Jiang, H; Yang, YP; Wang, HZ; Bai, YQ; Bai, Y (2020). Surface Diffuse Solar Radiation Determined by Reanalysis and Satellite over East Asia: Evaluation and Comparison. REMOTE SENSING, 12(9), 1387.

Recently, surface diffuse solar radiation (R-dif) has been attracting a growing interest in view of its function in improving plant productivity, thus promoting global carbon uptake, and its impacts on solar energy utilization. To date, very few radiation products provide estimates of R-dif, and systematic validation and evaluation are even more scare. In this study, R-dif estimates from Reanalysis Fifth Generation (ERA5) of European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts and satellite-based retrieval (called JiEA) are evaluated over East Asia using ground measurements at 39 stations from World Radiation Data Center (WRDC) and China Meteorological Administration (CMA). The results show that JiEA agrees well with measurements, while ERA5 underestimates R-dif significantly. Both datasets perform better at monthly mean scale than at daily mean and hourly scale. The mean bias error and root-mean-square error of daily mean estimates are -1.21 W/m(2) and 20.06 W/m(2) for JiEA and -17.18 W/m(2) and 32.42 W/m(2) for ERA5, respectively. Regardless of over- or underestimation, correlations of estimated time series of ERA5 and JiEA show high similarity. JiEA reveals a slight decreasing trend at regional scale, but ERA5 shows no significant trend, and neither of them reproduces temporal variability of ground measurements. Data accuracy of ERA5 is more robust than JiEA in time but less in space. Latitudinal dependency is noted for ERA5 while not for JiEA. In addition, spatial distributions of R-dif from ERA5 and JiEA show pronounced discrepancy. Neglect of adjacency effects caused by horizontal photon transport is the main cause for R-dif underestimation of ERA5. Spatial analysis calls for improvements to the representation of clouds, aerosols and water vapor for reproducing fine spatial distribution and seasonal variations of R-dif.