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Journal Articles European Journal of Agronomy Year : 2003

An overview of the crop model STICS

Un aperçu du modèle STICS

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R. Roche
Jorge Sierra


STICS is a model that has been developed at INRA (France) since 1996. It simulates crop growth as well as soil water and nitrogen balances driven by daily climatic data. It calculates both agricultural variables (yield, input consumption) and environmental variables (water and nitrogen losses). From a conceptual point of view, STICS relies essentially on well-known relationships or on simplifications of existing models. One of the key elements of STICS is its adaptability to various crops. This is achieved by the use of generic parameters relevant for most crops and on options in the model formalisations concerning both physiology and management, that have to be chosen for each crop. All the users of the model form a group that participates in making the model and the software evolve, because STICS is not a fixed model but rather an interactive modelling platform. This article presents version 5.0 by giving details on the model formalisations concerning shoot ecophysiology, soil functioning in interaction with roots, and relationships between crop management and the soil-crop system. The data required to run the model relate to climate, soil (water and nitrogen initial profiles and permanent soil features) and crop management. The species and varietal parameters are provided by the specialists of each species. The data required to validate the model relate to the agronomic or environmental outputs at the end of the cropping season. Some examples of validation and application are given, demonstrating the generality of the STICS model and its ability to adapt to a wide range of agro-environmental issues. Finally, the conceptual limits of the model are discussed.


Dates and versions

hal-02581146 , version 1 (14-05-2020)



Nadine Brisson, Christian Gary, Eric Justes, R. Roche, B. Mary, et al.. An overview of the crop model STICS. European Journal of Agronomy, 2003, 18 (3-4), pp.309-332. ⟨10.1016/S1161-0301(02)00110-7⟩. ⟨hal-02581146⟩
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