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Scientists from the University of Wrocław have finished the work on a modern early warning system against floods. Soon, HydroProg will be sending automatic messages about a potential risk of flooding to companies and institutions. It forecasts high water level thanks to the data gathered from a network of measurement stations.

The system is based on, so called, Combination Forecast, which is the resultant of three hydrological models.

“Usually, one model shows underestimation, whereas the second one overestimation. Our system takes values from each model and combines them creating one, reliable forecast,” says Professor Tomasz Niedzielski, project leader.

Our scientists have been successfully testing the system for eight years in the Kłodzko Basin, as there is a greater chance of flooding due to a mountainous area. They have created a website for the experimental version of the programme, which can be already used by people living in this region. The scientists have also done tests in the Upper and Middle Oder River Basin. They assert that, in the future, the system can be used in any place in the world.

In the Kłodzko Basin, it creates prognoses of the water level and can warn against  flood up to three days in advance. The exact time depends on the type of river basin. Long-term forecasts refer to the bigger ones and those situated in lowlands.

Apart from the information system, the key element of the programme are the measuring stations. The technology recently developed at the University of Wrocław proved high accuracy both in the case of low and high water levels.

The system has been prepared to be launched in two versions. The first one includes hydrological-meteorological measurement station together with the HydroProg flood protection. The second and cheaper one contains only the protection, which may also work based on the data from already existing measurement networks.

One of the features of the programme is that it can be easily maintained and used. That increases its chances to be widely used locally and abroad, thanks to which it may lead to the mitigation of negative effects of intensive rainfalls that result in quick increase of rivers’ water level.

The system was created thanks to the help of the National Science Centre and the National Centre for Research and Development.

Published by: Dariusz Tomaszczyk

7 Jul 2020

last modification: 8 Jul 2020