Estimating seasonal evapotranspiration (ET) has many applications in water resources planning and management, including hydrological and ecological modeling. Availability of satellite remote sensing images is limited due to repeat cycle of satellite or cloud cover. This study was conducted to determine the suitability of different methods namely cubic spline, fixed, and linear for estimating seasonal ET from temporal remotely sensed images. Mapping Evapotranspiration at high Resolution with Internalized Calibration (METRIC) model in conjunction with the wet METRIC (wMETRIC), a modified version of the METRIC model, was used to estimate ET on the days of satellite overpass using eight Landsat images during the 2001 crop growing season in Midwest USA. The model-estimated daily ET was in good agreement (R2 = 0.91) with the eddy covariance tower-measured daily ET. The standard error of daily ET was 0.6 mm (20%) at three validation sites in Nebraska, USA. There was no statistically significant difference (P > 0.05) among the cubic spline, fixed, and linear methods for computing seasonal (July–December) ET from temporal ET estimates. Overall, the cubic spline resulted in the lowest standard error of 6 mm (1.67%) for seasonal ET. However, further testing of this method for multiple years is necessary to determine its suitability.
Additional publication details
Estimating seasonal evapotranspiration from temporal satellite images
Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center