Theme: Observational Data

OzEWEX aims to promote awareness, access and continuity of existing observation data sources that are critical for research of the energy and water cycle, and to evaluate new observations. The data of interest derive both from operational and research monitoring networks and programs as well as from occasional field, airborne and satellite data collection campaigns.  Where data are deemed particularly valuable for research but are not easily accessible or future availability is not secure, OzEWEX will in addition aim to advocate for their (continued) provision. Where research data are not yet readily available, OzEWEX will encourage data owners to make the data publicly available or allow OzEWEX members to do so on their behalf. OzEWEX will also encourage the use of data standards and the provision of uncertainty information.

Existing data types of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • In situ observations: precipitation and other meteorological observations at climate stations and flux towers, eddy covariance water and carbon flux data, hydrometric monitoring data (e.g., streamflow, groundwater level), soil moisture measurements.
  • Remote sensing observations: atmospherically corrected Landsat imagery; optical, thermal, passive microwave and radar land surface remote sensing time series; airborne and satellite soil moisture data at various resolutions.
  • Derived data products: national-scale dynamic or static land cover or use, elevation, physical soil properties (e.g., water holding capacity), physical vegetation properties (e.g., albedo, canopy conductance).

To assist the research community in discovering existing data sources, an anticipated WG activity will survey and web-publish hyperlinked summary of currently available data and data portals. An illustrative but incomplete listing includes: various climate and water data services provided by the BoM, water data provided by state agencies or departments, flux tower observations and remote sensing data products currently coordinated through the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (OzFlux and AusCover, respectively), the MoistureMap and OzNet soil moisture data portals and gridded data provided through CSIRO’s Earth Observation Services portal (EOS), including the CosmOz cosmic ray sensor soil moisture network .

New observational data sources of particular interest will include the Global Precipitation Mission and the Soil Moisture Active Passive mission. Activities are anticipated to evaluate the accuracy of and utility of these new observations once available.

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