Submitted to: Encyclopedia of Soil Science
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: July 15, 2001
Publication Date: February 1, 2002
Citation: Kustas, W.P. Evaporation. Lal, R., editor. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, NY. Encyclopedia of Soil Science. 2002. p. 524-530.
Soil evaporation is a significant component of the total (soil + plant) evaporation for many landscapes where there is less than complete vegetation cover. Over a growing season for many agricultural crops, the contribution of soil evaporation to the total water use cannot be ignored, especially in arid regions requiring irrigation. In addition, the rate of soil evaporation has a significant impact on the microclimate in partially vegetated canopies via its affect on surface soil moisture and temperature conditions, both of which indirectly influence plant transpiration. Models of varying degrees of complexity are reviewed, but the primary focus is on relatively simple analytical models, some of which provide daily estimates and can be implemented operationally. The potential application of models using remote sensing data for large scale estimation is also briefly discussed.