Sensible and latent heat flux from radiometric surface temperatures at the regional scale: methodology and validation

F. Miglietta, B. Gioli, Y. Brunet, R.W.A. Hutjes, A. Matese, C. Sarrat, A. Zaldei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The CarboEurope Regional Experiment Strategy (CERES) was designed to develop and test a range of methodologies to assess regional surface energy and mass exchange of a large study area in the south-western part of France. This paper describes a methodology to estimate sensible and latent heat fluxes on the basis of net radiation, surface radiometric temperature measurements and information obtained from available products derived from the Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) geostationary meteorological satellite, weather stations and ground-based eddy covariance towers. It is based on a simplified bulk formulation of sensible heat flux that considers the degree of coupling between the vegetation and the atmosphere and estimates latent heat as the residual term of net radiation. Estimates of regional energy fluxes obtained in this way are validated at the regional scale by means of a comparison with direct flux measurements made by airborne eddy-covariance. The results show an overall good matching between airborne fluxes and estimates of sensible and latent heat flux obtained from radiometric surface temperatures that holds for different weather conditions and different land use types. The overall applicability of the proposed methodology to regional studies is discussed
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1975-1986
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • climatic change
  • carbon dioxide
  • temperature
  • models
  • convective boundary-layer
  • evapotranspiration rates
  • eddy covariance
  • carbon-dioxide
  • water-vapor
  • aircraft
  • model
  • airborne
  • field
  • emissivity

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