Evaluating the Spatial and Temporal Variability of Soil Moisture within the Brightwater Creek, Saskatchewan, Canada

Burns, Travis
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University of Guelph

Soil moisture has been shown to be strongly coupled to many environmental processes. Satellite missions capable of global soil moisture retrieval have recently launched which will supply data to model these applications. Satellite missions will need to utilize in-situ soil moisture networks to calibrate and validate retrievals. This research evaluates two procedures in order to identify which produces the lowest probe measurement error. The dry-down procedure was superior to the wet-up procedure across all samples. This study is important to researchers who want to achieve the lowest possible soil moisture measurement error. This research also characterises spatial and temporal soil moisture variability within the Brightwater Creek watershed by using statistical and geo-statistical methods. Soil moisture spatial variability is controlled primarily by rainfall variability and mean soil wetness at the study scale with longer temporal autocorrelation in deeper layers. These results have importance for satellite calibration and validation missions as well as for model parameterization.

soil moisture, correlation, in-situ network, regional scale, calibration, spatial variability, temporal variability