Simplification of one-dimensional hydraulic networks by automated processes evaluated on 1D/2D deterministic flood models

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Evaluation of pluvial flood risk is often based on computations using 1D/2D urban flood models. However, guidelines on choice of model complexity are missing, especially for one-dimensional (1D) network models. This study presents a new automatic approach for simplification of 1D hydraulic networks (SAHM) using trimming and merging techniques, with performance evaluated in a 1D/2D case study. Decreasing the number of elements in the 1D model by 66% yielded a 35% decrease in computation time of the coupled 1D/2D simulation. The simplifications increased flow in some downstream branches and removing nodes eliminated connection to some areas. This promoted errors in two-dimensional (2D) flood results with changes in spatial location of flooding in the reduced 1D/2D models. Applying delayed rain inputs to compensate for changes in travel time and preserving network volume by expanding node diameters did not improve overall results. Investigations on the expected annual damages (EAD) showed that differences in EAD are smaller than deviations in the simulated flooded areas, suggesting that spatial changes are limited to local displacements. Probably, minor improvements of the simplification procedure will further improve results of the reduced models.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Hydroinformatics
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)686-700
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • 1D/2D urban flood model
  • computation time
  • flood damage cost
  • hydraulic network
  • model reduction

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