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Time–space linear regression analysis of the snow cover in a pre-Alpine semi-forested catchment

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Sub-grid variability of the snow cover is an important issue with regard to catchment runoff or mesoscale meteorological modeling. Here, an evaluation is presented of spatial snow measurements conducted on 5 days in winter 1998/99 and 2 days in winter 1999/2000 in a 0.7 km2 Swiss pre-Alpine catchment. Snow-depth data were analyzed with two different linear regression models, one including altitude, terrain slope, terrain aspect and canopy density, and one using altitude and simple land-use indicators. For the single measurement dates the first model was somewhat superior to the indicator model. The error term of the regression models showed only weak spatial dependence. Finally, a time–space linear regression model describing both the temporal development and the spatial distribution of the snow cover was fitted with the measurements of the first winter and tested with measurements of the second winter. The validation showed a satisfactory match between measurements and models in late December, but a slight overestimation of the measurements by the models in early April. In view of the models' ability to reproduce the snow-depth patterns satisfactorily at this rather detailed scale, it was concluded that such regression models might be a suitable tool to treat sub-grid variability of snow depth in larger-scale models.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2001

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  • The Annals of Glaciology is a peer-reviewed, thematic journal published 2 to 4 times a year by the International Glaciological Society (IGS). Publication frequency is determined and volume/issue numbers assigned by the IGS Council on a year-to-year basis and with a lead time of 3 to 4 years. The Annals of Glaciology is included in the ISI Science Citation Index from volume 50, number 50 onwards.

    Themes can be on any aspect of the study of snow and ice. Individual members can make a suggestion for a theme for an Annals issue to the Secretary General, who will forward it to the IGS Publications Committee. The IGS Publication Committee will make a recommendation for an individual themed Annals issue, together with a potential Annals Chief Editor for that issue, to IGS Council. The IGS Council will make the decision whether to proceed, taking into account the spread of topics and the overall capacity for publication of pages in Annals.

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