The effects of spatial discretization on performances and parameters of urban hydrological model

Qing Chang, So Kazama, Yoshiya Touge, Shunsuke Aita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Selecting a proper spatial resolution for urban rainfall runoff modeling was not a trivial issue because it could affect the model outputs. Recently, the development of remote sensing technology and increasingly available data source had enabled rainfall runoff process to be modeled at detailed and microscales. However, the models with less complexity might have equally good performance with less model establishment and computation time. This study attempted to explore the impact of model spatial resolution on model performance and parameters. Models with different discretization degree were built up on the basis of actual drainage networks, urban parcels and specific land use. The results showed that there was very little difference in the total runoff volumes while peak flows showed obvious scale effects which could be up to 30%. Generally, model calibration could compensate the scale effect. The calibrated models with different resolution showed similar performances. The consideration of effective impervious area (EIA) as a calibration parameter marginally increased performance of the calibration period but also slightly decreased performance in the validation period which indicated the importance of detailed EIA identification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-528
Number of pages12
JournalWater Science and Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Aug 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Parameters
  • SWMM
  • Spatial resolution
  • Urban hydrology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology


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