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Global patterns of shallow groundwater temperatures

Benz, Susanne A.; Bayer, Peter; Blum, Philipp

Only meters below our feet, shallow aquifers serve as sustainable energy source and provide freshwater storage and ecological habitats. All of these aspects are crucially impacted by the thermal regime of the subsurface. Due to the limited accessibility of aquifers however, temperature measurements are scarce. Most commonly, shallow groundwater temperatures are approximated by adding an offset to annual mean surface air temperatures. Yet, the value of this offset is not well defined, often arbitrarily set, and rarely validated. Here, we propose the usage of satellite-derived land surface temperatures instead of surface air temperatures. 2 548 measurement points in 29 countries are compiled, revealing characteristic trends in the offset between shallow groundwater temperatures and land surface temperatures. Here it is shown that evapotranspiration and snow cover impact on this offset globally, through latent heat flow and insulation. Considering these two processes only, global shallow groundwater temperatures are estimated in a resolution of approximately 1 km × 1 km. When comparing these estimated groundwater temperatures with measured ones a coefficient of determination of 0.95 and a root mean square error of 1.4 K is found.

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Volltext §
DOI: 10.5445/IR/1000068740
DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/aa5fb0
Zitationen: 18
Web of Science
Zitationen: 14
Cover der Publikation
Zugehörige Institution(en) am KIT Institut für Angewandte Geowissenschaften (AGW)
Publikationstyp Zeitschriftenaufsatz
Publikationsmonat/-jahr 03.2017
Sprache Englisch
Identifikator ISSN: 1748-9318, 1748-9326
KITopen-ID: 1000068740
HGF-Programm 35.14.01 (POF III, LK 01)
Effiziente Nutzung geothermisch. Energie
Erschienen in Environmental research letters
Band 12
Heft 3
Seiten Art. Nr.: 034005
Bemerkung zur Veröffentlichung Gefördert durch den KIT-Publikationsfonds
Nachgewiesen in Web of Science
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