MOD-LSP, MODIS-based parameters for hydrologic modeling of North American land cover change

Theodore J. Bohn, Enrique R. Vivoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Earth systems models require gridded land surface properties to compute fluxes of water, energy, and carbon within the landscape and to the atmosphere. However, most parameter sets contain time-invariant properties despite their known variability. Here we present new MODerate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)-based land surface parameters (MOD-LSP) formatted for the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model that account for seasonal and interannual variability and longer-term change over the continental United States, Mexico, and southern Canada at 0.0625° spatial resolution and monthly temporal resolution. MOD-LSP improves over previously-available parameter sets via: (1) land cover maps of higher native spatial resolution; (2) multiple versions corresponding to the land cover of years 1992, 2001, and 2011; (3) spatially-explicit mean annual cycles of land surface properties, including leaf area index, canopy fraction, and albedo, derived from 17 years of observations; and (4) additional 17-year time series of these properties. The MOD-LSP parameters are useful as inputs to the VIC model, as an example land surface scheme, to assess the hydrologic impacts of land cover change from interannual to decadal scales; and as stand-alone datasets characterizing the temporal variability of these properties as a function of land cover class.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number144
JournalScientific Data
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Information Systems
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Library and Information Sciences


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