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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: HYDROLOGIC PROCESSES, SCALE, CLIMATE VARIABILITY, AND WATER RESOURCES FOR SEMIARID WATERSHED MANAGEMENT Title: Application of The KINEROS2 Site Specific Model to South-Central NY and Northeast PA: Forecasting Gaged and Ungaged Fast Responding Watersheds

Authors
item Schaffner, M. -
item Unkrich, Carl
item Goodrich, David

Submitted to: Popular Publication
Publication Type: Research Technical Update
Publication Acceptance Date: March 1, 2010
Publication Date: April 1, 2010
Repository URL: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/hq/ssd/erps/ta/ta2010-01.pdf
Citation: Schaffner, M., Unkrich, C.L., Goodrich, D.C. 2010. Application of The KINEROS2 Site Specific Model to South-Central NY and Northeast PA: Forecasting Gaged and Ungaged Fast Responding Watersheds. NWS Eastern Region Technical Attachment No. 2010-01. (http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/hq/ssd/erps/ta/ta2010-01.pdf). . Popular Publication.

Interpretive Summary: Fast responding headwater river basins and small streams pose a significant threat to life and property throughout the eastern United States. The National Weather Service (NWS) of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is responsible for providing flash flood warnings to the public. In this study, the NWS, in cooperation with the USDA-ARS, evaluated the KINEROS2 watershed model developed by the ARS, for flash flood forecasting in several small headwater watersheds in the Binghamton County, New York Area. The KINEROS2 model was adapted to use rainfall estimates made by NWS weather radar to provide very rapid estimates of watershed runoff. This study demonstrated that KINEROS2 can be successfully used for flash flood forecasting in the area. Running the KINEROS2 model on these small watersheds provided information on the size and timing of flash flood events which is not currently available using current NOAA/NWS flash flood forecasting methodologies.

Technical Abstract: Fast responding headwater river basins and small streams pose a significant threat to life and property throughout the eastern United States. This paper presents the results from the application of the real-time distributed model KINematic runoff and EROSion model (KINEROS2) to the complex terrain of the Binghamton County Warning Area. This study demonstrates a proof of concept for applying KINEROS2 to a more humid regime. Key model parameters needed for manual calibration of peak flow generated by KINEROS2 in humid climates were identified. Saturated hydrologic conductivity of hillslopes had the greatest influence on the peak flow rate and channel length on the timing of the peak flow rate. It was found that optimal parameter values varied significantly between storms with respect to both basin average rainfall and maximum basin average rainfall intensity. This uncertainty in parameter estimation is addressed by running KINEROS2 with parameter sets that reflect the range obtained by calibration. An additional source of uncertainty is the selection of an appropriate Z-R relationship. KINEROS2 can be run for ungaged watersheds assuming some information can be collected on the timing and magnitude of several flow events. Running a distributed model on the small basin scale provides information on the magnitude and timing of a flash flood event which is not currently available using current NOAA/NWS flash flood forecasting methodologies.

Last Modified: 10/30/2014
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