Satellite-based estimates of groundwater storage variations in large drainage basins with extensive floodplains

Frédéric Frappart, Fabrice Papa, Andreas Güntner, Susanna Werth, Joecila Santos da Silva, Javier Tomasella, Frédérique Seyler, Catherine Prigent, William B. Rossow, Stéphane Calmant, Marie Paule Bonnet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


This study presents monthly estimates of groundwater anomalies in a large river basin dominated by extensive floodplains, the Negro River Basin, based on the synergistic analysis using multisatellite observations and hydrological models. For the period 2003-2004, changes in water stored in the aquifer is isolated from the total water storage measured by GRACE by removing contributions of both the surface reservoir, derived from satellite imagery and radar altimetry, and the root zone reservoir simulated by WGHM and LaD hydrological models. The groundwater anomalies show a realistic spatial pattern compared with the hydrogeological map of the basin, and similar temporal variations to local in situ groundwater observations and altimetry-derived level height measurements. Results highlight the potential of combining multiple satellite techniques with hydrological modeling to estimate the evolution of groundwater storage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1588-1594
Number of pages7
JournalRemote Sensing of Environment
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 15 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Groundwater
  • Hydrological modeling
  • Remote sensing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Soil Science
  • Geology
  • Computers in Earth Sciences


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