The Estimation of Evapotranspiration
To determine irrigation requirements and to design irrigation systems, the irrigationist must know the evaporation losses from crops. The physics of evaporation treated in Chapter 3 indicate that these losses could be assessed from purely meteorological considerations. However, the exact meteorological methods require specialized instrumentation that is generally not available to the field irrigationist. Furthermore, these methods are inadequate when it is necessary to forecast the irrigation needs of new areas. A large number of empirical and semiempirical formulas relating evapotranspiration to standard climatological data have been developed to obviate these shortcomings. In this chapter we shall describe the most commonly used formulas. More detailed reviews and complete references are available in Hagan et al. (1967).
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