• Soil heat flux and day time surface energy balance closure at astronomical observatory, Thiruvananthapuram, south Kerala

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    • Keywords


      Soil heat flux; surface energy balance; Bowen’s ratio; sensible and latent heat fluxes.

    • Abstract


      Soil heat flux is an important input component of surface energy balance. Estimates of soil heat flux were made in the year 2008 using soil temperature data at Astronomical Observatory, Thiruvananthapuram, south Kerala. Hourly values of soil heat flux from 00 to 24 LST are presented for selected days typical of the winter, pre-monsoon, SW monsoon and NE monsoon seasons. The diurnal variation is characterized by a cross-over from negative to positive values at 0700 h, occurrence of maximum around noon and return to negative values in the late evening. The energy storage term for the soil layer 0–0.05 m is calculated and the ground heat flux 𝐺∗ is estimated in all seasons. Daytime surface energy balance at the surface on wet and dry seasons is investigated. The average Bowen’s ratio during the wet and dry seasons were 0.541 and 0.515, respectively indicating that considerable evaporation takes place at the surface. The separate energy balance components were examined and the mean surface energy balance closure was found to be 0.742 and 0.795 for wet and dry seasons, respectively. When a new method that accounts for both soil thermal conduction and soil thermal convection was adopted to calculate the surface heat flux, the energy balance closure was found to be improved. Thus on the land surface under study, the soil vertical water movement is significant.

    • Author Affiliations


      M S Roxy1 V B Sumithranand2 G Renuka3

      1. Department of Physics, Sree Narayana College, Kollam-1, Kerala, India.
      2. Govt. Higher Secondary School, Kulathoor, Thiruvananthapuram 695 583, India.
      3. The Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment (KSCSTE), Sasthra Bhavan, Thiruvananthapuram 4, India.
    • Dates

  • Journal of Earth System Science | News

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