Climate Dynamics

, Volume 51, Issue 9–10, pp 3311–3331 | Cite as

Evaluation of precipitation trends from high-resolution satellite precipitation products over Mainland China

  • Fengrui ChenEmail author
  • Yongqi Gao


Many studies have reported the excellent ability of high-resolution satellite precipitation products (0.25° or finer) to capture the spatial distribution of precipitation. However, it is not known whether the precipitation trends derived from them are reliable. For the first time, we have evaluated the annual and seasonal precipitation trends from two typical sources of high-resolution satellite-gauge products, TRMM 3B43 and PERSIANN-CDR, using rain gauge observations over China, and they were also compared with those from gauge-only products (0.25° and 0.5° precipitation products, hereafter called CN25 and CN50). The evaluation focused mainly on the magnitude, significance, sign, and relative order of the precipitation trends, and was conducted at gridded and regional scales. The following results were obtained: (1) at the gridded scale, neither satellite-gauge products precisely measure the magnitude of precipitation trends but they do reproduce their sign and relative order; regarding capturing the significance of trends, they exhibit relatively acceptable performance only over regions with a sufficient amount of significant precipitation trends; (2) at the regional scale, both satellite-gauge products generally provide reliable precipitation trends, although they do not reproduce the magnitude of trends in winter precipitation; and (3) overall, CN50 and TRMM 3B43 outperform others in reproducing all four aspects of the precipitation trends. Compared with CN25, PERSIANN-CDR performs better in determining the magnitude of precipitation trends but marginally worse in reproducing their sign and relative order; moreover, both of them are at a level in capturing the significance of precipitation trends.


Precipitation trends TRMM PERSIANN Satellite-gauge precipitation data 



This study was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant no. 41401503, the Innovative Research Team in University of Henan Provinces under Grant No. 16IRTSTHN012, the NordForsk-funded Project GREENICE (61841): Impacts of Sea-Ice and Snow-Cover Changes on Climate, Green Growth, and Society, and the China Scholarship Council.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Collaborative Innovation Center of Yellow River CivilizationHenan UniversityKaifengPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Geospatial Technology for the Middle and Lower Yellow River Regions, Ministry of EducationHenan UniversityKaifengPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center/Bjerknes Center for Climate ResearchBergenNorway
  4. 4.Nansen-Zhu International Research Center, Institute of Atmospheric PhysicsChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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