Calibrating soybean parameters in JULES 5.0 from the US-Ne2/3 FLUXNET sites and the SoyFACE-O3 experiment

Felix Leung, Karina Williams, Stephen Sitch, Amos P.K. Tai, Andy Wiltshire, Jemma Gornall, Elizabeth A. Ainsworth, Timothy Arkebauer, David Scoby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tropospheric ozone (O3) is the third most important anthropogenic greenhouse gas. O3 is detrimental to plant productivity, and it has a significant impact on crop yield. Currently, the Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES) land surface model includes a representation of global crops (JULES-crop) but does not have crop-specific O3 damage parameters and applies default C3 grass O3 parameters for soybean that underestimate O3 damage. Physiological parameters for O3 damage in soybean in JULES-crop were calibrated against leaf gas-exchange measurements from the Soybean Free Air Concentration Enrichment (SoyFACE) with O3 experiment in Illinois, USA. Other plant parameters were calibrated using an extensive array of soybean observations such as crop height and leaf carbon and meteorological data from FLUXNET sites near Mead, Nebraska, USA. The yield, aboveground carbon, and leaf area index (LAI) of soybean from the SoyFACE experiment were used to evaluate the newly calibrated parameters. The result shows good performance for yield, with the modelled yield being within the spread of the SoyFACE observations. Although JULES-crop is able to reproduce observed LAI seasonality, its magnitude is underestimated. The newly calibrated version of JULES will be applied regionally and globally in future JULES simulations. This study helps to build a state-of-the-art impact assessment model and contribute to a more complete understanding of the impacts of climate change on food production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6201-6213
Number of pages13
JournalGeoscientific Model Development
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 7 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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