FLOODLE—Simulation and Optimization of Snow Melt and Storm Water Sewage

Project: Other

Project Details

Grant Program

Faculty Development Competitive Research Grant Program 2018-2020

Project Description

Flooding is one of the major causes of material damage and a threat to the life and health of many citizens. The right investments in flood protection can significantly reduce these damages. The problem of wide-spread flooding is evident in Kazakhstan. It has also been identified as one of the problems the city of Astana faces and where innovative scientific, solutions are desirable [4].
Infrastructure is very expensive. Hence, one should get it right the first time and cannot experiment with it. Careful computer-aided planning based on mathematical models and simulations allows to try out different solution in a virtual environment and to find the optimal flooding protection. It also allows to use mathematical optimization techniques to find the optimal solution in an automatic way.
The aim of the project is to create a comprehensive framework for the mathematical modeling and simulations of flooding events caused by snow melt and storm water and the optimization of flood protection measures.
This Spring a flood in Northern Kazakhstan caused about 20 Billion Tenge (60 Million USD) in damage, affecting 3067 houses in 88 settlements [22]. Additionally there was flooding in Southern Kazakhstan. These flood events caused by snow melt are frequently occurring in Spring. Other countries have been recently effected by flooding, too, e.g., the hurricanes in Central and North America caused a combined damage of 100–200 Billion US Dollar. However, our project will focus on modeling and simulating the smaller floods in Kazakhstan caused by snow melts and by storms.
The primary goal is to build a mathematical model allowing to simulate floods and the effect of dams, canals, and sewage. Based on a basic model we will start working on the visualization of the results. In parallel we will also derive an improved model with higher accuracy.
First, the simulation of flooding events allows to show the impact of different solutions. It will also allow us to look in the future of climate change with higher yearly precipitation and higher temperatures in general.
Second, the visualization of the results is important to make them comprehensible to the wider public and to ensure that the mathematical expertise acquired in the project has an impact on political decisions regarding the type, the funding, and the remaining risk of the infrastructure.
We will start our investigation with a small area there we can easily acquire highly accurate street-level data. In the course of the research project we will move towards larger and larger areas making the simulation more and more comprehensive.
The scientific objectives can be summarized by:
• Numerical simulation of snow melt and storm water,
• Dealing with the uncertainty of the parameters, e.g., varying rain fall, unknown surface properties, humidity, and
• Visualization of the results of the simulation and optimization process.
Numerical simulation [6,12,18,21], especially for snow melt [9], urban environments [1], and flood plains at Russian rivers [7], optimization [8], and parameter uncertainty [5,10,20] have made huge progress in recent years. However, these progresses have not fully transferred into efficient decision making processes. With the help of numerical simulation one can make better decisions with respect to protection levels, costs, and environmental impact. This multi-objective or Pareto optimization problem [19] has different concurrent objectives and thus the best trade-off between them has to be found.
StatusCurtailed
Effective start/end date1/9/183/6/18

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