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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  26 Jun 2020

26 Jun 2020

Review status
This preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

A Tri-Approach for Diagnosing Gridded Precipitation Datasets for Watershed Glacio-Hydrological Simulation in Mountain Regions

Muhammad Shafeeque1,2 and Luo Yi1,2,3 Muhammad Shafeeque and Luo Yi
  • 1Key Lab of Ecosystem Network Observation and Modelling, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 100101 Beijing, China
  • 2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 100049 Beijing, China
  • 3CAS Research Center for Ecology and Environment of Central Asia, Urumqi, China

Abstract. In mountain regions, validation and local correction of gridded precipitation datasets (GPDs) are pre-requisites for glacio-hydrological simulations. However, insufficient observed data and glacial involvement make it a complicated task in glacierized watersheds. To diagnose the potential problems in GPDs from multiple perspectives and provide directions for their correction, a Tri-approach framework, consisting of statistical analysis, physical diagnosis, and practical simulation, is proposed. Truc-Budyko theory is introduced into this framework, which can identify the actual under- or over-estimation of GPDs based on watershed water-energy balance, diagnose their possible causes, and provide directions for local correction. This framework was applied to the glacierized Upper Indus Basin (UIB) for evaluating GPDs, including APHRODITE, CFSR, PGMFD, TRMM, and HAR, against adjusted observed precipitation (OBS), specific runoff, and glacier mass balance over varying periods during 1951–2017. The Spatial Processes in HYdrology (SPHY) model was used to simulate the hydrology and glacier changes (2001–2007). The results suggest that (a) patterns of inter- and intra-annual variations of OBS precipitation were better captured by APHRODITE (CC > 0.6), but it was underestimated (−40 %), (b) UIB was characterized as Leaky catchment based on overestimated CFSR (106 %) and HAR (77 %), indicating positive glacier storage changes (0.37 and 0.21 m w.e. yr−1, respectively). In contrast, UIB was characterized as Gaining watershed for remaining underestimated datasets, indicating negative storage changes (−0.42 to −0.34 m w.e. yr−1). (c) For constant mass balance, the simulated runoff was overestimated in SPHY_CFSR (66 %) and SPHY_HAR (53 %), whereas it was underestimated for SPHY_APHRODITE (−41 %), SPHY_PGMFD (−26 %), and SPHY_TRMM (−33 %). It highlights that evaluated GPDs could not generally meet the requirements of the rational output of glacier mass balance and streamflow concurrently. The physical diagnosis directs local correction based on under- and over-estimation. The practical simulation explores the extent of expected uncertainties in intra/inter-annual characteristics of glacio-hydrology.

Muhammad Shafeeque and Luo Yi

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Muhammad Shafeeque and Luo Yi

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Short summary
Validation of gridded precipitation datasets (GPDs) is inevitable in mountain glacierized basins but not easy due to involvement of glaciers in hydrology. A Tri-approach is proposed to diagnose potential problems in GPDs from multiple perspectives. Truc-Budyko theory is introduced in it, which can identify actual under/over-estimation of GPDs based on water-energy balance, diagnose causes, and direct correction. Practical simulation helps to explore uncertainties in simulated glacio-hydrology.
Validation of gridded precipitation datasets (GPDs) is inevitable in mountain glacierized basins...