Assessment of DSSAT and AquaCrop models to simulate soybean and maize yield under water stress conditions

Keywords: CERES-Maize, CROPGRO-Soybean, crop growth models, crop yield, Kermanshah, soil moisture


Aim of study: To evaluate the performance of DSSAT and AquaCrop models in the estimation of soybean and grain maize yield under water stress conditions in a semi-arid region.

Area of study: Kermanshah, Iran.

Material and methods: AquaCrop and DSSAT were assessed to simulate soybean and maize. Both models were calibrated using field data. Field experiments were performed in a randomized complete block design with eight and four irrigation treatments for soybeans and maize, respectively with three replications. Measures of Normalized Root Mean Square Error (nRMSE) and Nash-Sutcliffe Model Efficiency were used to evaluate the accuracy of the models. For this purpose, simulated values of leaf area index / green crop canopy, grain yield, biomass, and soil moisture were compared with measured data.

Main results: Results indicated that the CROPGRO-Soybean in DSSAT software simulated more accurate crop growth of soybean than AquaCrop. The average nRMSE of the DSSAT model for estimating soil moisture, leaf area index, grain yield, and biomass were 6%, 14%, 16% and 20%, respectively. For maize, AquaCrop simulated crop growth more reliably than CERES-maize. The average nRMSE of 3%, 10%, 13% and 27% of the Aquacrop model in simulating the parameters of soil moisture, green crop canopy, biomass, and grain yield.

Research highlights: Considering the better performance of AquaCrop for maize and DSSAT for soybean in the study area, it is not possible to propose a specific model to simulate the growth of all crops in a region.


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How to Cite
DEHGHAN MOROOZEH, A., FARHADI BANSOULEH, B., GHOBADI, M., & AHMADPOUR, A. (2023). Assessment of DSSAT and AquaCrop models to simulate soybean and maize yield under water stress conditions. Spanish Journal of Agricultural Research, 21(3), e1201.
Water management