7th HEPEX webinar: Generating and improving flow forecasts for optimization of control operations

Speaker: Nathalie Voisin, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Washington, USA

Date and time: Thursday, August 29th, 2013, 14:30 UTC

Watch the seminar again on youtube

Abstract: Streamflow control operations rely on short term forecasts and planning on seasonal to interannual forecasts. Temperature and pressure heights are commonly used for weather and climate forecasts verification by meteorologists. Hydrologists, however, focus on precipitation and temperature events with spatio -temporal correlation across multiple scales for the verification of weather forecasts, with the ultimate goal to improve hydrologic prediction. Hydrologic “pre-processors” aim at improving the weather and climate forecasts, i.e. the forcing into hydrological models, through statistical and data assimilation approaches. Flow forecasts can then be further “post-processed” using data assimilation of predicted hydrological variables and statistical approaches, since many predicted hydrologic variables can also be directly observed and verified over retrospective periods. Flow forecast applications are very diverse and forecasts may not be fully used in dam operations due in part to a lack of communication, not achieving a certain level of accuracy, and uncertainty on how to best use the different forecast products. This webinar presents a hydrologic forecast system across multiple temporal scales as part of the US Department of Energy’s Water Use Optimization Toolset, which employs multi-scale optimization of reservoir operations considering the short-term power market,  medium-range inflows and seasonal water supply forecasts and environmental flows requirements. We conclude with a case study of the Feather River, CA, discussing the potential value of flow forecasts and different forecast improvements for simplified reservoir operations.

About the speaker: Dr. Nathalie Voisin is a hydro-meteorology  modeler whose primary interest is in research and development for water resources modeling and forecasting, including the integration with other models: atmospheric, coastal, water resources management. She joined the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory as research scientist in 2010. She holds a Ph.D. in water resources (2010) from the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Washington, Seattle WA, a M.Sc. (2003) in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences from McGill University, Montreal Canada, and an Engineering Diploma (2001) in fluid mechanics and hydraulics engineering from ENSEIHT Toulouse France. Her background and experience covers meteorology and climatology to surface hydrology modeling and water resources models, from time scale and horizons ranging from short range to seasonal to climate change and watershed to global domain. Her expertise includes hydro-meteorologic modeling, and quantification, calibration and verification of uncertainties (weather data, data assimilation, flow)


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