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Gridded climate data products are an alternative to instrumental measurements as inputs to rainfall–runoff models

Ledesma, Jose and Futter, Martyn (2017). Gridded climate data products are an alternative to instrumental measurements as inputs to rainfall–runoff models. Hydrological processes. 31 :18 , 3283-3293
[Research article]

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Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.


Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hyp.11269


Rainfall-runoff models are widely used to predict flows using observed (instrumental) time series of air temperature and precipitation as inputs. Poor model performance is often associated with difficulties in estimating catchment-scale meteorological variables from point observations. Readily available gridded climate products are an underutilized source of temperature and precipitation time series for rainfall-runoff modelling, which may overcome some of the performance issues associated with poor-quality instrumental data in small headwater monitoring catchments. Here we compare the performance of instrumental measured and E-OBS gridded temperature and precipitation time series as inputs in the rainfall-runoff models "PERSiST" and "HBV" for flow prediction in six small Swedish catchments. For both models and most catchments, the gridded data produced statistically better simulations than did those obtained using instrumental measurements. Despite the high correspondence between instrumental and gridded temperature, both temperature and precipitation were responsible for the difference. We conclude that (a) gridded climate products such as the E-OBS dataset could be more widely used as alternative input to rainfall-runoff models, even when instrumental measurements are available, and (b) the processing applied to gridded climate products appears to provide a more realistic approximation of small catchment-scale temperature and precipitation patterns needed for flow simulations. Further research on this issue is needed and encouraged.

Authors/Creators:Ledesma, Jose and Futter, Martyn
Title:Gridded climate data products are an alternative to instrumental measurements as inputs to rainfall–runoff models
Series Name/Journal:Hydrological processes
Year of publishing :2017
Page range:3283-3293
Number of Pages:11
Publisher:John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Agris subject categories.:P Natural resources > P10 Water resources and management
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 105 Earth and Related Environmental Sciences > Environmental Sciences (social aspects to be 507)
Agrovoc terms:hydrology, runoff, model
Keywords:catchment science, E-OBS, hydrological modelling, model error, model input data, model uncertainty, precipitation measurement, temperature measurement
Permanent URL:
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
Web of Science (WoS)000408341400011
ID Code:14859
Faculty:NJ - Fakulteten för naturresurser och jordbruksvetenskap
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:09 Jan 2018 11:52
Metadata Last Modified:11 Jan 2018 11:39

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