Improving the precision of Snowmelt runoff simulation and sensitivity analysis of parameters and climatic variables in the Tamar basin, Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Engineering Department of Water Resources, Department of Irrigation and Water Engineering, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, University of Tehran

2 Irrigation and Reclamation Engineering Department, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering & Technology, College of Agriculture & Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran


Global warming has changed rainfall patterns and reduced snow sources. The main objective of this research was to investigate the impact of temperature increase on snowmelt and river runoff in hot months of the year along with analysis of climate variables in Tamar basin, Iran. For this purpose, the snow cover area was extracted from the daily images of Modis Satellite, based on elevation. Then, the study area was divided into four districts. Discharge flow measured data of Tamar hydrometric station, precipitation of Qarnaq and average temperature of Gidagh stations were used from 2013 to 2016 for calibration and from 2017 to 2019 for verification, to simulate snowmelt runoff. Snow cover extent, in calibration stage and january, reached the highest values of 28% and 28.8% in the third and fourth districts, respectively. Furthermore, in the verification stage, the third and fourth districts in February had the highest percentages of 45.8 and 30.2, respectively. Comparison of simulated and measured runoff data revealed that the portion of runoff due to snowmelt is significant by passing from February to April. So that the highest increase (from 1.8% to 39.1%) in runoff amount was corresponded to the water year of 2018-2019. The highest and the lowest percentages of snowmelt in water years of 2014-2015 and 2017-2018 were 19 and 3.3 percent, respectively. The results of sensitivity analysis of model parameters including temperature decrease rate, critical temperature, delay time, degree-day factor, X and Y coefficients, precipitation runoff coefficient and snow runoff coefficient showed that the rainfall coefficient and X parameters are the most effective parameters. The effect of temperature and rainfall on runoff process was varied in different months.


Main Subjects

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