Main content area

Probabilistic Snow Cover and Ensemble Streamflow Estimations in the Upper Euphrates Basin

Şorman, A. Arda, Uysal, Gökçen, Şensoy, Aynur
Vodohospodársky časopis 2019 v.67 no.1 pp. 82-92
Snowmelt Runoff Model, basins, melting, moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer, mountains, prediction, probability, probability analysis, remote sensing, runoff, snow, snowmelt, snowpack, spatial variation, spring, stream flow, summer, temperature, temporal variation, Turkey (country)
Predicting snow cover dynamics and relevant streamflow due to snowmelt is a challenging issue in mountainous basins. Spatio-temporal variations of snow extent can be analyzed using probabilistic snow cover maps derived from satellite images within a relatively long period. In this study, Probabilistic Snow Depletion Curves (P-SDCs) and Probabilistic Snow Lines (P-SLs) are acquired from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) cloud-filtered daily snow cover images. Analyses of P-SDCs show a strong correlation with average daily runoff (R2 = 0.90) and temperature (R2 = 0.96). On the other hand, the challenge lies in developing noteworthy methods to use P-SDCs in streamflow estimations. Therefore, the main objective is to explore the feasibility of producing probabilistic runoff forecasts with P-SDC forcing in a snow dominated basin. Upper Euphrates Basin in Turkey has large snow extent and high snowmelt contribution during spring and summer periods. The melting characteristics are defined by P-SDCs using MODIS imagery for 2001-2012. The value of snow probability maps on ensemble runoff predictions is shown with Snowmelt Runoff Model (SRM) during 2013-2015 where the estimated runoff values indicate good consistency (NSE: 0.47-0.93) with forecasts based on the derived P-SDCs. Therefore, the probabilistic approach distinguishes the snow cover characteristics for a region and promotes a useful methodology on the application of probabilistic runoff predictions especially for snow dominated areas.