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WWRC 83-01
Development of Evapotranspiration Crop Coefficients, Climatological Data, and Evapotranspiration Models for the Upper Green River in Wyoming


Introduction In the summer of 1982 negotiations began between the Agricultural Engineering Department, College of Engineering of the University of Wyoming, and the Wyoming Water Development Commission which led to a research project with the basic objective of developing an accurate method of calculating agricultural water consumption in the Green River Basin. A proposal was submitted by the Department on July 6, 1982. The proposal was accepted through a memorandum of agreement dated August 9, 1982. The project has been reviewed and accepted by the Commission for a second year's operation. The project is jointly funded by the Wyoming Water Development Commission and the University of Wyoming Water Research Center.

The research project has the following objectives. This report will address these objectives.

  1. To develop grass and alfalfa reference crop coefficients at Farson and Fontenelle, Wyoming.
  2. To develop grass and alfalfa reference crop coefficients and crop coefficients for mountain meadow grasses at Daniel, Wyoming.
  3. To collect solar radiation, wind, humidity, temperature, and precipitation from a network of seven sites in the Upper Green River Basin.
  4. To develop methods for transferring crop coefficients from location to location.
  5. To use existing ET models to estimate consumptive use of agriculture, reservoir, and phreatophyte use within the Upper Green River Basin.
  6. To develop a basin wide model for consumptive use.
  7. To obtain existing ET data applicable to the Upper Green River Basin.

Lysimeters were fabricated and partially installed in the fall of 1982. Automated weather stations were purchased and their operation de-bugged during the fall and winter of 1982-1983.

The installation of all lysimeters and weather stations was completed during the spring of 1983 and routine operations were established. Weather stations were located at or near Rock Springs, Farson, Daniel, Merna, Big Piney, Seedskadee, and Mountain View. Two lysimeters were installed at both Farson and Seedskadee. Ten lysimeters were installed on or very near the Horse Creek watershed. The weather stations and lysimeters are all located on land owned by cooperators. Figure 1 is a map of the Green River Basin in Wyoming and shows the locations of weather stations and lysimeters. (All figures and tables appear at the end of this report.)

This progress report will have sections dealing with the operation of weather stations and lysimeters. In addition, initial investigations dealing with statistical and physical methods of extending results to the whole Green River Basin from research sites will be discussed. Samples of data acquired will be shown and an example of methods of extending data will be shown.

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