Journal cover Journal topic
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 22, 2211-2224, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-22-2211-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Technical note
09 Apr 2018
Technical note: Representing glacier geometry changes in a semi-distributed hydrological model
Jan Seibert1,2, Marc J. P. Vis1, Irene Kohn3, Markus Weiler3, and Kerstin Stahl3 1Department of Geography, University of Zurich, Zurich, 8057, Switzerland
2Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden
3Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources, University of Freiburg, 79098 Freiburg, Germany
Abstract. Glaciers play an important role in high-mountain hydrology. While changing glacier areas are considered of highest importance for the understanding of future changes in runoff, glaciers are often only poorly represented in hydrological models. Most importantly, the direct coupling between the simulated glacier mass balances and changing glacier areas needs feasible solutions. The use of a complex glacier model is often not possible due to data and computational limitations. The Δh parameterization is a simple approach to consider the spatial variation of glacier thickness and area changes. Here, we describe a conceptual implementation of the Δh parameterization in the semi-distributed hydrological model HBV-light, which also allows for the representation of glacier advance phases and for comparison between the different versions of the implementation. The coupled glacio-hydrological simulation approach, which could also be implemented in many other semi-distributed hydrological models, is illustrated based on an example application.
Citation: Seibert, J., Vis, M. J. P., Kohn, I., Weiler, M., and Stahl, K.: Technical note: Representing glacier geometry changes in a semi-distributed hydrological model, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 22, 2211-2224, https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-22-2211-2018, 2018.
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Short summary
In many glacio-hydrological models glacier areas are assumed to be constant over time, which is a crucial limitation. Here we describe a novel approach to translate mass balances as simulated by the (glacio)hydrological model into glacier area changes. We combined the Δh approach of Huss et al. (2010) with the bucket-type model HBV and introduced a lookup table approach, which also allows periods with advancing glaciers to be represented, which is not possible with the original Huss method.
In many glacio-hydrological models glacier areas are assumed to be constant over time, which is...
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