Himalayan Research Seminar on Monday 6th February

Dr Joe Shea, who is a Research Scientist at the U. of S. Centre for Hydrology and a
Visiting Scientist at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu, Nepal, will present a seminar titled Snow, Ice, Rivers, and Earthquakes: Himalayan Research and Life in Nepal on Monday, 6th February 2017.

The talk will describe Joe’s research experiences from 2012-2016, while working as a Research Scientist based at ICIMOD in Kathmandu.This included high mountain hydrological and meteorological monitoring, the pioneering use of unmanned aerial vehicles for glacier change detection, glacier modelling studies, and a major earthquake.

The seminar will take place at 3 p.m. on Monday 6th February, in 144 Kirk Hall.

CH Seminar, Coldwater Lab., Friday 16th May at 3pm

The Centre for Hydrology’s Coldwater Lab. is hosting a seminar by Dr Jessica Lundquist (Mountain Hydrology Research Group, University of Washington), titled Effects of climate on forest-snow interactions.

The talk will summarize recent research on forest cover / snowpack interactions around the world, review advances in measuring interception of snow in forest canopies, and introduce a new research project on forest-climate effects on snowcover in the US Pacific Northwest.

It takes place in the Main Lecture Theatre at the BGS Institute, Barrier Lake Field Station, Kananaskis, Alberta on Friday May 16, 2014 from 3-4pm.

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS – GEWEX Session on Hydrology of High-Elevation Areas

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS – Hydrology of High Elevation Areas Session at 7th International GEWEX Conference

Trending Now: Water
7th International Scientific Conference on the Global Energy and Water Cycle
The Hague, The Netherlands, 14-17 July 2014
Website: http://www.gewexevents.org

Abstract Deadline: 14 February 2014

The increasing demand for fresh water and the impacts of climate change on water availability and extreme events highlight why water is a current major global concern and is “Trending Now.” The Conference will celebrate 25 years of GEWEX research and set the stage for the next phase of research addressing the World Climate Research Programme Grand Challenges on water resources, extremes, and climate sensitivity through observations and data sets, their analyses, process studies, model development and exploitation, applications, technology transfer to operational results, and research capacity development and training for the next generation of scientists.

The Conference will include lead speakers in plenary sessions to provide synthesis and perspective, and an extensive set of parallel sessions to support detailed development of specialist themes. Papers are welcome for all parallel sessions, to be given either as oral presentations or posters.

Abstracts are invited for all topics, including: (1) the climate system; (2) land; and (3) atmosphere. For topic details, see http://gewex.org/2014conf/program.html.

Please consider submitting an abstract to the Hydrology of High Elevation Areas Session:
High mountains often receive relatively high precipitation volumes, which can quickly form runoff from rainfall, or are stored as snow and ice and form melt water when energy inputs are sufficient. This session will focus on advances in high mountain hydrology, including precipitation, process understanding, observational advances, model development and validation, applications, climate change impacts and projections of future snow and ice hydrology under a changing climate.
Conveners: John Pomeroy, Richard Essery, Ma Yaoming

Abstract Submission and Registration
The abstract deadline is 14 February 2014. Links to abstract submission and conference registration are available at: http://gewex.org/2014conf/home.html. Abstracts will be used to select presentations for poster and oral sessions. Only one abstract may be submitted per registrant. An abstract should have a minimum of 300 words with a maximum of 1000. There is a non-refundable 40 Euro fee for submitting an abstract. Notification of acceptance to authors is mid-March 2014. If you have any problems submitting an abstract or have questions about the Conference, please contact Shannon Macken at conference@gewex.org

CUAHSI Cyber Seminars on Snow

CUAHSI – The Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science (Inc.) – is running a series of online seminars focused on snow.

Friday 7th Feb.: Dr Matthew Sturm – Arctic Snow
Friday 14th Feb.: Dr Jeff Dozier, Dr Anne Nolin – Mountain snow
Friday 21st Feb.: Dr Tim Link – Forest snow
Friday 7th Mar.: Dr David Robinson – Snow extent

The talks will be presented online on at 3:00 pm Eastern Time – all are welcome!
More details, including instructions on how to connect, are available at http://www.cuahsi.org/2014cyberseminars.aspx

Seminar – 20 March, 2:30pm

The Centre for Hydrology will host a seminar by Dr Kevin Devito, of the University of Alberta’s Department of Biological Sciences, entitled Generalizing groundwater-surface water interactions in riparian interfaces on heterogeneous landscapes – Canada’ s Boreal Plain, on Wednesday 20 March at 2:30pm in Room 144 Kirk Hall.

Hydrology Seminar – Wednesday December 19th, 12:00noon

Dr Jean-Emmanuel Sicart, Researcher at the IRD, University of Grenoble, will present a seminar on
The Analysis of seasonal variations in energy fluxes and meltwater discharge of a Tropical high-altitude Glacier
On Wednesday 19th December, 2012, at 12noon in Room 146 of Kirk Hall.
The seminar will present a study of the atmospheric forcing that controls seasonal variations in the mass balance and in meltwater discharge of the tropical glacier Zongo, Bolivia (16°S, 6000-4900 m asl. 2.4 km²). The full abstract is available here.
This is a ‘brown bag lunch’ event, so please feel free to bring your lunch, and to pass this information on to others who might be interested.

Hydrology Seminar – Wednesday October 3rd, 11:30am

Dr Keith Musselman, Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Centre for Hydrology, will present a seminar entitled
Inter-annual snow accumulation and melt patterns in forested and alpine terrain;
a case study from the Sierra Nevada, California

On Wednesday October 3rd, 2012, at 11:30am, in AGRI 1E85
Results are presented from a study of snowpack dynamics in the southern Sierra Nevada, California. The study area covers 1800 km2 and a 3600 m elevation gradient. The accuracy of a distributed snow model is evaluated against a multi-scale suite of field measurements including a network of snow depth sensors, basin-scale manual surveys, and airborne LiDAR. In general, the model accurately simulated the seasonal maximum snow depth and SWE at lower and middle elevations. The model overestimated SWE at upper elevations where wind effects are pronounced and no precipitation measurements were available. The SWE errors were partially explained (R2 > 0.80, p<0.01) by the distance of the SWE measurement from the nearest precipitation gauge. The results suggest that precipitation uncertainty and wind redistribution are both critical limitations on snow model accuracy, particularly at upper elevations. Analyses of snowmelt patterns highlight distinct differences in melt dynamics at lower, middle, and upper elevations. Specifically, forested middle elevations experienced the most sustained snowmelt at relatively low seasonal average melt rates (~ 5 mm day-1). This unique melt timing and rate may be critical to the local forest ecosystem. Furthermore, the three years evaluated in this study indicate a marked sensitivity of this elevation range to seasonal meteorology, suggesting that it could be highly sensitive to future changes in climate.

Hydrology Seminar – Monday 16 July, 2pm

Dr Taufique Mahmood, of the Global Institute of Water Security and Centre for Hydrology, will present a seminar on
Hydrologic Spatial Patterns in a semiarid Ponderosa Pine hillslopes
on Monday 16 July, 2012, at 2:00pm, in Room 146 Kirk Hall
Ponderosa pine forests are a dominant land cover type in semiarid montane areas. Water supplies in major rivers of the southwestern United States depend on ponderosa pine forests as these ecosystems:
(1) receive a significant amount of rainfall and snowfall,
(2) intercept precipitation and transpire water, and
(3) indirectly influence runoff by impacting the infiltration rate.
However, the hydrologic patterns in these ecosystems with strong seasonality are poorly understood. In this study, we use a distributed hydrologic model to understand hydrologic patterns in a patchy ponderosa pine landscape. Our modeling effort is focused on the hydrologic responses during North American Monsoon (NAM) and winter to summer transitional period.
Our findings indicate that vegetation patterns primarily influence the hillslope hydrologic response during dry summer periods leading to patchiness related to the ponderosa pine stands. The spatial response patterns switch to fine-scale terrain curvature controls during persistently wet NAM periods. Thus, a climatic threshold involving rainfall and weather conditions during the NAM is identified in the hillslope response when sufficient lateral soil moisture fluxes are activated by high rainfall amounts and the lower evapotranspiration induced by cloud cover.
Our findings on the winter to summer transitional period indicate the importance of the relative wetness of each season. For a sequence with a wet winter and a dry summer, a robust snowpack results in abundant soil moisture in the hillslope that persists until the summer season when evapotranspiration consumes it. Under these conditions, the hillslope lateral transport becomes disconnected during the spring transition. We observe an opposite sequence of events when a dry winter is followed by a wet summer period. For each case, the spatial controls on hillslope hydrologic patterns are assessed relative to the terrain and vegetation distributions.
Results from this work have implications on the design of hillslope experiments, the resolution of hillslope scale models, and the prediction of hydrologic conditions in ponderosa pine landscapes. Further, the proposed methodology can be useful for predicting responses to climate and land cover changes that are anticipated for the southwestern United States.

Hydrology Seminar – Thursday 28 June, 10am

MSc candidate Chris Marsh will present a seminar on
Implications of mountain shading on calculating energy for snowmelt using unstructured triangular meshes

On Thursday June 28, 2012, at 10am, in 146 Kirk Hall
In many parts of the world, snowmelt energy is dominated by solar irradiance. This is the case in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, where clear skies dominate the winter and spring. In mountainous regions, solar irradiance at the snow surface is not only affected by solar angles, atmospheric transmittance, and the slope and aspect of immediate topography, but also by shadows from surrounding terrain. Accumulation of errors in estimating solar irradiation can lead to significant errors in calculating the timing and rate of snowmelt due to the seasonal storage of internal energy in the snowpack. Gridded methods are often used to estimate solar irradiance in complex terrain. These methods work best with high-resolution gridded digital elevation models (DEMs), such as those produced using LiDAR. However, such methods also introduce errors due to the rigid nature of the mesh, creating artefacts and other artificial problems. Unstructured triangular meshes, such as triangulated irregular networks, are more efficient in their use of DEM data than fixed grids when producing solar irradiance information for spatially distributed snowmelt calculations and they do not suffer from the artefact problems of a gridded DEM. This project demonstrates the use of a horizon-shading algorithm model with an unstructured mesh versus standard self-shading algorithms. A systematic over-prediction in irradiance is observed when only self-shadows are considered. This over-prediction can be equivalent to 20% of total pre-melt snow accumulation. The modelled results are diagnosed by comparison to measurements of mountain shadows by time-lapse digital cameras and solar irradiance by a network of radiometers in Marmot Creek Research Basin, Alberta, Canada.

Hydrology Seminar – Dr Jessica Lundquist, 10th April

Dr Jessica Lundquist, Associate Professor at the University of Washington, will speak on Cold Air Pools in Complex Terrain, on Tuesday April 10th at 2pm in Agri 2C71.
In complex terrain, air in contact with the ground becomes cooled from radiative energy loss on a calm clear night and, being denser than the free atmosphere at the same elevation, sinks to valley bottoms. Cold-air pooling (CAP) occurs where this cooled air collects on the landscape. We present an objective mapping algorithm for identifying cold-air pool locations and compare the results against distributed temperature measurements in Loch Vale, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado; in the Eastern Pyrenees, France; and in Yosemite National Park, Sierra Nevada, California. We then discuss the impacts of cold air pools on snow, hydrology, and ecology, both in the present day and under a changing climate.