A multi-layer land surface energy budget model for implicit coupling with global atmospheric simulations


In Earth system modelling, a description of the energy budget of the vegetated surface layer is fundamental as it determines the meteorological conditions in the planetary boundary layer and as such contributes to the atmospheric conditions and its circulation. The energy budget in most Earth system models has long been based on a “big-leaf approach”, with averaging schemes that represent in-canopy processes. Such models have diculties in reproducing consistently the energy balance in field observations. We here outline a newly developed numerical model for energy budget simulation, as a component of the land surface model ORCHIDEE-CAN (Organising Carbon and Hydrology In Dynamic Ecosystems – CANopy). This new model implements techniques from single-site canopy models in a practical way. It includes representation of in-canopy transport, a multilayer longwave radiation budget, height-specific calculation of aerodynamic and stomatal conductance, and interaction with the bare soil flux within the canopy space. Significantly, it avoids iterations over the height of tha canopy and so maintains implicit coupling to the atmospheric model LMDz. As a first test, the model is evaluated against data from both an intensive measurement campaign and longer term eddy covariance measurements for the intensively studied Eucalyptus stand at Tumbarumba, Australia. The model performs well in replicating both diurnal and annual cycles of fluxes, as well as the gradients of sensible heat fluxes. However, the model overestimates sensible heat flux against an underestimate of the radiation budget. Improved performance is expected through the implementation of a more detailed calculation of stand albedo and a more up-to-date stomatal conductance calculation.
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