Globally, soil organic matter (SOM) contains more than three times as much carbon as either the atmosphere or terrestrial vegetation. Yet it remains largely unknown why some SOM persists for millennia whereas other SOM decomposes readily—and this limits our ability to predict how soils will respond to climate change. Recent analytical and experimental advances have… More

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Measured surface-atmosphere fluxes of energy (sensible heat, H, and latent heat, LE) and CO2 (FCO2) represent the “true” flux plus or minus potential random and systematic measurement errors. Here, we use data from seven sites in the AmeriFlux network, including five forested sites (two of which include “tall tower” instrumentation), one grassland site, and one… More

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Ecosystem fluxes of energy, water, and CO2 result in spatial and temporal variations in atmospheric properties. In principle, these variations can be used to quantify the fluxes through inverse modelling of atmospheric transport, and can improve the understanding of processes and falsifiability of models. We investigated the influence of ecosystem fluxes on atmospheric CO2 in… More

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Turbulent fluxes of carbon, water vapor, and temperature were continuously measured above an upland forest in north central Wisconsin during 1999 and 2000 using the eddy covariance method. Maple (Acer saccharum), basswood (Tilia americana), and green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) species found in this forest also comprise a substantial portion of the landscape in the northern… More

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Simulating the magnitude and variability of terrestrial methane sources and sinks poses a challenge to ecosystem models because the biophysical and biogeochemical processes that lead to methane emissions from terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems are, by their nature, episodic and spatially disjunct. As a consequence, model predictions of regional methane emissions based on field campaigns from… More

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A reliable and precise in situ CO2 and CO analysis system has been developed and deployed at eight sites in the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory’s (ESRL) Global Greenhouse Gas Reference Network. The network uses very tall (> 300 m) television and radio transmitter towers that provide a convenient platform for mid-boundary-layer trace-gas sampling. Each… More

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Recent studies have established that atmospheric water vapor fields exhibit spatial spectra that take the form of power laws and hence can be compactly characterized by scaling exponents. The power law scaling exponents have been shown to exhibit substantial vertical variability. In this work, Taylor’s frozen turbulence hypothesis is used to infer the first-order spatial… More

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The climate sensitivity of plant seasonal life cycles, or phenology, may impart significant carbon cycle feedbacks on climatic change. Analysis of interannual ecosystem carbon exchange provides one way to assess this climate sensitivity. Multiyear eddy covariance carbon dioxide flux observations from five different ecosystems (deciduous forest, northern hardwood mixed forest, old-growth forest, shrub wetland, and… More

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We present the annual patterns of net ecosystem-atmosphere exchange (NEE) of CO2 and H2O observed from a 447 m tall tower sited within a mixed forest in northern Wisconsin, USA. The methodology for determining NEE from eddy-covariance flux measurements at 30, 122 and 396 m above the ground, and from CO2 mixing ratio measurements at 11, 30,… More

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