Articles | Volume 7, issue 6
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 7, 862–876, 2003
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-7-862-2003

Special issue: Hydrological and meteorological aspects of floods in the...

Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 7, 862–876, 2003
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-7-862-2003

  31 Dec 2003

31 Dec 2003

Use of remote sensing for hydrological parameterisation of Alpine catchments

H. Bach1, M. Braun2, G. Lampart1, and W. Mauser2 H. Bach et al.
  • 1VISTA Geowissenschaftliche Fernerkundung GmbH Gabelsbergerstr. 51, D-80333 München, Germany
  • 2University of Munich, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Luisenstrasse 37, D-80333 Munich, Germany
  • Email for corresponding author: bach@vista-geo.de

Abstract. Physically-based water balance models require a realistic parameterisation of land surface characteristics of a catchment. Alpine areas are very complex with strong topographically-induced gradients of environmental conditions, which makes the hydrological parameterisation of Alpine catchments difficult. Within a few kilometres the water balance of a region (mountain peak or valley) can differ completely. Hence, remote sensing is invaluable for retrieving hydrologically relevant land surface parameters. The assimilation of the retrieved information into the water balance model PROMET is demonstrated for the Toce basin in Piemonte/Northern Italy. In addition to land use, albedos and leaf area indices were derived from LANDSAT-TM imagery. Runoff, modelled by a water balance approach, agreed well with observations without calibration of the hydrological model.

Keywords: PROMET, fuzzy logic based land use classification, albedo, leaf area index