Runoff Modeling Using the Geomorphological Instantaneous Unit Hydrograph and ARC/INFO Geographic Information System

by Nageshwar R. Bhaskar, Univ of Louisville, Louisville, United States,
Ravikumar S. Devulapalli, Univ of Louisville, Louisville, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Civil Engineering Applications of Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems


The degree to which the spatial variability of watershed characteristics (geographical and climatological) is recognized for simulating watershed runoff depends on the hydrologic model used and the manner by which the necessary spatial data is compiled. The use of a Geographic Information System (GIS) and the associated software can not only make this task relatively easy but accurate as well. To illustrate the use of GIS in hydrologic modeling a study is undertaken to simulate watershed runoff using the Geomorphological Instantaneous Unit Hydrograph (GIUH). The required database, composed of various geomorphic and other hydrologic characteristics of select watersheds within the Big Sandy river basin in northeastern Kentucky, is compiled using a GIS software called ARC/INFO. The hydrologic model used to simulate watershed runoff is a geomorphic model called Watershed Hydrology Simulation (WAHS) Model. This model simulates runoff from a watershed by developing a deterministic form of the GIUH based on a conceptualization of the watershed channel network in conjunction with the Strahler's stream-ordering system. The ARCH/INFO GIS is capable of compiling basic geomorphic information in a form that would enable discrete modeling of the watershed hydrologic response by the WAHS model. Other hydrologic information pertaining to the rainfall-runoff events used in the study is compiled and analyzed externally.

Subject Headings: Hydrologic models | Geographic information systems | Watersheds | Information systems | Simulation models | Runoff | Spatial data | Kentucky | United States

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