To achieve a better understanding of the changes at the soil
surface under the influence of water regime changes at lower
level, the effects of variable precipitation and the effects of
the structure of the atmospheric boundary layer.
The main tasks of the project are: to evaluate and synthesize the
results of the EFEDA field experiment in Castilla-La Mancha in
1991, to apply collected field data in mechanistic
soil-water-plant models, to extend the investigations by
extrapolation to a larger area (100 Km x 100 Km), and
carry out specific field experiments in this area and to
contribute to the definition of a long term monitoring programme
to follow regional hydrological processes and remote sensing.
The field work is central to this subproject in which relevant
soil, vegetation and atmosphere parameters will be measured to
obtain necessary data for testing mechanistic models which
describe the interaction between the soil, the vegetation and the
atmosphere. The experimental set-up will consist of newly
defined pilot zones and the three original EFEDA I sites. Two of
the EFEDA I sites, will be equipped with automated and remotely
questioned energy balance and weather station, with the aim to
provide long-term monitoring of relevant climatic quantities. In
addition to these stations, mobile equipment will be used to
measure the soil and vegetation parameters in order to extend
spatially variable properties into regional models.
The observation stations will be operated from spring in order to
determine the ecological situation near the end of the wet
period. The intense field campaign will be developed in the dry
season of summer, although several groups will carry out the
research in differently lasted periods, from the late spring
through the early autumn. Analysis of changes in land use will
be carried out on the experimental area, including an assessment
of the contemporary vegetation and land-use system.
The collected data will be used to model the soil hydraulic
performance and transfer processes, as well as its variability
for the whole area of the project. Then, it should be possible
to relate these data to satellite measurements to follow regional
processes and to provide a better understanding of indicative
mechanisms of desertification which take place under typically
Mediterranean environmental conditions.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
6709 PA Wageningen