Share Email Print

Proceedings Paper

Measuring evapotranspiration using an eddy covariance system over the Albany Thicket of the Eastern Cape, South Africa
Author(s): O. Gwate; Sukhmani K. Mantel; Anthony R. Palmer; Lesley A. Gibson
Format Member Price Non-Member Price
PDF $17.00 $21.00

Paper Abstract

Determining water and carbon fluxes over a vegetated surface is important in a context of global environmental changes and the fluxes help in understanding ecosystem functioning. Pursuant to this, the study measured evapotranspiration (ET) using an eddy covariance (EC) system installed over an intact example of the Albany Thicket (AT) vegetation in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Environmental constraints to ET were also assessed by examining the response of ET to biotic and abiotic factors. The EC system comprised of an open path Infrared Gas Analyser and Sonic anemometer and an attendant weather station to measure bi-meteorological variables. Post processing of eddy covariance data was conducted using EddyPro software. Quality assessment of fluxes was also performed and rejected and missing data were filled using the method of mean diurnal variations (MDV). Much of the variation in ET was accounted for by the leaf area index (LAI, p < 0.001, 41%) and soil moisture content (SWC, p < 0.001, 32%). Total measured ET during the experiment was greater than total rainfall received owing to the high water storage capacity of the vegetation and the possibility of vegetation accessing ground water. Most of the net radiation was consumed by sensible heat flux and this means that ET in the area is essentially water limited since abundant energy was available to drive turbulent transfers of energy. Understanding the environmental constraints to ET is crucial in predicting the ecosystem response to environmental forces such as climate change.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 October 2016
PDF: 20 pages
Proc. SPIE 9998, Remote Sensing for Agriculture, Ecosystems, and Hydrology XVIII, 99980S (25 October 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2245426
Show Author Affiliations
O. Gwate, Rhodes Univ. (South Africa)
Sukhmani K. Mantel, Rhodes Univ. (South Africa)
Anthony R. Palmer, Animal Production Institute (South Africa)
Lesley A. Gibson, Glasgow Caledonian Univ. (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9998:
Remote Sensing for Agriculture, Ecosystems, and Hydrology XVIII
Christopher M. U. Neale; Antonino Maltese, Editor(s)

© SPIE. Terms of Use
Back to Top
Sign in to read the full article
Create a free SPIE account to get access to
premium articles and original research
Forgot your username?