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Integrated Geospatial Analysis and Hydrological Modeling for Peak Flow and Volume Simulation in Rwanda

State Key Laboratory of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 818 South Beijing Road, Urumqi 830011, China
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Faculty of Environmental Sciences, University of Lay Adventists of Kigali (UNILAK), Kigali P.O. Box 6392, Rwanda
Ili Station for Watershed Ecosystem Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xinyuan 835800, China
CAS Research Center for Ecology and Environment of Central Asia, 818 South Beijing Road, Urumqi 830011, China
Key Laboratory of Water Cycle and Utilization in Arid Zone, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Urumqi 830011, China
College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, University of Rwanda, Center of Excellence in Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management, Huye P.O. Box 117, Rwanda
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Alexander Shiklomanov
Water 2021, 13(20), 2926;
Received: 13 September 2021 / Revised: 3 October 2021 / Accepted: 12 October 2021 / Published: 18 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrological Response to Climate Change)
The ability to adequately and continually assess the hydrological catchment response to extreme rainfall events in a timely manner is a prerequisite component in flood-forecasting and mitigation initiatives. Owing to the scarcity of data, this particular subject has captured less attention in Rwanda. However, semi-distributed hydrological models have become standard tools used to investigate hydrological processes in data-scarce regions. Thus, this study aimed to develop a hydrological modeling system for the Nyabarongo River catchment in Rwanda, and assess its hydrological response to rainfall events through discharged flow and volume simulation. Initially, the terrain Digital Elevation Model (DEM) was pre-processed using a geospatial tool (HEC-GeoHMS) for catchment delineation and the generation of input physiographic parameters was applied for hydrological modeling system (HEC-HMS) setup. The model was then calibrated and validated at the outlet using sixteen events extracted from daily hydro-meteorological data (rainfall and flow) for the rainy seasons of the country. More than in other events, the 15th, 9th, 13th and 5th events showed high peak flows with simulated values of 177.7 m3s−1, 171.7 m3s−1, 169.9 m3s−1, and 166.9 m3s−1, respectively. The flow fluctuations exhibited a notable relation to rainfall variations following long and short rainy seasons. Comparing the observed and simulated hydrographs, the findings also unveiled the ability of the model to simulate the discharged flow and volume of the Nyabarongo catchment very well. The evaluated model’s performance exposed a high mean Nash Sutcliffe Efficiency (NSE) of 81.4% and 84.6%, with correlation coefficients (R2) of 88.4% and 89.8% in calibration and validation, respectively. The relative errors for the peak flow (5.5% and 7.7%) and volume (3.8% and 4.6%) were within the acceptable range for calibration and validation, respectively. Generally, HEC-HMS findings provided a satisfactory computing proficiency and necessitated fewer data inputs for hydrological simulation under changing rainfall patterns in the Nyabarongo River catchment. This study provides an understanding and deepening of the knowledge of river flow mechanisms, which can assist in establishing systems for river monitoring and early flood warning in Rwanda. View Full-Text
Keywords: discharged flow; flood; HEC-HMS; hydrology; nyabarongo; Rwanda discharged flow; flood; HEC-HMS; hydrology; nyabarongo; Rwanda
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mind’je, R.; Li, L.; Kayumba, P.M.; Mindje, M.; Ali, S.; Umugwaneza, A. Integrated Geospatial Analysis and Hydrological Modeling for Peak Flow and Volume Simulation in Rwanda. Water 2021, 13, 2926.

AMA Style

Mind’je R, Li L, Kayumba PM, Mindje M, Ali S, Umugwaneza A. Integrated Geospatial Analysis and Hydrological Modeling for Peak Flow and Volume Simulation in Rwanda. Water. 2021; 13(20):2926.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mind’je, Richard, Lanhai Li, Patient Mindje Kayumba, Mapendo Mindje, Sikandar Ali, and Adeline Umugwaneza. 2021. "Integrated Geospatial Analysis and Hydrological Modeling for Peak Flow and Volume Simulation in Rwanda" Water 13, no. 20: 2926.

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