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Plant’net – State of the Art | Michael Spratt

Plant’net – State of the Art

Plant’net – State of the Art

Reference evapotranspiration is calculated from alternative sets of inputs and for different canopies, conditions and time steps, using one-dimensional equations based on aerodynamic theory and energy balance, as in the following tables.

Actual vapor pressure
This is a good tool site. Tools for Agro-Meteorology and Biophysical Modelling

CLIMA is a Windows application which allows the generation and estimation of daily and hourly values of weather and weather related variables using several alternate models. CLIMA was built following the component-oriented paradigm and it is an example of re-use of components like EvapoTranspiration. The component architecture allows both for components extensibility autonomously by third parties and for their re-use in custom developed applications. CLIMA allows building ad-hoc libraries composing strategies made available via components, and save them as discrete software units (DLL) which can be used by CLIMA itself for data generation and re-used in custom developed applications developed autonomously by third parties.

The RadEst program allows evaluating daily global solar radiation values for a location at a given latitude, and it allows estimating daily values. Four models are available to estimate daily radiation from air temperature data; they include and are all derived from the model proposed by Bristow and Campbell

CropSyst is a is a user-friendly, conceptually simple but sound multi-year multi-crop daily time step simulation model. The model has been developed to serve as an analytic tool to study the effect of cropping systems management on productivity and the environment. The model simulates the soil water budget, soil-plant nitrogen budget, crop canopy and root growth, dry matter production, yield, residue production and decomposition, and erosion. Management options include: cultivar selection, crop rotation (including fallow years), irrigation, nitrogen fertilization, tillage operations (over 80 options), and residue management.

— http://agsys.cra-cin.it/tools/default.aspx

SOILPAR 2.00 is a Win 9x/2000 program to estimate soil physical and hydrological parameters using different methods. Hydrological parameters can be estimated from a various number of commonly available soil parameters (according to the method of estimate) such as soil texture, organic carbon, soil pH, and cation exchange capacity. Different methods allow estimating hydrological parameters using either point or function pedotransfers. The characteristic matrix potential/soil water content curve can also be estimated. The programs allows converting different textural classes. A geo-referenced soil database is maintained, including soil profile information, measured and estimated data. Soil profile sites can be visualized on a ArcView/ArcInfo shape file. A backup/restore utility is implemented, and database import/export utilities allow exchanging data with other SOILPAR installations. Soil profiles can be imported/exported using CropSyst SIL format. Methods can be tested and the relevant statistic is produced. The results of the statistical analysis, as well as the couples of measured and estimated values, can be exported to a multi-sheets Excel file.

WeatherFile is a utility to convert weather files of different formats. The variables stored can have different units. Input files must be ASCII files, and the constraint imposed is that one output record will be created from an input record. The program allows creating: 1) multiple files from a single, multi-year file, 2) single files from single files, and 3) a single, multi-year file from several input files. Files can be renamed in a number of ways, using fixed characters, characters from the input file, and characters from the input records. At most two conversion factors can be selected for each variable, and new conversion factors can be saved in the units list. For each output variable the output format can be defined by selecting the number of integers, leading zeroes, and decimals. The day of the yar can also be added if missing from the original file. When the options are selected, their settings can be saved as a driver. Missing data can be detected by indicating a user chosen value. A simple quality control can be performed by defining for each variable a range. Long term daily means can be stored as a location file, and their value can be used to replace missing/out of range data.

WARM (Water Accounting Rice Model, Confalonieri et al., 2005a, 2007; Acutis et al., 2006; Confalonieri, 2006) is a user-friendly, simplified daily time step model for simulation of growth and development of paddy rice crops. The model accounts for all the main processes which characterize this peculiar system in a balanced way. The software has a modular structure, thus including independently developed components formalizing the knowledge in specific fields of rice and/or modelling research. A suite of tools is supplied to support analysis of various type such as model evaluation (Bellocchi et al., 2006), sensitivity/uncertainty analysis (Confalonieri et al., 2006), and parameter calibration (Acutis and Confalonieri, 2006). The model is meant to serve as an analytic tool to study rice development and productivity under alternative conditions. It simulates the occurrence of phenology events, leaf evolution and biomass growth. The model is written in Visual Basic.

CRA.Core.IO is a component to perform I/O operations to/from a .NET DataSet. It allows reading from various formats (currently: XML, Xls, and a proprietary binary format), and it allows writing from a DataSet object to the same formats. The binary format is made available to maximize space allocation for large amounts of data; there are also advantages in terms of time required. The component is used by various application developed at CRA (APES, http://www.apesimulator.org; GDD, http://agsys.cra-cin.it/tools/).

The CRA.Core.Preconditions assembly is a .NET 2.0 (Java version available) component developed to make numeric tests of pre- and post-conditions having as main target software components implementing agro-ecological models. Pre-conditions and post-conditions are not only useful, when tested, to get all the advantages of the design-by-contract approach, but they are also an essential part of model documentation. Furthermore, the explicit definition of pre-conditions and post-conditions is of great help during the development of agro-ecological model components; in fact, it allows the programmer to more easily define unit tests by narrowing the ranges of inputs and outputs to be tested. A top requirement for the design of this component was to make its use in clients as simple as possible. The component provides some options for showing/storing tests results (screen, txt file, XML file, client defined listeners), but its design also allows clients to easily define custom outputs drivers without requiring re-compilation. The component also exposes three public interfaces (IDomainClass, IVarInfoClass, IStrategy) which can be used to develop re-usable components implementing agro-ecological models. An earlier version of this component was used to implement test of pre- post-conditions and implementing the three interfaces above in components implementing biophysical models.

Wind is a component containing models to generate long-term series of wind speed values using parameters from existing wind speed records. Generating mean daily wind speed involves stochastic processes, followed by estimation of maximum and minimum wind speed for each day. Alternative stochastic approaches are available to random generation of hourly wind speed. Options to generate hourly data by means of wave equations are also allowed to describe cyclic diurnal variation of wind speed.

The component implements the test of pre-conditions and post-conditions for each of the models provided, allowing an input to screen, TXT or XML file, and to .NET listeners. Custom output drivers can also be developed. Moreover, data sets used to perform unit tests on each of the models made available is also provided as part of this documentation.

The component can be freely used and distributed by modelers and developers in their own applications, if the application contains either a dedicated menu item or a dedicated button calling the Info() method of the component, and links to the original help file. This method displays information about the component and a button which activates the help of the component (examples of how to do this are shown in the sample applications provided to illustrate the use of the component). The component design allows for extensions by the users that can add easily their own models without requiring the re-compilation of Wind. Sample clients are provided inclusive of source code to demonstrate how to add models, and to build a Win .NET application. A sample web service and a sample web application are available on line as further examples of possible use of the component.

The SoilW component offers a wide range of alternative methods to perform the simulation. It allows the estimation of its parameters and can check data quality in simulation models, testing pre and post condition, using the component “CRA.Core.Precondition”. The full description of the algorithms available is given here, with a summary description of algorithms under implementation. The SoilW component, which can also be deployed independently for use other than in the Seamless framework, shows the following features: 1) capability to extend models by adding new ones without recompiling the component and still using the same call, 2) test of pre- and post-conditions 3) (under implementation) xml files to save the configurations of the component. Component-oriented programming, that encapsulates the solution of modelling problems into a discrete, replaceable and interchangeable software unit (component), was used to define the water component design. The architecture of this component has been focused on ease of maintenance, reuse, interchange ability and extensibility of software developed. The component has been developed using C# in the .NET platform of Windows. The SoilW component has the purpose of simulating the water dynamics in the soil. This component simulates: 1) Water redistribution among the soil layers – the changes of soil water content and fluxes among layers are provided in the output (flux out of the bottom layer is percolation); cascading (tipping-bucket) or finite difference methods are available. 2) Effective plant transpiration; several options are available. 3) Soil evaporation; several options are available. 4) Drained water if pipe drains are present (under development). 5) Effects of soil tillage and subsequent settling on hydrological properties of the soil (field capacity, wilting point, retention functions, conductivity functions, bulk density). The component does not simulate water infiltration. Input water is assumed to be net rain, able to infiltrate the soil. No attempt to compute runoff, plant and mulch interception is done here. To obtain net infiltration it is possible to use the SoilRE component (from University of Milan) that estimates runoff and plant interception. The component can be freely used and distributed by modeller and developers in their own applications. The component can be used in code developed using any programming language (VB.NET, C#, C++). The component design allows for expansions by the users that can add easily their own models.

Solar radiation is a component containing models to calculate daily and hourly values of extra-terrestrial and ground-level global solar radiation. The latter is both generated using stochastic approaches or estimated by means of physical relationships between solar radiation and other weather variables (i.e. air temperature, sunshine duration, cloud cover). Clear sky transmissivity is estimated according to alternative approaches. Provisions are supplied to have ground-level global solar radiation partitioned into direct, diffuse, and reflected components. Methods to estimate daily and hourly photosynthetically active radiation, both as lumped and partitioned by beam and diffuse components, are also provided. Finally, methods are also implemented to extract slope and aspect angles from elevation data. An overall diagram of the set of methods implemented is included. The component implements the test of pre-conditions and post-conditions for each of the models provided, allowing an input on screen, TXT or XML file, and .NET listeners; custom output drivers can also be developed. Moreover, data sets used to perform unit tests on each of the models made available are also provided as part of this documentation. The component can be freely used and distributed by modellers and developers in their own applications, if the application contains either a dedicated menu item or a dedicated button calling the info() method of the component, and links to the original help file. This method displays information about the component and a button which activates the help of the component (examples of how to do this are shown in the sample applications provided to illustrate the use of the component). The component can be used in code developed using any Windows or Linux programming language (VB.NET, C#, C++: C# version; the COM version made available as prototype prior to this release is neither supported nor updated). The component design allows for extensions by third parties that can add easily their own models. Two sample clients are provided inclusive of source code to demonstrate how to add models and to build a Win .NET application. A sample web service and a sample web application are available on line as further examples of possible use of the component.

Rain is a cross-platform component containing routines to generate long-term series of precipitation values using parameters from existing daily or monthly precipitation records. Precipitation includes the amount of rainfall and snowfall. If the mean air temperature of the day is below freezing, all of the generated precipitation is regarded as snow, otherwise all of the precipitation is rain. Alternative approaches are available to generate daily precipitation data, all of them assessing the likelihood of both the occurrence of precipitation on a particular day as well as the daily amount. Options for generating storm duration or breakpoint precipitation in either 360- 180-, 90-, 60-, 30- or 10-minute intervals are also available via sub-daily generation methods. The component implements the test of pre-conditions and post-conditions for each of the models provided, allowing an input on screen, TXT or XML file, and on .NET listeners; custom output drivers can also be developed. Moreover, data sets used to perform unit tests on each of the models made available is also provided as part of this documentation. The component can be freely used and distributed by modellers and developers in their own applications, if the application contains either a dedicated menu item or a dedicated button calling the info() method of the component, and links to the original help file. This method displays information about the component and a button which activates the help of the component (examples of how to do this are shown in the sample applications provided to illustrate the use of the component). The component can be used in code developed for Windows (VB.NET, C#, C++: C# version). The component design allows for extensions by the users that can add easily their own models. Sample clients are provided inclusive of source code to demonstrate how to add models, and to build a Win .NET application. Sample web service and a sample web application are available on line as further examples of possible use of the component.