Flood Inundation and Run-Off Modeling in Tropical Cyclones using the WRF-HYDRO Model

Tuesday, 19 April 2016
Plaza Grand Ballroom (The Condado Hilton Plaza)
Konstantine Louis Pryles, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ; and E. A. Ritchie

The Weather Research and Forecasting Model Hydrological modeling extension package (WRF-Hydro) is a model-coupling framework used to improve prediction skill of flooding forecasts using numerical prediction. Improvement of flood forecasting of tropical cyclones (TCs) is an area that could be very useful to weather forecasters and emergency managers, and ultimately the public. Flooding from TC landfall would be better predicted with a coupled atmospheric and hydrologic model (WRF-Hydro) than solely an atmospheric model (WRF). WRF-Hydro could be used to project how high water levels would be throughout the TCs lifetime with certain tracks and rain rates, thus predict the likelihood of structural damage due to flooding.

Several case studies have been conducted on tropical cyclones that made landfall in different parts of the world in various climate zones: Tropical Storm Lee (2011), which made landfall in Louisiana, causing widespread, destructive flooding throughout the central Gulf Coast; Hurricane Manuel (2013), which made landfall in the southern coast of Mexico; and Intense Cyclone Indlala (2007), which devastated the northeast coast of Madagascar. In this presentation we will analyze the processes that lead to flooding and inundation due to these TCs.

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