Our research and development work has beneficial applications throughout the world; solving water-related issues from the arid sand dunes of northeastern Africa to the rain drenched tropical forests of the Rio Chagres in Panama.

HRC Global Flash Flood Program
(Program Video, News and Outreach)




Sponsors: NOAA
StartDate: 01/2003
PI/Co-PIs: PI: Dr. Nicholas Graham, Co-PI: Dr. K. Georgakakos

We use hydrologic modeling and a simplified decision support system to investigate the benefits of using climate forecast information for the management of the Panama Canal. Seasonal flow forecasts are obtained using sea surface temperature estimates. The reservoir management model is being developed in close collaboration with Panama Canal Authority operations staff, and embodies the goals and constraints of canal operations in terms of lockage, desired release schedules (for power generation), portable water and flood control. A control algorithm is used to minimize deviations from the target goals while minimizing violations of the constraints. Various sensitivity analyses are being conducted to compare the benefits using current release targets to those obtained using more flexible adaptive targets depending on seasonal forecasts.

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