Terrestrial Water Storage Anomalies

Terrestrial Water Storage (TWS) variability as observed by GRACE/GRACE-FO is an integrated signal from a number of different processes. The following individual components are provided as gridded Level-3 TWS product (available at ISDC for GFZ and COST-G ) and are displayed in the map on the left:

GRACE: Water Storage
Water mass anomalies expressed in terms of equivalent water height from all water storage compartments including snow, surface water, soil moisture, and deep groundwater; not corrected for spatial leakage.

GRACE: Water Storage Uncertainty
Time-variable component of the uncertainty estimate for the GRACE-based water storage variability, given as standard deviation per grid point.

GRACE: Spatial Leakage
Terrestrial water storage variations likely caused by spatial leakage; intended as optional correction for the water storage component.

Model: Atmospheric Mass
Atmospheric mass variability as represented in the non-tidal de-aliasing model AOD1B expressed in terms of equivalent water height.

Globally averaged values as well as averages over predefined regions (click on the map to select a region) of these components are displayed in the time series plot below. Two types of predefined regions are available: river basins or climatically similar regions, i.e., regions with similar precipitation properties. Note that for the TWS uncertainty estimates, these values are not simply derived from the grid point uncertainties but modelled according to Boergens et al. (2020); corresponding uncertainties are only available for river basins and thus set to zero on purpose for the global average. The basin-averaged time series are provided as CSV files (see download link above plot).

Further information on the applied processing scheme and data products is available here as technical note.

Boergens, E., Dobslaw, H., Dill, R., Thomas, M., Dahle, C., Murböck, M., Flechtner, F., 2020:
Modelling spatial covariances for terrestrial water storage variations verified with synthetic GRACE-FO data
International Journal on Geomathematics 11, 24, https://doi.org/10.1007/s13137-020-00160-0


The processing of the terrestrial water storage data is supported by the G3P project, which received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement nº 870353.

Contact: Eva Boergens (boergens (at) gfz-potsdam.de)