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A physically-based parsimonious hydrological model for flash floods in Mediterranean catchments

Roux, Hélène and Labat, David and Garambois, Pierre-André and Maubourguet, Marie-Madeleine and Chorda, Jacques and Dartus, Denis A physically-based parsimonious hydrological model for flash floods in Mediterranean catchments. (2011) Natural Hazards & Earth System Sciences, vol. 11 (n° 9). pp. 2567-2582. ISSN 1561-8633

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Official URL: http://www.nat-hazards-earth-syst-sci.net/11/2567/2011/nhess-11-2567-2011.pdf

Abstract

A spatially distributed hydrological model, dedicated to flood simulation, is developed on the basis of physical process representation (infiltration, overland flow, channel routing). Estimation of model parameters requires data concerning topography, soil properties, vegetation and land use. Four parameters are calibrated for the entire catchment using one flood event. Model sensitivity to individual parameters is assessed using Monte-Carlo simulations. Results of this sensitivity analysis with a criterion based on the Nash efficiency coefficient and the error of peak time and runoff are used to calibrate the model. This procedure is tested on the Gardon d'Anduze catchment, located in the Mediterranean zone of southern France. A first validation is conducted using three flood events with different hydrometeorological characteristics. This sensitivity analysis along with validation tests illustrates the predictive capability of the model and points out the possible improvements on the model's structure and parameterization for flash flood forecasting, especially in ungauged basins. Concerning the model structure, results show that water transfer through the subsurface zone also contributes to the hydrograph response to an extreme event, especially during the recession period. Maps of soil saturation emphasize the impact of rainfall and soil properties variability on these dynamics. Adding a subsurface flow component in the simulation also greatly impacts the spatial distribution of soil saturation and shows the importance of the drainage network. Measures of such distributed variables would help discriminating between different possible model structures.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:http://www.nat-hazards-earth-syst-sci.net/11/2567/2011/nhess-11-2567-2011.pdf
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National des Etudes Spatiales - CNES
French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS
Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - INPT
French research institutions > Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - IRD
Université de Toulouse > Université Paul Sabatier-Toulouse III - UPS
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Deposited By: Catherine THURIOT
Deposited On:24 Feb 2012 13:57

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