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A model for predicting actual evapotranspiration under soil water stress in a Mediterranean region


In this paper a model for estimating actual evapotranspiration is developed and tested for field crops (grain sorghum and sunflower) maintained under water stress conditions. The model is based on the Penman-Monteith formulation of ET in which canopy resistance (r c) is modeled with respect to the crop water status and local climatological conditions. The model was previously tested on reference grass; in this last case no reference was made to soil water conditions andr c was modeled only as a function of climatological parameters. Herer c is expressed as a function of available energy, vapour pressure deficit, aerodynamic resistance and crop water status by means of predawn leaf water potential. Results, obtained with various crop water stress intensities, show that, on a daily scale, calculated ET is 98% and 95% of the measured ET for sorghum and sunflower respectively. The correlation between daily calculated and measured ET is very high (r 2 = 0.95 for sorghum andr 2 = 0.98 for sunflower). On an hourly scale, the model works very well when the crops were not stressed and during the senescence stage. In case of weak and strong stress the model has to be used with some precautions.

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Rana, G., Katerji, N., Mastrorilli, M. et al. A model for predicting actual evapotranspiration under soil water stress in a Mediterranean region. Theor Appl Climatol 56, 45–55 (1997). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00863782

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  • Water Stress
  • Sorghum
  • Vapour Pressure Deficit
  • Leaf Water Potential
  • Actual Evapotranspiration