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Water 2017, 9(3), 178; doi:10.3390/w9030178

Drought Characteristic Analysis Based on an Improved PDSI in the Wei River Basin of China

1,2,* and 1,2,*
State Key Laboratory of Water Resources and Hydropower Engineering Science, Wuhan University, No. 8 Donghu South Road, Wuhan 430072, China
Hubei Provincial Collaborative Innovation Center for Water Resources Security, Wuhan 430072, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Athanasios Loukas
Received: 10 November 2016 / Revised: 20 February 2017 / Accepted: 27 February 2017 / Published: 1 March 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [16535 KB, uploaded 1 March 2017]   |  


In this study, to improve the efficiency of the original Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI_original), we coupled the Soil and Water Assessment tool (SWAT) and PDSI_original to construct a drought index called PDSI_SWAT. The constructed PDSI_SWAT is applied in the Wei River Basin (WRB) of China during 1960–2012. The comparison of the PDSI_SWAT with four other commonly used drought indices reveals the effectiveness of the PDSI_SWAT in describing the drought propagation processes in WRB. The whole WRB exhibits a dry trend, with more significant trends in the northern, southeastern and western WRB than the remaining regions. Furthermore, the drought frequencies show that drought seems to occur more likely in the northern part than the southern part of WRB. The principle component analysis method based on the PDSI_SWAT reveals that the whole basin can be further divided into three distinct sub-regions with different drought variability, i.e., the northern, southeastern and western part. Additionally, these three sub-regions are also consistent with the spatial pattern of drought shown by the drought frequency. The wavelet transform analysis method indicates that the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events have strong impacts on inducing droughts in the WRB. The results of this study could be beneficial for a scientific water resources management and drought assessment in the current study area and also provide a valuable reference for other areas with similar climatic characteristics. View Full-Text
Keywords: drought variability; SWAT model; principal component analysis; wavelet transform; Wei River Basin drought variability; SWAT model; principal component analysis; wavelet transform; Wei River Basin

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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. (CC BY 4.0).

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Zou, L.; Xia, J.; She, D. Drought Characteristic Analysis Based on an Improved PDSI in the Wei River Basin of China. Water 2017, 9, 178.

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