Possible self‐organizing dynamics for land‐atmosphere interaction Academic Article uri icon


  • Land-atmosphere interactions play a central role in the mesoscale evolution of hydrologic fields like rainfall and soil moisture. A water balance model, capturing the essence of such interaction and driven by mesoscale and synoptic processes, was found to self-organize into states showing global scaling features both in space and in time, which we also observed experimentally. Although driving synoptic mechanisms are crucial, a key role was found for the local dynamical rules through which the system self-organizes. The results suggest the possibility of a dynamic origin for the space-time scaling in precipitation from purely local dynamics and may have implications for modeling efforts which involve land-atmosphere interaction. Copyright 1998 by the American Geophysical Union.

author list (cited authors)

  • Rodríguez‐Iturbe, I., D'Odorico, P., & Rinaldo, A.

citation count

  • 18

publication date

  • September 1998