Welcome to the Distributed Rainfall-Runoff Project

Distributed Rainfall-Runoff Modeling

Welcome to this research project! It is open to everyone who wants to contribute to improved rainfall-runoff modeling in The Netherlands.

The project objective is to find & apply the ultimate Distributed Rainfall-Runoff model for Dutch situations that:

  • can be coupled to the existing 1D model schematizations that are available in SOBEK
  • can compute the effects of e.g. river restoration projects on surrounding phreatic groundwater table
  • supports processes in the unsaturated zone and the resulting reduction in evaporation due to dropping groundwater tables
  • easily imports GIS-files containing soil type, land use and surface levels
  • Preferrably is Open Source, so as to extend it with typical Dutch situations such as controlled water levels

A little about the background of this project: it was initiated by myself since I was not satisfied with the way rainfall-runoff modeling currently works in The Netherlands. Current practice is to apply "Lumped" Rainfall-Runoff models, which involves a lot of work converting 2D GIS-data into 0D modeling objects. Furthermore, calibration is often a pain and finally, Lumped Rainfall Runoff models are not suitable to compute detailed groundwater tables.

Various processes that are relevant in Rainfall Runoff modeling. Source: www.hydrogeosphere.org

Therefore, within this project we will search for the ultimate Distributed Rainfall-Runoff concept and apply it to a particular region in The Netherlands.
The project consists of the following phases:

  1. Setting up a Multi-Criteria Analysis for models of the Distributed Rainfall-Runoff type
  2. Choosing the best model for our problem
  3. Applying the chosen model to the selected region

This project would not have been possible without the contribution of:

  • Ralph Pieters, who dedicates his final thesis at Larenstein University to this subject
  • Anouk Sloot, Ralph's supervisor
  • Jan Gooijer from the Dutch Waterboard Noorderzijlvest, who arranged financing

Furthermore, I'd like to express my gratitude to all members of IAHR's River-List, who generously supplied information about existing modeling concepts.
I sincerely hope that this Wiki will become a living and growing document which will finally result in new and innovative solutions for Rainfall-Runoff modeling.

One last word for our foreign guests: please keep in mind that many areas in The Netherlands lie below sea level. This means that in many areas the water levels are being controlled using pumping stations. In our quest towards the ultimate Distributed Rainfall-Runoff model, this is a serious thing to keep in mind. Does the model support controlling of water levels or is it expandable with such an option?

Siebe Bosch
Senior Hydrologist
The Hague, February 21, 2011

Feel free to e-mail me at: siebe *at* hydroconsult.nl