Urban flood modeling using shallow water equations with depth-dependent anisotropic porosity
The shallow water model with anisotropic porosity conceptually takes into account the unresolved subgrid-scale features, e.g. microtopography or buildings. This enables computationally efficient simulations that can be run on coarser grids, whereas reasonable accuracy is maintained via the introduction of porosity. This article presents a novel numerical model for the depth-averaged equations with anisotropic porosity. The porosity is calculated using the probability mass function of the subgrid-scale features in each cell and updated in each time step. The model is tested in a one-dimensional theoretical benchmark before being evaluated against measurements and high-resolution predictions in three case studies: a dam-break over a triangular bottom sill, a dam-break through an idealized city and a rainfall-runoff event in an idealized urban catchment. The physical processes could be approximated relatively well with the anisotropic porosity shallow water model. The computational resolution influences the porosities calculated at the cell edges and therefore has a large influence on the quality of the solution. The computational time decreased significantly, on average three orders of magnitude, in comparison to the classical high-resolution shallow water model simulation.
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Published in: Journal of Hydrology, 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2016.08.025, Elsevier