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Overview of the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center. Lisa Holts. What we do…. Event Driven (rain, snowmelt) River Forecasts. Recreational Forecasts (River trends – Peak Flows). Support Flash Flood Program. Water Supply => Reservoir Management .

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Presentation Transcript
slide1

Overview of the

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

Lisa Holts

slide2

What we do….

Event Driven (rain, snowmelt) River Forecasts

Recreational Forecasts (River trends – Peak Flows)

Support Flash Flood Program

Water Supply => Reservoir Management

Our Mission: Protection of lives and property – Enhancement of the nation’s economy

WFO and RFC partnership

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

daily river forecasts and flood forecasts
Daily River Forecasts and Flood Forecasts
  • Collect and QC data
  • Run Hydrologic Model
  • Produce daily river forecasts
  • Manual forecast updates at
    • 6:30am, 11:00am, 4:00pm
  • Automated forecast updates at
    • 12:00 am
  • During floods… updates as needed/requested
hydrologic forecasting inputs outputs

Hydrologic

Modeling

Hydrologic Forecasting Inputs/Outputs

Reservoir

Releases

Satellite Data

Precipitation

Estimates

River Gage Data

Radar Data

Snow

Precipitation

Forecasts

Soil Moisture States

Deterministic / Probabilistic

River Forecasts

Temperature

Forecasts

slide5

NOAA

Mountain Mapper – Daily QC

NWS

precipitation input
Precipitation Input
  • Multisensor Precipitation Estimates – MPE
    • Gage
    • Radar
    • Satellite
slide9

Point Values

(HPC)

Basin Values

Grid Values

(Prism

Scaling)

Future Precipitation

& Temperature

& Freezing Level

5 days of QPF

10 days temperatures

slide10
GFE
  • Increased leverage of GFE
    • View QPF differences between sources
    • Allows WFO to view QPF going into the model
  • Make adjustments in specify still
  • Future: will just use GFE and eliminate specify
slide11

Example Display From NWSRFS-

Interactive Forecast Program

Simulated -*

Observed - O

Adjusted=Forecast

slide13

Processing

IFP Runtime Modifications

slide14

Processing

IFP Unit Hydrograph Modification

slide15

Example:

Hydrograph Plot

CBRFC Web Site

NWSRFS Segments 500

River Forecast Points 165

forecast limitations quality of forecast depends on inputs
Forecast LimitationsQuality of forecast depends on inputs

Observed

precipitation

Future

Temperature

QPF

Observed flow

NWSRFS

Model

Model states

Data availability and Future uncertainty

slide18

Forecast

Result

2.00”

2.00”

1.00”

1.00”

Flood Stage

No Rise

Forecast Limitations

Future Uncertainty - Precipitation

Amounts & Timing Are Perfect: BUT Wrong Basin

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

slide19

Forecast

Result

1.00

2.00”

0.50”

1.00”

Flood Stage

Peaks Lower

Forecast Limitations

Future Uncertainty - Precipitation

Basin Is Right: BUT Forecast Amounts Too High

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

slide20

NOAA

NWS

Forecast

Result

3.00

2.00”

2.00”

1.00”

Flood Stage

Peaks Higher

Forecast Limitations

Future Uncertainty - Precipitation

Basin Is Right: BUT Forecast Amounts Too Low

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

slide21

Forecast For 24 Hours

Result: Packed Into 6 hours

2.00

2.00”

1.00”

1.00”

Flood Stage

Peaks Faster & Higher

Forecast Limitations

NOAA

Future Uncertainty - Precipitation

NWS

Basin Is Right-Amounts are Right: wrong intensity

Colorado Basin River Forecast Center

nws river forecasting system nwsrfs
NWS River Forecasting SystemNWSRFS
  • Collection of models and processes
  • Three components
    • Calibration System
    • Operational Forecasting System
    • Ensemble Streamflow Prediction
slide24

Poorly Calibrated Basin

Simulated Observed

operational forecast system ofs
Operational Forecast System (OFS)
  • Preprocesses observed and future data
  • Updates model state parameters
  • Provides short-term river and flood forecasts – 0 to 14 days out
ensemble streamflow prediction esp
Ensemble Streamflow Prediction (ESP)
  • Uses historical precipitation, temperature and evaporation data
  • Uses current model states
  • Produces mid- to long-range probabilistic forecast (weeks to months into the future)
ensemble streamflow prediction

Climate

Forecast

Adjustments

  • Daily RFC
  • Forecasting
  • Data Ingest
  • Data QC
  • Model Updating
  • Current Conditions
  • Soil
  • Reservoir Levels
  • Streamflow

April-July

Historical

Time Series

All Years of

Record

Mean Areal

Time Series

Precipitation

Temperature

NWSRFS

Hydrologic

Models

Streamflow

Forecast

Time

Series

Time

Ensemble Streamflow Prediction
slide30

71

72

73

74

75

1971

1972

1973

1974

1975

Temperature

Precipitation

Ensemble StreamFlow Prediction

Future Streamflow

Today’s Conditions

River / Res. Levels

Soil Moisture

Snowpack

Past <-

-> Future Time

1971

Start with Today’s Conditions - Create several possible future streamflow patterns - Based on historical climate.

supporting the flash flood program
Supporting the Flash Flood Program
  • NWSRFS – Lumped 6 hourly model
  • CBRFC has recalibrated Arizona segments to an hourly time step
  •  blurred line when RFC can or cannot model event
  • For flash floods, RFC provides tools to help WFO decide when to issue FFWs
    • FFG, FFPI
slide33

Land Use ?

Soil type ?

Vegetation type and density ?

Fire activity ?

Slopes?

Flash Flood Potential Index

concept

Try to qualify the flash flood threat

Highlight flash flood prone areas

water supply operations
Water Supply Operations
  • Volumetric forecast for the runoff season
  • Essential to water managers (dam operations, water allocation, water planning, etc..)
  • Issues January through July
  • forecasters devote first 4 days of the month to water supply forecasting
  • 146 water supply forecast points
  • Spring is the busiest time for the RFC
water supply
Water Supply

Monthly water supply forecasts generated for seasonal volumes during winter / spring seasons

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