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dc.contributor.authorFerreira, VG
dc.contributor.authorMontecino, HC
dc.contributor.authorNdehedehe, CE
dc.contributor.authorHeck, B
dc.contributor.authorGong, Z
dc.contributor.authorde Freitas, SRC
dc.contributor.authorWesterhaus, M
dc.description.abstractWidespread environmental impacts of frequent drought episodes in Brazil have resulted in several drought-related diagnostics studies. However, the potential of many “opportunistic sensors”, such as the Global Positioning System (GPS), has not yet been considered in hydrological hazard monitoring in Brazil. In this study, the response of the Earth's crust to Brazil's 2012–2015 drought event in different structural provinces is analyzed by comparing GPS-observed vertical crustal deformations (VCDs) with the terrestrial water storage (TWS) derived from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE). The results indicate that there is no spatial correlation between annual amplitudes of the TWS and VCDs in different structural provinces apart from the purely elastic response of the crust to TWS dynamics, at almost all the 39 GPS stations that were analyzed. However, approximately 15% of the monitoring stations show that VCD leads TWS with a phase lag of 2–4 months. Errors associated with VCD and TWS are within the accepted range for space geodetic techniques (i.e., GPS and GRACE) and despite the need for further investigation, the phase lead seems to be associated with rainfall, which impacts the TWS through the hydrographs. Overall, the GPS-based drought index (DIVCD) reflects the water depletion in many regions of Brazil, which agrees with the GRACE-based DITWS in terms of the Spearman correlation coefficient (ranging from 0.4 to 0.9) in the Amazon, Tocantins, La Plata, and São Francisco river basins. This agreement confirms the drought persistence during the study period and that DIVCD can be used to monitor hydrological droughts. In regions in which DITWS sufficiently agrees with DIVCD (48% of the sites), near real-time drought monitoring is feasible. This could be useful in the optimization of models for the forward prediction of drought events in other regions worldwide, where GPS vertical displacements strongly correlate with hydrological GRACE signals.
dc.relation.ispartofjournalScience of the Total Environment
dc.subject.fieldofresearchNatural Hazards
dc.titleSpace-based observations of crustal deflections for drought characterization in Brazil
dc.typeJournal article
dc.type.descriptionC1 - Articles
dc.type.codeC - Journal Articles
gro.hasfulltextNo Full Text
gro.griffith.authorNdehedehe, Christopher E.

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