Comparison of methods for estimation of flood hydrograph characteristics

Research paper by F. Zakizadeh, H. Malekinezhad

Indexed on: 06 Jan '16Published on: 06 Jan '16Published in: Russian Meteorology and Hydrology


This research has been carried out for investigation and comparison of the accuracy and reliability of different methods of unit hydrograph estimation, including geomorphologic (GIUH) and geomorphoclimatic (GCIUH) methods as well as methods by Nash (Nash-IUH), Rosso (Rosso-IUH) and the Soil Conservation Service (SCS); the methods simulated the rainfall-runoff process over the Manshad River basin located in central Iran. The first six equivalent rainfall-runoff events were selected, and a hydrograph of outlet runoff was calculated for each event. Compared were peak time, peak discharge, base time, W50 and W75 parameters (hydrograph widths at 50% and 75% of peak discharge) and the volume of outlet runoff simulated by the models; then determined was the model that most efficiently estimated the hydrograph of outlet flow. The comparison of calculated and observed hydrographs showed that the Nash model was more efficient in estimating peak discharge, peak time, outlet runoff volume and the shape of direct surface runoff (DSRO) hydrographs, though it could not precisely simulate base time and W50 and W75 parameters. The other methods were more accurate in simulating outlet runoff volume of the hydrographs. The Rosso-IUH and SCS models could estimate the base time parameter better than the others. GIUH performance was comparable to the Nash method and was relatively suitable. In spite of these results, the GIUH, GCIUH, Rosso-IUH and SCS models had weak performance for estimating other characteristics of outlet DSRO hydrographs.