Daily reference crop evapotranspiration with reduced data sets in the humid environments of Azores islands using estimates of actual vapor pressure, solar radiation, and wind speed
Reference crop evapotranspiration (ETo) estimations using the FAO Penman-Monteith equation (PM-ETo) require a set of weather data including maximum and minimum air temperatures (T max, T min), actual vapor pressure (e a), solar radiation (R s), and wind speed (u 2). However, those data are often not available, or data sets are incomplete due to missing values. A set of procedures were proposed in FAO56 (Allen et al. 1998) to overcome these limitations, and which accuracy for estimating daily ETo in the humid climate of Azores islands is assessed in this study. Results show that after locally and seasonally calibrating the temperature adjustment factor a d used for dew point temperature (T dew) computation from mean temperature, ETo estimations shown small bias and small RMSE ranging from 0.15 to 0.53 mm day−1. When R s data are missing, their estimation from the temperature difference (T max−T min), using a locally and seasonal calibrated radiation adjustment coefficient (k Rs), yielded highly accurate ETo estimates, with RMSE averaging 0.41 mm day−1 and ranging from 0.33 to 0.58 mm day−1. If wind speed observations are missing, the use of the default u 2 = 2 m s−1, or 3 m s−1 in case of weather measurements over clipped grass in airports, revealed appropriated even for the windy locations (u 2 > 4 m s−1), with RMSE < 0.36 mm day−1. The appropriateness of procedure to estimating the missing values of e a, R s, and u 2 was confirmed.