Spatial Sensitivity Analysis of Snow Cover Data in a Distributed Rainfall&Ndash;Runoff Model (2014)

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As the availability of spatially distributed data sets for distributed rainfall–runoff modelling is strongly growing, more attention should be paid to the influence of the quality of the data on the calibration. While a lot of progress has been made on using distributed data in simulations of hydrological models, sensitivity of spatial data with respect to model results is not well understood. In this paper we develop a spatial sensitivity analysis (SA) method for snow cover fraction input data (SCF) for a distributed rainfall–runoff model to investigate if the model is differently subjected to SCF uncertainty in different zones of the model. The analysis was focused on the relation between the SCF sensitivity and the physical, spatial parameters and processes of a distributed rainfall–runoff model. The methodology is tested for the Biebrza River catchment, Poland for which a distributed WetSpa model is setup to simulate two years of daily runoff. The SA uses the Latin-Hypercube One-factor-At-a-Time (LH-OAT) algorithm, which uses different response functions for each 4 km × 4 km snow zone. The results show that the spatial patterns of sensitivity can be easily interpreted by co-occurrence of different environmental factors such as: geomorphology, soil texture, land-use, precipitation and temperature. Moreover, the spatial pattern of sensitivity under different response functions is related to different spatial parameters and physical processes. The results clearly show that the LH-OAT algorithm is suitable for the spatial sensitivity analysis approach and that the SCF is spatially sensitive in the WetSpa model.
Year: 2014
Language: English
In: Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss. 11 (10): 11987-12025

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Note: Open access article