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We plan to use a variety of field observations collected from different platforms along with numerical modeling to address the five scientific questions listed earlier in the text.  We will conduct a field campaign to procure the required observations.  The field campaign will consist of a one year extended observation period and two three-week periods of intensive observations. Surface energy measurement instrumentation will be deployed on the two sides of the bunny fence throughout the extended observation period.  During this phase, in addition to regular observations taken by the Australian Meteorological Bureau (AMB), we will acquire temperature, humidity, pressure, soil temperature, soil moisture and precipitation measurements from a network of agricultural meteorology stations distributed through the study region.  The extended phase of the field campaign is expected to start in December of 2005 and end in November of 2006.  The intensive field campaigns, during which coordinated observations will be made using the mobile GLASS systems and the research aircraft, are intended to be three-week periods, one during August-September of 2006 and another in December of 2005.  During the summer month of December the agricultural areas are bare after harvest, while winter months of August-Spetember is the peak growing season for the agricultural crops.  The intensive field campaigns are thus designed to sample the atmospheric thermodynamics and circulation patterns for extreme conditions of contrast between surface vegetation on the either surface of the bunny fence.  However, note that even though the fractional vegetation cover on the either sides of the fence is relatively similar during the winter season, surface energy budgets are still expected to be different, since agricultural crops and native vegetation have varied transpirational characteristics.  The use of the NCAR GLASS systems is for the intensive phases of the field campaign.

The observations from a pair of mobile GLASS systems will be used to simultaneously sample thermodynamic and wind profiles on the two sides of the bunny fence.  The two potential sites for deployment of the mobile GLASS systems (and other platforms) are in the vicinity of the Lake King (33.01S, 119.176E) and Frank Hann national park (33.2S, 120.2E) areas.  The nearby Lake King airstrip allows for convenient deployment of the aircraft in this area.  We will use the SERA Small Environmental Research Aircraft (SERA) of Airborne Research Australia during the intensive phase of the field campaigns for spatial sampling of atmosphere and surface soil moisture. The aircraft has full instrumentation to measure wind, temperature and turbulent fluxes, sampling at a rate of approximately 50Hz.  In addition, instrumentation is available for remotely sensing the soil moisture.  The SERA platform will be used to directly observe the structure of the mesoscale circulation.  A typical flight pattern used for this purpose will consist of vertical ascents and descents from close to surface to well above cloud tops over both land-use areas with connecting horizontal traverses between two areas in a large 50 km box pattern and vertical stacks of horizontal traverses covering the boundary layer within the box to determine surface fluxes.  Meteorological measurements along with observations of turbulent energy fluxes will be used examine the three-dimensional structure of the mesoscale circulations in the vicinity of the bunny fence. 

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