Reconstruction of Historical Atmospheric-Hydrologic Data by a Hydro-climate Model for a Sparsely Gauged Watershed

The generation of streamflow data using hydrologic models can be difficult due to a lack of observations within watersheds. The authors suggest “WEHY-HCM (Watershed Environmental Hydrology Hydro-Climate Model)” as a tool for reproducing historical atmospheric-hydrologic data at the desired fine time-space scales for a sparsely gauged watershed using a hydro-climate model. A regional climate model, such as MM5 (fifth generation mesoscale model) or WRF (weather research and forecasting model), can be coupled with a process-based hydrologic module using the WEHY-HCM (WEHY). The WEHY-HCM is set up over a sparsely gauged watershed to investigate the reliability of WEH-HCM, and the spatially downscaled reconstructed atmospheric data to a 3-km horizontal grid resolution with an hourly time increment is obtained from NCAR/NCEP global reanalysis data (reanalysis I). WEHY-HCM hydrologic simulations based on reconstructed atmospheric data and approximate WEHY model parameters were applied to the Upper Putah Creek watershed. Statistical analyses were used to analyse the WEHY-HCM simulation results for both the calibration and validation cycles. Statistical testing using observed and simulated values revealed that the model’s accuracy was sufficient during both the calibration and validation times. The WEHY-HCM can describe a sparsely gauged watershed with specific topography well, according to the spatial maps of evapotranspiration rate and runoff volume. The WEHY-HCM was found to be a useful method for simulating hydrologic processes in a sparsely gauged watershed in this research.

Author (s) Details

Suhyung Jang
Water Resources Research Center, K-Water Institute, Daejeon 34045, Korea.

Shuichi Kure
Department of Environmental Engineering, Toyama Prefectural University, Toyama 939–0398, Japan.

Noriaki Ohara
Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY 82071, USA.

M. Levent Kavvas
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA.

Z. Q. Chen
California Department of Water Resources, Sacramento, CA 95814, USA.

Kara J. Carr
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA.

Michael L. Anderson
California Department of Water Resources, Sacramento, CA 95821, USA.

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