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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 1384302, 17 pages
Research Article

Impact Assessment of Uncertainty Propagation of Ensemble NWP Rainfall to Flood Forecasting with Catchment Scale

1Disaster Prevention Research Institute, Kyoto University, Kyoto 611-0011, Japan
2Department of Civil and Earth Resources Engineering, Kyoto University, Kyoto 615-8540, Japan

Received 14 September 2015; Revised 15 November 2015; Accepted 15 November 2015

Academic Editor: Milan Gocic

Copyright © 2016 Wansik Yu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The common approach to quantifying the precipitation forecast uncertainty is ensemble simulations where a numerical weather prediction (NWP) model is run for a number of cases with slightly different initial conditions. In practice, the spread of ensemble members in terms of flood discharge is used as a measure of forecast uncertainty due to uncertain precipitation forecasts. This study presents the uncertainty propagation of rainfall forecast into hydrological response with catchment scale through distributed rainfall-runoff modeling based on the forecasted ensemble rainfall of NWP model. At first, forecast rainfall error based on the BIAS is compared with flood forecast error to assess the error propagation. Second, the variability of flood forecast uncertainty according to catchment scale is discussed using ensemble spread. Then we also assess the flood forecast uncertainty with catchment scale using an estimation regression equation between ensemble rainfall BIAS and discharge BIAS. Finally, the flood forecast uncertainty with RMSE using specific discharge in catchment scale is discussed. Our study is carried out and verified using the largest flood event by typhoon “Talas” of 2011 over the 33 subcatchments of Shingu river basin (2,360 km2), which is located in the Kii Peninsula, Japan.