Lorite, I. J. and García Vila, M. and Santos, C. and Ruiz Ramos, Margarita and Fereres, Elias
AquaData and AquaGIS: Two computer utilities for temporal and spatial simulations of water-limited yield with AquaCrop..
"Computers and Electronics in Agriculture"
The crop simulation model AquaCrop, recently developed by FAO can be used for a wide range of purposes. However, in its present form, its use over large areas or for applications that require a large number of simulations runs (e.g., long-term analysis), is not practical without developing software to facilitate such applications. Two tools for managing the inputs and outputs of AquaCrop, named AquaData and AquaGIS, have been developed for this purpose and are presented here. Both software utilities have been programmed in Delphi v. 5 and in addition, AquaGIS requires the Geographic Information System (GIS) programming tool MapObjects. These utilities allow the efficient management of input and output files, along with a GIS module to develop spatial analysis and effect spatial visualization of the results, facilitating knowledge dissemination. A sample of application of the utilities is given here, as an AquaCrop simulation analysis of impact of climate change on wheat yield in Southern Spain, which requires extensive input data preparation and output processing. The use of AquaCrop without the two utilities would have required approximately 1000 h of work, while the utilization of AquaData and AquaGIS reduced that time by more than 99%. Furthermore, the use of GIS, made it possible to perform a spatial analysis of the results, thus providing a new option to extend the use of the AquaCrop model to scales requiring spatial and temporal analyses.