Commenced in January 2007
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Paper Count: 4

flood frequency Related Abstracts

4 Identification of Outliers in Flood Frequency Analysis: Comparison of Original and Multiple Grubbs-Beck Test

Authors: Ataur Rahman, Khaled Haddad, Ayesha S. Rahman


At-site flood frequency analysis is used to estimate flood quantiles when at-site record length is reasonably long. In Australia, FLIKE software has been introduced for at-site flood frequency analysis. The advantage of FLIKE is that, for a given application, the user can compare a number of most commonly adopted probability distributions and parameter estimation methods relatively quickly using a windows interface. The new version of FLIKE has been incorporated with the multiple Grubbs and Beck test which can identify multiple numbers of potentially influential low flows. This paper presents a case study considering six catchments in eastern Australia which compares two outlier identification tests (original Grubbs and Beck test and multiple Grubbs and Beck test) and two commonly applied probability distributions (Generalized Extreme Value (GEV) and Log Pearson type 3 (LP3)) using FLIKE software. It has been found that the multiple Grubbs and Beck test when used with LP3 distribution provides more accurate flood quantile estimates than when LP3 distribution is used with the original Grubbs and Beck test. Between these two methods, the differences in flood quantile estimates have been found to be up to 61% for the six study catchments. It has also been found that GEV distribution (with L moments) and LP3 distribution with the multiple Grubbs and Beck test provide quite similar results in most of the cases; however, a difference up to 38% has been noted for flood quantiles for annual exceedance probability (AEP) of 1 in 100 for one catchment. These findings need to be confirmed with a greater number of stations across other Australian states.

Keywords: floods, Probability Distributions, outlier, FLIKE, flood frequency

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3 Design Flood Estimation in Satluj Basin-Challenges for Sunni Dam Hydro Electric Project, Himachal Pradesh-India

Authors: Navneet Kalia, Lalit Mohan Verma, Vinay Guleria


Introduction: Design Flood studies are essential for effective planning and functioning of water resource projects. Design flood estimation for Sunni Dam Hydro Electric Project located in State of Himachal Pradesh, India, on the river Satluj, was a big challenge in view of the river flowing in the Himalayan region from Tibet to India, having a large catchment area of varying topography, climate, and vegetation. No Discharge data was available for the part of the river in Tibet, whereas, for India, it was available only at Khab, Rampur, and Luhri. The estimation of Design Flood using standard methods was not possible. This challenge was met using two different approaches for upper (snow-fed) and lower (rainfed) catchment using Flood Frequency Approach and Hydro-metrological approach. i) For catchment up to Khab Gauging site (Sub-Catchment, C1), Flood Frequency approach was used. Around 90% of the catchment area (46300 sqkm) up to Khab is snow-fed which lies above 4200m. In view of the predominant area being snow-fed area, 1 in 10000 years return period flood estimated using Flood Frequency analysis at Khab was considered as Probable Maximum Flood (PMF). The flood peaks were taken from daily observed discharges at Khab, which were increased by 10% to make them instantaneous. Design Flood of 4184 cumec thus obtained was considered as PMF at Khab. ii) For catchment between Khab and Sunni Dam (Sub-Catchment, C2), Hydro-metrological approach was used. This method is based upon the catchment response to the rainfall pattern observed (Probable Maximum Precipitation - PMP) in a particular catchment area. The design flood computation mainly involves the estimation of a design storm hyetograph and derivation of the catchment response function. A unit hydrograph is assumed to represent the response of the entire catchment area to a unit rainfall. The main advantage of the hydro-metrological approach is that it gives a complete flood hydrograph which allows us to make a realistic determination of its moderation effect while passing through a reservoir or a river reach. These studies were carried out to derive PMF for the catchment area between Khab and Sunni Dam site using a 1-day and 2-day PMP values of 232 and 416 cm respectively. The PMF so obtained was 12920.60 cumec. Final Result: As the Catchment area up to Sunni Dam has been divided into 2 sub-catchments, the Flood Hydrograph for the Catchment C1 has been routed through the connecting channel reach (River Satluj) using Muskingum method and accordingly, the Design Flood was computed after adding the routed flood ordinates with flood ordinates of catchment C2. The total Design Flood (i.e. 2-Day PMF) with a peak of 15473 cumec was obtained. Conclusion: Even though, several factors are relevant while deciding the method to be used for design flood estimation, data availability and the purpose of study are the most important factors. Since, generally, we cannot wait for the hydrological data of adequate quality and quantity to be available, flood estimation has to be done using whatever data is available. Depending upon the type of data available for a particular catchment, the method to be used is to be selected.

Keywords: design storm, flood frequency, PMF, design flood, PMP, unit hydrograph

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2 Impact of Ecosystem Engineers on Soil Structuration in a Restored Floodplain in Switzerland

Authors: Andreas Schomburg, Claire Le Bayon, Claire Guenat, Philip Brunner


Numerous river restoration projects have been established in Switzerland in recent years after decades of human activity in floodplains. The success of restoration projects in terms of biodiversity and ecosystem functions largely depend on the development of the floodplain soil system. Plants and earthworms as ecosystem engineers are known to be able to build up a stable soil structure by incorporating soil organic matter into the soil matrix that creates water stable soil aggregates. Their engineering efficiency however largely depends on changing soil properties and frequent floods along an evolutive floodplain transect. This study, therefore, aims to quantify the effect of flood frequency and duration as well as of physico-chemical soil parameters on plants’ and earthworms’ engineering efficiency. It is furthermore predicted that these influences may have a different impact on one of the engineers that leads to a varying contribution to aggregate formation within the floodplain transect. Ecosystem engineers were sampled and described in three different floodplain habitats differentiated according to the evolutionary stages of the vegetation ranging from pioneer to forest vegetation in a floodplain restored 15 years ago. In addition, the same analyses were performed in an embanked adjacent pasture as a reference for the pre-restored state. Soil aggregates were collected and analyzed for their organic matter quantity and quality using Rock Eval pyrolysis. Water level and discharge measurements dating back until 2008 were used to quantify the return period of major floods. Our results show an increasing amount of water stable aggregates in soil with increasing distance to the river and show largest values in the reference site. A decreasing flood frequency and the proportion of silt and clay in the soil texture explain these findings according to F values from one way ANOVA of a fitted mixed effect model. Significantly larger amounts of labile organic matter signatures were found in soil aggregates in the forest habitat and in the reference site that indicates a larger contribution of plants to soil aggregation in these habitats compared to the pioneer vegetation zone. Earthworms’ contribution to soil aggregation does not show significant differences in the floodplain transect, but their effect could be identified even in the pioneer vegetation with its large proportion of coarse sand in the soil texture and frequent inundations. These findings indicate that ecosystem engineers seem to be able to create soil aggregates even under unfavorable soil conditions and under frequent floods. A restoration success can therefore be expected even in ecosystems with harsh soil properties and frequent external disturbances.

Keywords: River Restoration, flood frequency, ecosystem engineers, floodplains, rock eval pyrolysis, soil organic matter incorporation, soil structuration

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1 A Case Study on the Estimation of Design Discharge for Flood Management in Lower Damodar Region, India

Authors: Susmita Ghosh


Catchment area of Damodar River, India experiences seasonal rains due to the south-west monsoon every year and depending upon the intensity of the storms, floods occur. During the monsoon season, the rainfall in the area is mainly due to active monsoon conditions. The upstream reach of Damodar river system has five dams store the water for utilization for various purposes viz, irrigation, hydro-power generation, municipal supplies and last but not the least flood moderation. But, in the downstream reach of Damodar River, known as Lower Damodar region, is severely and frequently suffering from flood due to heavy monsoon rainfall and also release from upstream reservoirs. Therefore, an effective flood management study is required to know in depth the nature and extent of flood, water logging, and erosion related problems, affected area, and damages in the Lower Damodar region, by conducting mathematical model study. The design flood or discharge is needed to decide to assign the respective model for getting several scenarios from the simulation runs. The ultimate aim is to achieve a sustainable flood management scheme from the several alternatives. there are various methods for estimating flood discharges to be carried through the rivers and their tributaries for quick drainage from inundated areas due to drainage congestion and excess rainfall. In the present study, the flood frequency analysis is performed to decide the design flood discharge of the study area. This, on the other hand, has limitations in respect of availability of long peak flood data record for determining long type of probability density function correctly. If sufficient past records are available, the maximum flood on a river with a given frequency can safely be determined. The floods of different frequency for the Damodar has been calculated by five candidate distributions i.e., generalized extreme value, extreme value-I, Pearson type III, Log Pearson and normal. Annual peak discharge series are available at Durgapur barrage for the period of 1979 to 2013 (35 years). The available series are subjected to frequency analysis. The primary objective of the flood frequency analysis is to relate the magnitude of extreme events to their frequencies of occurrence through the use of probability distributions. The design flood for return periods of 10, 15 and 25 years return period at Durgapur barrage are estimated by flood frequency method. It is necessary to develop flood hydrographs for the above floods to facilitate the mathematical model studies to find the depth and extent of inundation etc. Null hypothesis that the distributions fit the data at 95% confidence is checked with goodness of fit test, i.e., Chi Square Test. It is revealed from the goodness of fit test that the all five distributions do show a good fit on the sample population and is therefore accepted. However, it is seen that there is considerable variation in the estimation of frequency flood. It is therefore considered prudent to average out the results of these five distributions for required frequencies. The inundated area from past data is well matched using this flood.

Keywords: flood frequency, design discharge, goodness of fit, sustainable flood management

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