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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2019-72
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2019-72
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 13 Feb 2019

Research article | 13 Feb 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS). The manuscript was not accepted for further review after discussion.

Toward high-spatial resolution hydrological modeling for China: Calibrating the VIC model

Bowen Zhu1,2, Xianhong Xie1,2, Chuiyu Lu3, Shanshan Meng1,2, Yi Yao1,2, and Yibing Wang1,2 Bowen Zhu et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Remote Sensing Science, Jointly Sponsored by Beijing Normal University and Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100875, China
  • 2Beijing Engineering Research Center for Global Land Remote Sensing Products, Institute of Remote Sensing Science and Engineering, Faculty of Geographical Science, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
  • 3China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research, State Key Laboratory of Simulation and Regulation of Water Cycle in River Basin, Beijing 100038, China

Abstract. High-resolution hydrological modeling is important for understanding fundamental terrestrial processes associated with the effects of climate variability and human activities on water resources availability. However, the spatial resolution of current hydrological modeling studies is mostly constrained to a relative coarse resolution (~ 10–100 km) and they are therefore unable to address many of the water-related issues facing society. In this study, a high resolution (0.0625º, ~ 6 km) hydrological modeling for China was developed based on the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model, spanning the period from January of 1970 to June of 2016. Distinct from other modeling studies, the parameters in the VIC model were updated using newly developed soil and vegetation datasets, and an effective parameter estimation scheme was used to transfer parameters from gauged to ungauged basins. Simulated runoff, evapotranspiration (ET), and soil moisture (SM) were extensively evaluated using in-situ observations, which indicated that there was a great improvement due to the updated model parameters. The spatial and temporal distributions of simulated ET and SM were also consistent with remote sensing retrievals. Moreover, this high-resolution modeling is capable of capturing flood and drought events with respect to their timing, duration, and spatial extent. This study shows that the hydrological datasets produced from this high-resolution modeling are useful for understanding long-term climate change and water resource security. It also has great potential for coupling with the China Land Data Simulation System to achieve real-time hydrological forecasts across China.

Bowen Zhu et al.
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Interactive discussion
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Bowen Zhu et al.
Bowen Zhu et al.
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Short summary
The hydrological modeling of China have been limited to spatial resolutions of 10 km or greater, rendering it impossible to assess local conditions. In our study, we developed a hydrological modeling based on VIC model at a much finer spatial scale (~ 6 km). The simulated runoff, SM and ET were extensively evaluated using observations and remote sensing data. This high-resolution modeling is capable of capturing flood and drought events with respect to their timing, duration, and spatial extent.
The hydrological modeling of China have been limited to spatial resolutions of 10 km or greater,...
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