Recent developments in drought monitoring and drought prediction using in situ soil moisture

2015 Fall Cyberseminar Series

Steven M. Quiring / Texas A&M University

Talk Description:

Soil moisture is critical for accurate drought assessment and forecasting, identifying flood potential, climate modeling, estimation of crop yields and water budgeting. However, soil moisture data are collected by many agencies and organizations in the United States using a variety of instruments and methods for varying applications. These data are often distributed and represented in disparate formats, posing significant challenges for reuse. Recognizing this need, the President’s Climate Action Plan called for the creation of a coordinated national soil moisture network. In response, a team led by the National Integrated Drought Information System has completed a proof-of-concept pilot project. The pilot provides real-time soil moisture data via standard web services to feed map-based visualization tools in order to meet the following use cases: operational drought monitoring, experimental land surface modeling, and operational hydrological modeling. The result of this pilot is a reference architecture that will inform the implementation of the national network.

This presentation provides an overview of the National Soil Moisture Network pilot project and it highlights a variety of drought monitoring and drought prediction studies that have been completed using in situ soil moisture data. These studies include investigations of land-atmosphere interactions, development of seasonal forecasts of extreme temperatures and validation of satellite and land-surface model-based estimates of soil moisture.


Steven M. Quiring is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. He has worked at Texas A&M University since 2005. His research focuses on hydroclimatology, land-atmosphere interactions and drought monitoring/prediction. He has published more than 50 journal articles and his research has been funded a variety of state and federal organizations including DOE, NOAA, NSF, NIDIS, TWDB, and USDA.

CUAHSI's 2015 Fall Cybseminar Series on The Western U.S. Drought on the Ground and from Space: Combining in situ and remotely sensed data to understand and mitigate drought!

Hosted by Todd Caldwell Bureau of Economic Geology, University of Texas