Probabilistic Dependable Hydro Capacity: Benefits of Synthetic Hydrology

by Konstantin Staschus, PG&E, United States,
Jerson Kelman, PG&E, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computerized Decision Support Systems for Water Managers


This paper focuses on the benefits of using synthetic streamflows (the 'synthetic hydrology' approach) for determining a probabilistically defined dependable hydro capacity, as opposed to using historical flows only. A three-stage sampling experiment is used to determine which of the two approaches provides a more precise estimate of probabilistic dependable capacity in a case study. The case study analyzes the Central Valley Project in California. The results indicate that there is no significant advantage to using the more elaborate synthetic hydrology approach for most hydro reliability levels in this case. Possible explanations for this result are also offered.

Subject Headings: Case studies | Probability | Hydrology | Hydro power | Hydrologic models | Streamflow | Power plants | Water supply | California | United States

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