Généralisation de l'approche d'ensemble à la prévision hydrologique dans les bassins versants non jaugés

Abstract : Flood forecasting is a complex hydrological task: there are numerous uncertainties in the hydrological modelling process, in the determination of the initial catchment conditions before launching the forecast, and in the evolution of future weather conditions. In ungauged catchments, where streamflow observations are incomplete or absent, these uncertainties are even greater, and the need to reduce them becomes essential.This thesis focuses on simple and robust methods that can provide relevant information to quantify the uncertainty in ungauged catchments. The aim is to study the best strategy to search for information in gauged "donors" basins and to transfer it to the ungauged site. We investigate what information is needed to set up a rainfall-runoff model and to perform forecast updating in real time. These two components of a flood forecasting system are thus decoupled in our approach.This thesis is based on a large database of about 1000 French catchments, which includes a key set of 211 catchments that are used to validate the developed approaches. It also relies on an archive of about 4.5 years of ensemble forecasts of rainfall, which are used for hydrological modelling on a daily time step. The methodology adopted here integrates the scenarios of regional transfer of information and the scenarios of weather forecasting together in a forecasting system for ungauged basins. The approach of ensemble forecasting is thus generalised to this particular case of hydrological forecasting. Using several scenarios of future flows, we seek to quantify the predictive uncertainty in ungauged sites.To evaluate the flow forecast scenarios of the hydrological ensemble prediction system, a diagnostic framework with several numerical and graphical criteria is developed. Special attention is paid to the attributes of "reliability" and "accuracy" of the forecasts. We propose a new graphic criterion, named "diagram of ensemble accuracy". This criterion allows to highlight the quality of forecasts that are not necessarily reliable, but are accurate.The results show that forecast reliability in ungauged sites can be improved by using several sets of parameters from neighbour catchments. If on the one hand the variability brought by the information from the geographical proximity influences the spread of the ensemble forecasts, and thus improves forecast reliability, on the other hand taking into account the physical characteristics of the catchments, especially the surface, emerged as an interesting alternative, as it positively influences also the accuracy of the forecasts at the ungauged site.It is also shown that the accuracy of ensemble forecasts at ungauged sites can be improved with the transfer of updating information from gauged neighbour catchments (forecasting updating is here characterized by the assimilation of the last discharge observation in the hydrological model before the time of forecast). The updating information transferred to the ungauged site is the correction applied to the routing reservoir of the hydrological model. Different measures of forecast performance showed that the best option to improve forecast accuracy is to consider the corrections made at the closest gauged site. Kriging also gave satisfactory results, with additionally a positive impact also on the reliability of the ensemble flow forecasts.
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Rindra Annie Randrianasolo. Généralisation de l'approche d'ensemble à la prévision hydrologique dans les bassins versants non jaugés. Sciences de la Terre. AgroParisTech, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012AGPT0083⟩. ⟨pastel-00954967⟩

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