Penumbra : A Spatiotemporal Shade-Irradiance Analysis Tool with External Model Integration for Landscape Assessment, Habitat Enhancement, and Water Quality Improvement Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/kk91fn884

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  • Several solar energy models exist, but all models must balance: computational runtime, light complexity, and model output volume. These models span the spectrum of simplistic global solar energy equation sets to complex light ray-tracing models. Spatiotemporally inaccurate representations of solar energy may cause compounding simulation effects and introduce unknown modeling uncertainty. Within the current solar energy modeling spectrum was the need to advance large watershed area spatiotemporal irradiance modeling. A model utilizing methods simpler than ray-tracing that still accounted for the major environmental light reduction factors was needed. The model developed we called Penumbra. Penumbra provides solar energy reduction from topographic shadowing, forest shadowing, and cloud coverage at landscape scales. Penumbra was developed to function as a stand-alone model, but also be capable of integration within existing ecosystem models. Penumbra’s intended audience include ecosystem modelers, land owners, watershed councils, county, state, and federal entities; any group needing an enhanced understanding of how light energy impacts processes within their landscapes. The questions being asked by my intended audience regard riparian zone restoration, fish habitat restoration, and improved forest management. To address these questions, a well-functioning shade|irradiance model capable of assisting with multiyear landscape assessments was needed.
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