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Verdin A.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder | Rajagopalan B.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder | Funk C.,U.S. Geological Survey
Water Resources Research | Year: 2015

Drought and flood management practices require accurate estimates of precipitation. Gauge observations, however, are often sparse in regions with complicated terrain, clustered in valleys, and of poor quality. Consequently, the spatial extent of wet events is poorly represented. Satellite-derived precipitation data are an attractive alternative, though they tend to underestimate the magnitude of wet events due to their dependency on retrieval algorithms and the indirect relationship between satellite infrared observations and precipitation intensities. Here we offer a Bayesian kriging approach for blending precipitation gauge data and the Climate Hazards Group Infrared Precipitation satellite-derived precipitation estimates for Central America, Colombia, and Venezuela. First, the gauge observations are modeled as a linear function of satellite-derived estimates and any number of other variables-for this research we include elevation. Prior distributions are defined for all model parameters and the posterior distributions are obtained simultaneously via Markov chain Monte Carlo sampling. The posterior distributions of these parameters are required for spatial estimation, and thus are obtained prior to implementing the spatial kriging model. This functional framework is applied to model parameters obtained by sampling from the posterior distributions, and the residuals of the linear model are subject to a spatial kriging model. Consequently, the posterior distributions and uncertainties of the blended precipitation estimates are obtained. We demonstrate this method by applying it to pentadal and monthly total precipitation fields during 2009. The model's performance and its inherent ability to capture wet events are investigated. We show that this blending method significantly improves upon the satellite-derived estimates and is also competitive in its ability to represent wet events. This procedure also provides a means to estimate a full conditional distribution of the "true" observed precipitation value at each grid cell. © 2015 American Geophysical Union. Source

Birdsell D.T.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder | Rajaram H.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder | Viswanathan H.S.,Earth and Environmental science DivisionLos Alamos National LaboratoryLos Alamos
Water Resources Research | Year: 2015

Understanding the transport of hydraulic fracturing (HF) fluid that is injected into the deep subsurface for shale gas extraction is important to ensure that shallow drinking water aquifers are not contaminated. Topographically driven flow, overpressured shale reservoirs, permeable pathways such as faults or leaky wellbores, the increased formation pressure due to HF fluid injection, and the density contrast of the HF fluid to the surrounding brine can encourage upward HF fluid migration. In contrast, the very low shale permeability and capillary imbibition of water into partially saturated shale may sequester much of the HF fluid, and well production will remove HF fluid from the subsurface. We review the literature on important aspects of HF fluid migration. Single-phase flow and transport simulations are performed to quantify how much HF fluid is removed via the wellbore with flowback and produced water, how much reaches overlying aquifers, and how much is permanently sequestered by capillary imbibition, which is treated as a sink term based on a semianalytical, one-dimensional solution for two-phase flow. These simulations include all of the important aspects of HF fluid migration identified in the literature review and are performed in five stages to faithfully represent the typical operation of a hydraulically fractured well. No fracturing fluid reaches the aquifer without a permeable pathway. In the presence of a permeable pathway, 10 times more fracturing fluid reaches the aquifer if well production and capillary imbibition are not included in the model. © 2015. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved. Source

Montanari A.,Environmental | Bloschl G.,Vienna University of Technology | Cai X.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign | Rajaram H.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder | Sander G.,Loughborough University
Water Resources Research | Year: 2015

During 2014 Water Resources Research benefited from the voluntary effort of 2103 reviewers. Their constructive and professional effort was instrumental for publishing high-quality contributions thereby supporting the development of our knowledge of water resources. The contribution of the reviewers is instrumental to science for reaching the target of benefiting humanity. Editors and Associate Editors of Water Resources Research are grateful to the reviewers for their talented, unselfish, and continuous support to the journal. © 2015. American Geophysical Union. Source

Bloschl G.,Institute for Hydraulic Engineering and Water ResourcesVienna University of TechnologyVienna Austria | Cai X.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign | Scott Mackay D.,State University of New York at Buffalo | Rajaram H.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder
Water Resources Research | Year: 2016

On behalf of the journal, AGU, and the scientific community, the editors would like to sincerely thank those who reviewed manuscripts for Water Resources Research in 2015. The hours reading and commenting on manuscripts not only improves the manuscripts themselves but it also increases the scientific rigor of future research in the field. Many of those listed below went beyond and reviewed three or more manuscripts for our journal, and those are indicated in italics. The refereeing contributions they made contributed to 3622 individual reviews of 1434 manuscripts. Thank you again. We look forward to a 2016 of exciting advances in the field and communicating those advances to our community and to the broader public. © 2016. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved. Source

Neupauer R.M.,Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulder
Water Resources Research | Year: 2016

The forward Fractional Advection Dispersion Equation (FADE) provides a useful model for non-Fickian transport in heterogeneous porous media. The space FADE captures the long leading tail, skewness, and fast spreading typically seen in concentration profiles from field data. This paper develops the corresponding backward FADE model, to identify source location and release time. The backward method is developed from the theory of inverse problems, and then explained from a stochastic point of view. The resultant backward FADE differs significantly from the traditional backward Advection Dispersion Equation (ADE) because the fractional derivative is not self-adjoint and the probability density function for backward locations is highly skewed. Finally, the method is validated using tracer data from a well-known field experiment, where the peak of the backward FADE curve predicts source release time, while the median or a range of percentiles can be used to determine the most likely source location for the observed plume. The backward ADE cannot reliably identify the source in this application, since the forward ADE does not provide an adequate fit to the concentration data. © 2016. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved. Source

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