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The cycling of energy, water and carbon through soil, vegetation and atmosphere influences the distribution and quality of life on Earth. With the rapid growth of the world population and its needs, the sustainable and efficient management of our natural resources becomes more important than ever. The TR32 focuses on a better understanding of the processes and interdependencies within and between soil, vegetation and the atmosphere, which will lead to more reliable weather and climate models and more accurate predictions for water and CO2 transport to support an improved management of natural resources. Spatial and temporal patterns in the soil-vegetation-atmosphere continuum are postulated to play a key role. For example, agricultural land-use - wheat next to beet, or potatoes and corn - influences the exchange of water, CO2 and heat between soil and atmosphere. All processes are inseparably intertwined, resulting in complex feedbacks and system responses on different spatial and temporal scales.

The overall goal of the TR32 is to clarify the origins of and the interrelations between spatial and temporal patterns of each single component within the soil-vegetation-atmosphere system using innovative monitoring and modelling approaches. Spatial and temporal structures of physical parameters (e.g., soil hydraulic conductivity) state variables (such as soil moisture or air temperature) and processes (for example fluxes of CO2, water and heat) can be observed on all scales. The detection of these patterns and the understanding of the interactions involved are required to represent the different spatial and temporal scales in numerical models.

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