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Evaluation of temporal variations in soil moisture based on the microwave polarization difference index using in situ data over agricultural areas in China
- Han, Xiao-Jing, Duan, Si-Bo, Tang, Ronglin, Liu, Hai-Qi, Li, Zhao-Liang
- International journal of remote sensing 2015 v.36 no.19-20 pp. 5003-5014
- energy transfer, remote sensing, soil depth, soil water, temporal variation, China
- Soil moisture plays a critical role in the energy exchange and water redistribution of the land-atmosphere system. Knowledge of the temporal variations in soil moisture is vital in agricultural applications. Microwave indices are often used to characterize the temporal variations in soil moisture. In this study, we evaluate the temporal variations in soil moisture based on the microwave polarization difference index (MPDI) using ground-based measurements in China. In situ soil moisture at six test sites during the crop-growing season from 2009 to 2011 is obtained. The consistency of the temporal variations between the MPDI values and the in situ soil moisture is analysed in terms of (1) microwave frequencies, (2) satellite overpass times, and (3) measurement depths of soil moisture. The results show that the accuracies of the consistency vary from approximately 40% to 90%. Compared with the in situ soil moisture at 0–10 cm, the temporal variations in soil moisture are best characterized by the 6.9 GHz MPDI values from the ascending overpasses (MPDI_06A). Furthermore, the accuracies of the consistency between MPDI_06A and the in situ soil moisture at 0–10 cm are greater than those between MPDI_06A and the in situ soil moisture at 10–20 cm.