Real-Time Data: Developing the Parallel 41 Flux Network
Lead Researchers: Christopher Neale, Eduardo Santos, Dale Bremer
Industry Partners: LICOR, The Climate Corporation 

The need: As farmers and water managers make critical decisions in arid climates, evapotranspiration (ET) is a critical parameter in making efficient water management decision., ET is also difficult to accurately measure. Smart eddy covariance towers can accurately measure evapotranspiration at fixed locations, and the data they generate can be used to validate satellite-based, remotely sensed data.  

The goal: This project’s objective is to expand and update the network of eddy covariance flux towers along the latitude line 41 north, which runs east to west corresponding to ta region of significant food production across the central United States. 

The impact: Researchers added 10 Eddy covariance towers over 2 years:  3 in Iowa, in 5 in Nebraska, 1 in Kansas, and 1 in Colorado. Enhanced collaboration between Daugherty Water for Food Institute and The Climate Corporation supported irrigation scheduling field trials that used the Spatial Evapotranspiration Modeling Interface (SETMI) remote sensing model in an operational capacity to make weekly or twice-weekly irrigation recommendations on producers’ fields based on calculating a soil water balance, combined with flux tower data. The Parallel 41 webpage provides free, real-time access to the data being processed by the flux towers. Eventually, users will be able to register and download datasets.https://parallel41.nebraska.edu/#/ provides free, real-time access to the data being processed by the flux towers. Eventually, users will be able to register and download datasets.