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Estimation of precipitation fields from 1-minute rain gauge time series – comparison of spatial and spatio-temporal interpolation methods

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Accurate estimations of spatio-temporal fields at unsampled locations are important in a number of applications. Often, spatio-temporal fields are advected, which means the change in field values over time at a particular point in space stems to a large extent from motion of a more or less constant spatial field. For such dynamic fields, interpolation methods including information on the motion behaviour of the field are promising extensions of solely spatial (snapshot) and symmetric spatio-temporal methods. In this paper, the performance of different deterministic and geostatistical interpolation methods is compared for precipitation estimation from 1-minute time series of spatially distributed rain gauges. The focus is on spatio-temporal methods that include information on the motion behaviour of the rainfield, estimated from weather radar using optical flow. The different interpolation methods are introduced and evaluated using rain gauge measurements of a 15-day period and cross-validation. The results show that including information on the motion behaviour significantly improves interpolation quality in terms of RMSE.
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Keywords: interpolation; motion field; precipitation; spatio-temporal

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Institute of Cartography and Geoinformatics, Leibniz University of Hannover, Hannover, Germany

Publication date: September 2, 2015

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