Analog Site Experiment in the High Andes-Atacama Region: Surface Energy Budget Components on Ojos del Salado from Field Measurements and WRF Simulations.

Abstract:

:Remote sensing data are abundant, whereas surface in situ verification of atmospheric conditions is rare on Mars. Earth-based analogs could help gain an understanding of soil and atmospheric processes on Mars and refine existing models. In this work, we evaluate the applicability of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model against measurements from the Mars analog High Andes-Atacama Desert. Validation focuses on the surface conditions and on the surface energy budget. Measurements show that the average daily net radiation, global radiation, and latent heat flux amount to 131, 273, and about 10 W/m2, respectively, indicating extremely dry atmospheric conditions. Dynamically, the effect of topography is also well simulated. One of the main modeling problems is the inaccurate initial soil and surface conditions in the area. Correction of soil moisture based on in situ and satellite soil moisture measurements, as well as the removal of snow coverage, reduced the surface skin temperature root mean square error from 9.8°C to 4.3°C. The model, however, has shortcomings when soil condition modeling is considered. Sensible heat flux estimations are on par with the measurements (daily maxima around 500 W/m2), but surface soil heat flux is greatly overestimated (by 150-500 W/m2). Soil temperature and soil moisture diurnal variations are inconsistent with the measurements, partially due to the lack of water vapor representation in soil calculations.

journal_name

Astrobiology

journal_title

Astrobiology

authors

Breuer H,Berényi A,Mari L,Nagy B,Szalai Z,Tordai Á,Weidinger T

doi

10.1089/ast.2019.2024

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2020-06-01 00:00:00

pages

684-700

issue

6

eissn

1531-1074

issn

1557-8070

journal_volume

20

pub_type

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