Present and Future Requirements for Using and Communicating Hydrometeorological Ensemble Prediction Systems for Short-, Medium-, and Long-Term Applications

  • Geoff PegramEmail author
  • Damien Raynaud
  • Eric Sprokkereef
  • Martin Ebel
  • Silke Rademacher
  • Jonas Olsson
  • Cristina Alionte-Eklund
  • Barbro Johansson
  • Göran Lindström
  • Henrik Spångmyr
Reference work entry


This chapter provides representative examples for using and communicating hydrometeorological ensemble prediction systems (HEPS) for short-, medium-, and long-term applications. The needs of the specific end users in disaster management, flood forecasting centers, and water management are highlighted.

In the first section, the requirements are presented for a nowcasting system based on radar data designed to provide sufficient lead time for decision makers responsible for urban areas. The generation of rainfall ensembles from radar measurements is described using the so-called string of beads methodology. The aspects required by decision makers for flood management are followed by the technical set-up and constraints.

The second section illustrates how short-term HEPS can contribute to increasing the predictability of flash flood events on a regional scale with complementary indicators to higher-resolution local information systems based on short-term forecasts and observations.

In the third section, the benefits of hydrological ensembles are elaborated for flood forecasting and shipping for a well-controlled, trans-national river basin such as the river Rhine. For several years, medium-range ensemble prediction systems have been explored for flood forecasting in medium to large river basins such as the Rhine.

The last section describes the requirements of HEPS for water management and how they are used at the example of hydropower in Sweden. In snow-dominated hydrological regimes such as in Scandinavia, reservoirs need to be carefully managed in order to have enough capacity for storing spring flood volume, while keeping enough water for securing the required power generation. The chapter concludes with the strengths and the limitations of HEPS for various applications.


Ensemble prediction systems Radar Trans-national river basins Decision support 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoff Pegram
    • 1
    Email author
  • Damien Raynaud
    • 2
  • Eric Sprokkereef
    • 3
  • Martin Ebel
    • 4
  • Silke Rademacher
    • 5
  • Jonas Olsson
    • 6
  • Cristina Alionte-Eklund
    • 6
  • Barbro Johansson
    • 6
  • Göran Lindström
    • 6
  • Henrik Spångmyr
    • 6
  1. 1.Satellite Applications and Hydrology Group, School of Civil Engineering, Surveying and Construction ManagementUniversity of KwaZulu-NatalDurbanSouth Africa
  2. 2.Universite Joseph FourierGrenobleFrance
  3. 3.Ministry of Infrastructure and the EnvironmentWater Management Centre of the Netherlands, River Forecasting ServiceLelystadThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Bundesamt für UmweltIttigenSwitzerland
  5. 5.German Federal Institute of Hydrology (BfG)KoblenzGermany
  6. 6.Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological InstituteNorrköpingSweden

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