Estimation of Evapotranspiration by Various Net Radiation Estimation Formulae for Non-Irrigated Grass in Brazil


The objective of this study was to assess the accuracy of estimating evapotranspiration (ET) using the FAO-56 Penman-Monteith (FAO-56-PM) model, with measured and estimated net radiation (Rnmeasured and Rnestimated, respectively), the latter obtained via five different models. We used meteorological data collected between August 2005 and June 2008, on a daily basis and on a seasonal basis (wet vs. dry seasons). The following data were collected: temperature; relative humidity; global global solar radiation (Rs); wind speed and soil heat flux. The atmospheric pressure was determined by aneroid barograph, and sunshine duration was quantified with a Campbell-Stokes recorder. In addition to the sensor readings (Rnmeasured), five different models were used in order to obtain the Rnestimated. Four of those models consider the effects of cloud cover: the original Brunt model; the FAO-24 model for wet climates; the FAO-24 model for dry climates, and the FAO-56 model. The fifth was a linear regression model based on Rs. In estimating the daily ET0 with the FAO-56-PM model, Rnmeasured can be replaced by Rnestimated, in accordance with the FAO-24 model for dry climates, with a relative error of 2.9%, or with the FAO-56 model, with an error of 4.9%, when Rs is measured, regardless of the season. The Rnestimated obtained with the fifth model has a relatively high error. The original Brunt model and FAO-24 model for wet climates performed more poorly than did the other models in estimating the Rn and ET0. In overcast conditions, the original Brunt model, the FAO-24 model for wet climates, the FAO-24 model for dry climates, the FAO-56 model and the model of linear regression with Rs as the predictor variable tended to overestimate Rn and ET, those estimates becoming progressively more accurate as the cloud cover diminished.

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Cunha, A. , Schöffel, E. and Volpe, C. (2014) Estimation of Evapotranspiration by Various Net Radiation Estimation Formulae for Non-Irrigated Grass in Brazil. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 6, 1425-1436. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2014.615131.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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