Hydraulic modelling approches for high and low flow conditions

PhD research

April 2020 till March 2024

Persons involved
Ir. Pravash Mool (PhD-student)
Dr. Ir. Anouk Bomers (daily supervisor, co-promotor)
Dr. Ir. Martijn J. Booij (co-promotor)
Prof. dr. S.J.M.H. Hulscher (promotor)
Dr. Jord warmink (advisor) 


Summary of Research
The research aims to develop a single hydraulic modelling approach which is capable of predicting a wide range of discharges accurately. This research will particularly focus on setting up novel calibration procedures such that the hydraulic models are capable of simulating flood wave propagation as well as predicting water levels during low flow with high accuracy. Generally, both hydrological and hydraulic models are only calibrated for either very high flows or very low flows till now and therefore they are only able to predict high flows and low flows with good accuracy respectively.

The year 2018 perfectly showed the consequences of both high and low flows on economic and ecological losses. In the month January, many basements of houses in Deventer were flooded caused by the high ground water levels as a consequence of the high discharge of the IJssel River. On the other hand, a long period of drought occurred during the summer months which had a huge impact on navigation, water supply for agriculture, industry and households, and the prevention of salt intrusion.  This raises the question whether it is possible to optimize the current river system such that both high flow and low flow conditions are mitigated in the future. To solve both problems related to high and low discharge stages, we should focus on an integral approach rather than solving the two problems independently to optimize the current river system.

The research involves assessing the performance of available hydraulic models for high and low discharges currently calibrated in terms of simulated water levels and discharges. The research shall also assess which type of model (1D, 2D or 1D-2D) is most efficient in simulating high and low flows and how a dynamic modelling approach can be set up linking the two flow conditions. The research shall also assess which river management interventions can be designed that have a positive effect on water levels during both high and low flow conditions considering future 2100 climate scenarios.