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Journal of Arid Land  2014, Vol. 6 Issue (5): 529-539    DOI: 10.1007/s40333-014-0061-1
Research Articles     
Evapotranspiration of an oasis-desert transition zone in the middle stream of Heihe River, Northwest China
LiWen ZHAO1,2, WenZhi ZHAO1,2*
1 Linze Inland River Basin Research Station, Chinese Ecosystem Network Research, Lanzhou 730000, China;
2 Key Laboratory of Ecohydrology of Inland River Basin, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
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Abstract  As a main component in water balance, evapotranspiration is of great importance for water saving and irrigation-measure making, especially in arid or semiarid regions. Although studies of evapotranspiration have been conducted for a long time, studies concentrated on oasis-desert transition zone are very limited. On the basis of the meteorological data and other parameters (e.g. leaf area index (LAI)) of an oasis-desert transition zone in the middle stream of Heihe River from 2005 to 2011, this paper calculated both reference (ET0) and actual evapotranspiration (ETc) using FAO56 Penman-Monteith and Penman-Monteith models, respectively. In combination with pan evaporation (Ep) measured by E601 pan evaporator, four aspects were analyzed: (1) ET0 was firstly verified by Ep; (2) Characteristics of ET0 and ETc were compared, while the influencing factors were also analyzed; (3) Since meteorological data are often unavailable for estimating ET0 through FAO56 Penman-Monteith model in this region, pan evaporation coefficient (Kp) is very important when using observed Ep to predict ET0. Under this circumstance, an empirical formula of Kp was put forward for this region; (4) Crop coefficient (Kc), an important index to reflect evapotranspiration, was also analyzed. Results show that mean annual values of ET0 and ETc were 840 and 221 mm, respectively. On the daily bases, ET0 and ETc were 2.3 and 0.6 mm/d, respectively. The annual tendency of ET0 and ETc was very similar, but their amplitude was obviously different. The differences among ET0 and ETc were mainly attributed to the different meteorological variables and leaf area index. The calculated Kc was about 0.25 and showed little variation during the growing season, indicating that available water (e.g. precipitation and irrigation) of about 221 mm/a was required to keep the water balance in this region. The results provide an comprehensive analysis of evapotranspiration for an oasis-desert transition zone in the middle stream of Heihe River, which was seldom reported before.

Key wordsrangelands management      grazing pressure      richness      diversity      productivity     
Received: 03 September 2013      Published: 12 October 2014

This work was founded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (40930634, 41125002).

Corresponding Authors: WenZhi ZHAO     E-mail:
Cite this article:

LiWen ZHAO, WenZhi ZHA. Evapotranspiration of an oasis-desert transition zone in the middle stream of Heihe River, Northwest China. Journal of Arid Land, 2014, 6(5): 529-539.

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