Comparison of short-term rainfall forecasts for model-based flow prediction in urban drainage systems

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Forecast-based flow prediction in drainage systems can be used to implement real-time control of drainage systems. This study compares two different types of rainfall forecast – a radar rainfall extrapolation-based nowcast model and a numerical weather prediction model. The models are applied as input to an urban runoff model predicting the inlet flow to a waste water treatment plant. The modelled flows are auto-calibrated against real-time flow observations in order to certify the best possible forecast. Results show that it is possible to forecast flows with a lead time of 24 h. The best performance of the system is found using the radar nowcast for the short lead times and the weather model for larger lead times.

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