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Continuous Rainfall-Runoff Modeling

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Created: Dec 03, 2016 at 9:12 a.m.
Last updated: Dec 03, 2016 at 9:16 a.m.
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This project describes a case study of continuous rainfall-runoff modeling in part of Red Butte Creek watershed, Salt Lake City, Utah using ArcGIS and the Hydrologic Engineering Center – Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS) version 4.1 to estimate runoff in the red butte creek. ArcGIS tools are used to process a DEM to delineate watershed, stream network, and extract other watershed parameter and characteristic that could be used as input for many hydrological models. In this study, a continuous soil moisture accounting (SMA) and temperature index (Degree-day) snowmelt methods were used to simulate the long-term relationship between rainfall, interception, surface storage, infiltration, snowmelt, runoff, ground water percolation and evapotranspiration. Simple canopy, simple surface, Muskingum, Clark Unit hydrograph, recession, and Priestley Taylor were used for canopy, surface, routing, transform, base flow, and evapotranspiration methods respectively. The objective of this project is to evaluate the performance and potentiality of the HMS with the SMA and temperature index algorithms on a small part of red butte creek. The SMA and temperature index algorithms in HEC-HMS was calibrated using 1-year streamflow data from Feb 2014 to Feb 2015. Sensitivity analysis of model parameters has been conducted. ATI-Melt rate function and maximum infiltration rate were found to be most sensitive parameters within snowmelt and SMA methods for this watershed, respectively. Statistical evaluation was conducted to determine the performance of the HEC-HMS model and found to be Nash-Sutcliffe Efficiency EFC = 0.796. Overall, the temperature index and SMA procedure in the HEC-HMS conceptual model performed satisfactorily and can be used for long-term runoff modeling in the red butte creek.

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How to Cite

Limbu, S. (2016). Continuous Rainfall-Runoff Modeling, HydroShare,

This resource is shared under the Creative Commons Attribution CC BY.


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