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An integrated uncertainty and ensemble-based data assimilation approach for improved operational streamflow predictions
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences
  • M. He, University of California, Los Angeles
  • T. S. Hogue, University of California, Los Angeles
  • S. A. Margulis, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Kristie J. Franz, Iowa State University
Document Type
Article
Publication Version
Published Version
Publication Date
3-14-2012
DOI
10.5194/hess-16-815-2012
Abstract

The current study proposes an integrated uncertainty and ensemble-based data assimilation framework (ICEA) and evaluates its viability in providing operational streamflow predictions via assimilating snow water equivalent (SWE) data. This step-wise framework applies a parameter uncertainty analysis algorithm (ISURF) to identify the uncertainty structure of sensitive model parameters, which is subsequently formulated into an Ensemble Kalman Filter (EnKF) to generate updated snow states for streamflow prediction. The framework is coupled to the US National Weather Service (NWS) snow and rainfall-runoff models. Its applicability is demonstrated for an operational basin of a western River Forecast Center (RFC) of the NWS. Performance of the framework is evaluated against existing operational baseline (RFC predictions), the stand-alone ISURF and the stand-alone EnKF. Results indicate that the ensemble-mean prediction of ICEA considerably outperforms predictions from the other three scenarios investigated, particularly in the context of predicting high flows (top 5th percentile). The ICEA streamflow ensemble predictions capture the variability of the observed streamflow well, however the ensemble is not wide enough to consistently contain the range of streamflow observations in the study basin. Our findings indicate that the ICEA has the potential to supplement the current operational (deterministic) forecasting method in terms of providing improved single-valued (e.g., ensemble mean) streamflow predictions as well as meaningful ensemble predictions.

Comments

This article is from Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 16 (2012): 815, doi: 10.5194/hess-16-815-2012. Posted with permission.

Rights
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Copyright Owner
authors
Language
en
File Format
application/pdf
Citation Information
M. He, T. S. Hogue, S. A. Margulis and Kristie J. Franz. "An integrated uncertainty and ensemble-based data assimilation approach for improved operational streamflow predictions" Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Vol. 16 Iss. 3 (2012) p. 815 - 831
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/kristie-franz/6/