Determination of regional heat fluxes over heterogeneous land surfaces

Yaoming Ma*, Weiqing Ma, Maoshan Li, Zhongbo Su, Massimo Menenti, Osamu Tsukamoto, Hirohiko Ishikawa, Toshio Koike, Jun Wen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Arid areas (e.g. desertification area) and high elevation areas (e.g. the Tibetan Plateau) with inhomogeneous landscapes are characterized by extreme gradients in land surface properties such as wetness, roughness and temperature, which have a significant but local impact on the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL). Observation of the actual extent over these areas is essential to understand the mechanisms through which inhomogeneous land surfaces may have a significant impact on the structure and dynamics of the overlying ABL. Progress in this research area requires spatial measurements of variables such as surface hemispherical reflectance, radiometric surface temperature, Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), Modified Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index (MSAVI), vegetation coverage, leaf area index (LAI), local aerodynamic roughness length, etc. Imaging radiometric board satellites can provide useful estimates of most of these variables. By using these variables, we can derive the distribution of land surface heat fluxes over inhomogeneous landscape. Parameterization methods to derive the regional land surface variables, vegetation variables and land surface heat fluxes over inhomogeneous landscapes by using NOAA/AVHRR data, Landsat TM data and field observations have been proposed in this study. The method was applied to the areas of the GAME/Tibet and the HEIFE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-214
Number of pages9
JournalIAHS-AISH Publication
Issue number289
Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational conference of GIS and Remote Sensing in Hydrology, Water Resources and Environment, ICGRSHWE 2003 - Three Gorges Dam, China
Duration: 16 Sep 200319 Sep 2003


  • Field observations
  • Heterogeneous landscape
  • Regional land surface heat fluxes
  • Satellite remote sensing


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