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Impact of Inland Bathymetry on Applications. Flood inundation, channel hydraulic geometry and flood flow estimates

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Created: Oct 27, 2019 at 2:14 p.m.
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Presentation given at TopoBathy Workshop Sept 17-18, 2019, Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Flood inundation is difficult to map, model, and forecast because of the data needed and the computational demand. Recently an approach based on the relative elevation, or Height Above Nearest Drainage (HAND), which is derived from a digital elevation model (DEM), has been suggested for both flood mapping and obtaining reach hydraulic properties and synthetic rating curves. These products are only as good as the underlying DEM from which they are derived and thus better inland bathymetry offers the potential for incorporating bathymetry into national scale models to improve flood inundation modeling and mapping. This presentation will review the approach for using relative elevation in flood modeling, describing how HAND is calculated, how it is used to map flood inundation for stream reach catchments and how it is used to determine stream reach properties, identifying shortcomings and giving ideas for improvements. As we obtain more detailed information on bathymetry, topography and hydrography it is important to establish a consistent data model for the river bed that is used in HAND related work that aligns and reconciles elevation and hydrography. This presentation will discuss approaches for using hydrography to remove DEM obstacles, the segmentation of streams used in deriving HAND reach average hydraulic properties and ideas for quantifying reach average roughness based on HAND and flood inundation mapped from remote sensing of previous floods with measured discharges.

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Funding Agencies

This resource was created using funding from the following sources:
Agency Name Award Title Award Number
US Army Corps of Engineers Advancing the integration of terrain analysis and hydrologic modeling using parallel processing W912HZ‐11‐P‐03 and W91238‐15‐P‐0033
National Science Foundation Collaborative Research: SI2-SSI: An Interactive Software Infrastructure for Sustaining Collaborative Community Innovation in the Hydrologic Sciences OAC 1148453
National Science Foundation MRI: Acquisition of a National CyberGIS Facility for Computing and Data-Intensive Geospatial Research and Education 1429699
National Science Foundation XSEDE Extended Collaborative Support Services EAR130008


People or Organizations that contributed technically, materially, financially, or provided general support for the creation of the resource's content but are not considered authors.

Name Organization Address Phone Author Identifiers
David Maidment University of Texas at Austin
Xing Zheng University of Texas at Austin TX, US 5129259889
Yan Liu UIUC/CyberGIS
Irene Garousi-Nejad
Venkatesh Merwade Purdue University
Paola Passalacqua University of Texas at Austin

How to Cite

Tarboton, D. (2019). Impact of Inland Bathymetry on Applications. Flood inundation, channel hydraulic geometry and flood flow estimates, HydroShare,

This resource is shared under the Creative Commons Attribution CC BY.


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