Lake Hulun is the fifth largest lake in China. The dramatic water-volume variations since the 21th century has aroused concerns from local and transboundary water resource authorities. To track its dynamics during the past sixteen years with no aid of in-situ data, serial Jason
altimeters and optical remote sensing images were integrated to reconstruct the time series of the water-volume variations. We developed a workflow consisting of four procedures: 1) Deriving the water-level time series using Jason-1, Jason-2 and Jason-3 after applying a feature-based waveform
classification method and a targeted waveform retracking strategy; 2) Extracting the water-area by using Landsat images; 3) Establishing the relationship between water-level and water-area; and 4) Reconstructing the water-volume variation time series by integrating the water-level time series
and the relationship derived from 3). We found that Lake Hulun has gone through three stages of changes: 1) Period one (2002–2009), water-level and volume dropped significantly at a rate of −0.40 m yr−1 and −0.73 km3 yr−1,
respectively. 2) Period two (2010–2012), the water-level and volume were relatively stable. 3) Period three (2013–2015), the water-level and volume began to rise rapidly at the rates of 1.09 m yr−1 and 1.99 km3 yr−1, respectively.
In addition, two significant change years (2007 and 2013) were detected, which corresponded well with extreme climatic conditions. Preliminary analyses indicate that the water-volume variations are closely related to precipitation and temperature anomalies in wet seasons.
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Document Type: Research Article
Ministry of Education Key Laboratory for Earth System Modelling, Department of Earth System Science, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
State Key Laboratory of Remote Sensing Science, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
Jiangsu Provincial Key Laboratory of Geographic Information Science and Technology, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China
Publication date: January 17, 2019
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