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Volume 10, issue 5
The Cryosphere, 10, 2453–2463, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-10-2453-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
The Cryosphere, 10, 2453–2463, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-10-2453-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 24 Oct 2016

Research article | 24 Oct 2016

Spatiotemporal dynamics of snow cover based on multi-source remote sensing data in China

Xiaodong Huang1, Jie Deng1, Xiaofang Ma1, Yunlong Wang1, Qisheng Feng1, Xiaohua Hao2, and Tiangang Liang1 Xiaodong Huang et al.
  • 1Key Laboratory of Grassland Agro-Ecology System, College of Pastoral Agriculture Science and Technology, Lanzhou University, 730020 Lanzhou, China
  • 2Chinese Academy of Sciences, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, 730000 Lanzhou, China

Abstract. By combining optical remote sensing snow cover products with passive microwave remote sensing snow depth (SD) data, we produced a MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) cloudless binary snow cover product and a 500 m snow depth product. The temporal and spatial variations of snow cover from December 2000 to November 2014 in China were analyzed. The results indicate that, over the past 14 years, (1) the mean snow-covered area (SCA) in China was 11.3 % annually and 27 % in the winter season, with the mean SCA decreasing in summer and winter seasons, increasing in spring and fall seasons, and not much change annually; (2) the snow-covered days (SCDs) showed an increase in winter, spring, and fall, and annually, whereas they showed a decrease in summer; (3) the average SD decreased in winter, summer, and fall, while it increased in spring and annually; (4) the spatial distributions of SD and SCD were highly correlated seasonally and annually; and (5) the regional differences in the variation of snow cover in China were significant. Overall, the SCD and SD increased significantly in south and northeast China, and decreased significantly in the north of Xinjiang province. The SCD and SD increased on the southwest edge and in the southeast part of the Tibetan Plateau, whereas it decreased in the north and northwest regions.

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Short summary
Integrated snow products were used to analyze the temporal and spatial variation of the snow cover in China during 2000–2014. The results indicated that the overall annual number of snow-covered days and average snow depth in China have increased in the past 14 years, but differences in the snow cover variation in China were significant. Overall, the snow cover increased significantly in south and northeast China, but decreased significantly in Xinjiang and the Tibetan Plateau.
Integrated snow products were used to analyze the temporal and spatial variation of the snow...
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