Water Resources Management

, Volume 31, Issue 15, pp 5001–5017 | Cite as

The Effect of Temperature Adjustment on Reference Evapotranspiration and Reconnaissance Drought Index (RDI) in Iran

  • Neda Khanmohammadi
  • Hossein Rezaie
  • Majid Montaseri
  • Javad Behmanesh


The reference evapotranspiration (ET0) is necessary to calculate Reconnaissance Drought Index (RDI). To estimate ET0, FAO56 Penman-Monteith method which needs reference stations data is commonly used. Most of the meteorological stations in Iran are classified as non-reference satations and The use of their data in ET0 calculation can affect the RDI. The objective of the present study is to evaluate the effect of temperature adjustment based on the reference condition on ET0 and RDI values in non-reference stations of Iran. For this purpose, the meteorological data, recorded during 1960–2014 in 27 non-reference stations located in arid and semi-arid regions, were used. First, the values of ET0 were determined using observed values of temperature. Using these values, RDI were computed by Log-Normal and Gamma distributions at annual and 6-month scales. Then the values of minimum, maximum and dew point temperatures were adjusted on the basis of the reference condition. The values of ET0 and consequently RDI were calculated using adjusted data. On the basis of obtained results, at annual and 6-month scales, using observed values of temperature instead of adjusted values in non-reference stations cause to overestimate the value of ET0. Also, using observed data with no adjustment can change the drought class which was determined on the basis of RDI. According to these results, temperature adjustment based on reference condition can change the values of ET0 and RDI which was calculated by using Log-Normal or Gamma distributions at annual and 6-month scales.


Drought RDI index Reference condition Reference evapotranspiration 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neda Khanmohammadi
    • 1
  • Hossein Rezaie
    • 1
  • Majid Montaseri
    • 1
  • Javad Behmanesh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Water EngineeringUrmia UniversityUrmiaIran

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