A Modeling Approach to Estimating Snow Cover Depletion and Soil Moisture Recharge in a Semi-arid Climate at Two NASA CLPX Sites
M.S. (Watershed Science) 2004 Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA 80523-1472
B.S. (Atmospheric Sciences) 2000 The University of North Carolina at Asheville, North Carolina, USA 28804
The results from SNTHERM and FASST and the model performance statistics illustrate that the models overall fit to the observations were excellent at both locations. SNTHERM predicted the snow cover depletion date two days later than the observations at Buffalo Pass and only one day prior to the observations at Illinois River. The timing of snow accumulation and melt at Illinois River was in agreement with the observations at Illinois River, but the magnitude of snow depth was incorrect. The shallow and patchy nature of snow cover and the inconsistent meteorological parameters were problematic for SNTHERM. FASST correctly predicted the magnitude of seasonal soil moisture storage at both sites, but soil moisture recharge prediction was challenging for the model. A lateral flow module and thorough soil data are thought to improve FASSTís capability to predict the timing of soil moisture change. SNTHERM and FASST prove to possess the ability to predict snow cover depletion and seasonal soil moisture storage at two radically different field sites.
Advisor: Steven Fassnacht
Co-Advisor: Kelly Elder (USFS RMRS)
Susan Frankenstein (USACE-CRREL)
Greg Butters (Soil and Crop Science)