Articles | Volume 32
11 Dec 2012
 | 11 Dec 2012

Hydrological simulation of extreme flood scenarios for operational flood management at the Middle Elbe river

M. Helms, J. Ihringer, and R. Mikovec

Abstract. Operational flood management at the Middle Elbe river requires comprehensive knowledge about the magnitude and characteristics of possible extreme flood events. Since these events are not sufficiently included in available historical records, an extended sample of extreme flood events was generated by hydrological scenario simulation. Present paper emphasises simulations in the German part of the catchment of the Middle Elbe river and introduces the stochastic-conceptual precipitation-runoff model which was developed for this task. After validation of this model and its coupling with the weather forecast model COSMO and hydraulic-numerical models, a set of 25 flood scenarios could be simulated and provided for a planning of flood protection measures. Analysis of simulated scenarios reveal that extreme flood events at the Mulde and Middle Elbe rivers may have a wide spectrum of characteristics and may considerably exceed the magnitude of past flood events (e.g., those of August 2002).