Publications and References

Primary reference:

Jeffrey, S.J., Carter, J.O., Moodie, K.B. and Beswick, A.R. (2001). Using spatial interpolation to construct a comprehensive archive of Australian climate data, Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol 16/4, pp 309-330. DOI: 10.1016/S1364-8152(01)00008-1.  Available online here.

 This is the primary reference for SILO. The paper describes the algorithms used in preparing SILO datasets, including a detailed analysis of the expected accuracy of the interpolated estimates. An update (PDF) describes the reduction in errors achieved by modifications to the interpolation algorithm.


 SILO metadata are available in the Queensland Spatial Catalogue.


  1. Beesley, C. A., Frost, A. J. and Zajaczkowski, J. (2009). A comparison of the BAWAP and SILO spatially interpolated daily rainfall datasets. 18th World IMACS / MODSIM Congress, Cairns, Australia 13-17 July 2009.  Available online here (PDF).
  2. Tozer, C. R., Kiem, A. S., and Verdon-Kidd, D. C. (2011). On the uncertainties associated with using gridded rainfall data as a proxy for observed, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., 8, 8399-8433. DOI:10.5194/hessd-8-8399-2011.  Available online here.

BoM Spatial Data

  1. Jones, D. A., Wang, W. and Fawcett, R. (2009). High-quality spatial climate data-sets for Australia, Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Journal 58 (2009) 233-248. Available online here (PDF).
  2. Frost, A. J., Ramchurn, A., and Smith, A. (2018). The Australian Landscape Water Balance model (AWRA-L v6). Technical Description of the Australian Water Resources Assessment Landscape model version 6. Bureau of Meteorology Technical Report. Available online here.


  1. Zajaczkowski, J., Wong, K., and Carter, J. (2013). Improved historical solar radiation gridded data for Australia, Environmental Modelling & Software, 49, 64–77. DOI: 10.1016/j.envsoft.2013.06.013.  Available online here.
  2. Rayner, D.P., Moodie, K.B., Beswick, A.R., Clarkson, N.M., and Hutchinson, R.L. (2004). New Australian daily historical climate surfaces using CLIMARC. Queensland Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Report QNRME04247.  Available online here (PDF).
  3. Carter, J.O., Flood, N.F., Danaher, T., Hugman, P., Young, R., Duncalfe, F., Barber, D., Flavel, R., Beeston, G., Mlodawski, G., Hart, D., Green, D., Richards, R., Dudgeon, G., Dance, R., Brock, D. and Petty, D. (1996). Development of data rasters for model inputs, In Development of a National Drought Alert Strategic Information System Volume 3. Final Report on QPI 20 to Land and Water Resources Research and Development Corporation.
  4. Hutchinson, M.F. (1995). Interpolating mean rainfall using thin plate smoothing splines, International Journal of Geographical Information Systems, 9, 385-403.  Available online here.
  5. Wahba, G. and Wendelberger, J. (1980). Some new mathematical methods for variational objective analysis using splines and cross validation, Monthly Weather Review, 108, 1122-1143.

Modelling evaporation and evapotranspiration

An overview of the evaporation and evapotranspiration data provided by SILO is available here.

  1. Allen, R.G., Pereira, L.S., Raes, D. and Smith M. (1998). Crop evapotranspiration - Guidelines for computing crop water requirements. FAO Irrigation and drainage Paper 56. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, p.300.
      This is the original paper for the calculation of FAO56 reference evapotranspiration.
  2. Gifford, R.M., ed (2005). Pan evaporation: An example of the detection and attribution of trends in climate variables. Proceedings of a workshop held at the Shine Dome, Australian Academy of Science, Canberra 22-23 November 2004. Available online here .
  3. Chiew, F. H. S., and McMahon, T.A. (1991). Applicability of Morton's and Penman's evapotranspiration estimates in rainfall-runoff modelling. Water Resources Bulletin, 27, 611-620.
       Chiew and McMahon compared Morton's wet environment evapotranspiration with Penman's potential evapotranspiration. The estimates are similar in wet conditions, but Morton's estimate is lower than Penman's in dry conditions.
  4. Doyle, P. (1990). Modelling catchment evaporation: an objective comparison of the Penman and Morton approaches . Journal of Hydrology, 121, 257-276.
  5. Granger, R.J., and Gray, D.M. (1990). Examination of Morton's CRAE model for estimating daily evaporation from field-sized areas. Journal of Hydrology, 120, 309-325.
       This paper discusses limitations in Morton’s method: 1) The use of a water transfer coefficient that is not dependent on wind results in overestimation in low wind conditions, and underestimation in high wind conditions; and 2) The calculation of albedo may lead to significant errors. It also shows that Morton's method may not be sufficiently accurate over short accumulation periods (e.g. 24 hours).
  6. Hobbins M.T., Ramirez J.A., Brown T.C. and Claessens L.H.J.M. (2001). The complementary relationship in estimation of regional evapotranspiration: The complementary relationship areal evapotranspiration and advection-aridity models. Water Resources Research, 1367-1387.
  7. Jensen, M.E., Burman, R.D. and Allen, R.G. 1990. Evapotranspiration and Irrigation Water Requirements . ASCE Manuals and Reports on Engineering Practice No. 70, Am. Soc. Civil Engr., New York, NY. 332 pp.
  8.  ASCE's Standardized Reference Evapotranspiration Equation, proceedings of the National Irrigation Symposium, Phoenix, Arizona, 2000. Available here (PDF).
  9. Morton, F. I. (1983a). Operational estimates of areal evapotranspiration and their significance to the science and practice of hydrology. Journal of Hydrology, 66, 1-76.
       This is the original paper for Morton's calculations including shallow lake evaporation.
  10. Morton, F. I. (1983b). Operational estimates of lake evaporation. Journal of Hydrology, 66, 77-100.
       This paper provides theories of evaporation over shallow lakes, deep lakes and ponds. The algorithm used by SILO for computing Morton's shallow lake evaporation is provided in Morton, F.I. (1983a).
  11. Morton, F.I. (1986). Practical estimates of lake evaporation. Journal of Climate and Applied Meteorology, 25, 371-387.
       This paper compares lake evaporation, pan evaporation and various other estimates under a range of conditions.
  12. Nash, J.E. (1989). Potential evaporation and "the complimentary relationship". Journal of Hydrology, 111, 1-7.
       This paper analyses the theoretical differences between the Morton and Penman approaches to calculating evapotranspiration.
  13. Rayner, D.P. (2005). Australian synthetic daily Class A pan evaporation. Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines. Technical Report.  Available here (PDF).
Last updated: 7 July 2021