

Sensitivity analysis of a source partitioning method for H2O and CO2 fluxes based on high frequency eddy covariance data : Findings from field data and large eddy simulations
Klosterhalfen, A. ; Moene, A.F. ; Schmidt, M. ; Scanlon, T.M. ; Vereecken, H. ; Graf, A. - \ 2019
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 265 (2019). - ISSN 0168-1923 - p. 152 - 170.
Flux partitioning - Latent heat flux - LES - Net ecosystem exchange - Sensitivity analysis - Water use efficiency

Scanlon and Sahu (2008) and Scanlon and Kustas (2010) proposed a source partitioning method (SK10 in the following) to estimate contributions of transpiration, evaporation, photosynthesis, and respiration to H2O and CO2 fluxes obtained by the eddy covariance method. High frequency eddy covariance raw data time series are needed, and the source partitioning is estimated based on separate application of the flux-variance similarity theory to stomatal and non-stomatal components of the regarded fluxes, as well as on additional assumptions on leaf-level water use efficiency (WUE). We applied SK10 to data from two test sites (forest and cropland) and analyzed partitioning results depending on various ways to estimate WUE from available data. Also, we conducted large eddy simulations (LES), simulating the turbulent transport of H2O and CO2 for contrasting vertical distributions of the canopy sinks/sources, as well as for varying relative magnitudes of soil sources and canopy sinks/sources. SK10 was applied to the synthetic high frequency data generated by LES and the effects of canopy type, measurement height, given sink-source-distributions, and input of varying WUEs were tested regarding the partitioning performance. SK10 requires that the correlation coefficient between stomatal and non-stomatal scalar fluctuations is determined by the ratio of the transfer efficiencies of these scalar components, an assumption (transfer assumption in the following) that could be tested with the generated LES data. The partitioning results of the field sites yielded satisfactory flux fractions, when fair-weather conditions (no precipitation) and a high productive state of the vegetation were present. Further, partitioning performance with regard to soil fluxes increased with crop maturity. Results also showed relatively large dependencies on WUE, where the partitioning factors (median) changed by around -57% and +36%. Measurements of outgoing longwave radiation used for the estimation of foliage temperature and WUE could slightly increase the plausibility of the partitioning results in comparison to soil respiration measurements by decreasing the partitioning factor by up to 42%. The LES-based analysis revealed that for a satisfying performance of SK10, a certain degree of decorrelation of the H2O and CO2 fluctuations (here, |ρq'c’| < 0.975) was needed. This decorrelation is enhanced by a clear separation between soil sources and canopy sinks/sources, and for observations within the roughness sublayer. The expected dependence of the partitioning results on the WUE input could be observed. However, due to violation of the abovementioned transfer assumption, the known true input WUE did not yield the known true input partitioning. This could only be achieved after introducing correction factors for the transfer assumption, which were known however only in the special case of the LES experiments.

Understanding the dissipation of continental fog by analysing the LWP budget using idealized LES and in situ observations
Wærsted, Eivind G. ; Haeffelin, Martial ; Steeneveld, Gert Jan ; Dupont, Jean Charles - \ 2018
Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society 145 (2018)719. - ISSN 0035-9009 - p. 784 - 804.
bowen ratio - fog - Fog dissipation - fog-top entrainment - LES

Physical processes relevant for the dissipation of thick, continental fog after sunrise are studied through observations from the SIRTA observatory and idealized sensitivity studies with the large-eddy simulation model DALES. Observations of 250 fog events over 7 years show that more than half of the fog dissipations after sunrise are transitions to stratus lasting 2 hr or more. From the simulations, we quantify the contribution of each process to the liquid water path (LWP) budget of the fog. Radiative cooling is the main source of LWP, while surface turbulent heat fluxes are the most important process contributing to loss of LWP, followed by the absorption of solar radiation, the mixing with unsaturated air at the fog top and the deposition of cloud droplets. The loss of LWP by surface heat fluxes is very sensitive to the Bowen ratio, which is importantly affected by the availability of liquid water on the surface; in a run without liquid on the surface, fog dissipation occurred 85 min earlier than in the Baseline simulation. The variability of stratification and humidity above fog top is documented by 47 radiosondes and cloud radar. Using DALES, we find that the variability in stratification has an important impact on the entrainment velocity; a three times more rapid fog-top entrainment enables the cloud base to lift from the ground 90 min earlier in weak stratification than in strong stratification in the model. With relatively dry overlying air, the fog evaporates faster than if the air is near saturation, leading to 70 min earlier dissipation in our simulations. Continuous observations of the temperature and humidity profiles of the layer overlying the fog could therefore be useful for understanding and anticipating fog dissipation.

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