Fusing morphometric characteristics with extreme precipitation indices for identifying the most vulnerable sub-basin at risk of flooding

Dharmaveer Singh, Kunal Karan, Sudhir Kumar Singh, Pankaj Chauhan, Ronny Berndtsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fluvial floods are commonly studied as an occurrence at the level of a specific basin and are speculated to be closely related to the basin's morphometry. It is possible to identify and rank sub-basins based on how susceptible they are to fluvial flooding events using morphometric criteria. However, one of the key causes that triggers fluvial flooding is the increase in precipitation extremes and changes to their patterns. In this study, influence of morphometric factors and extreme precipitation events on the hydrological responses of the Brahmani River, India as well as their sensitivity to fluvial flooding, are investigated to identify the most vulnerable sub-basin in a catchment. The morphometric parameters were calculated from a digital elevation model (DEM), and the change in trend of extreme precipitation indices was detected using precipitation data of period 1991 to 2021. Furthermore, the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) was used to determine the frequency of wet cycles on time scale of 1, 3, 12, and 24 months, as well as their link to fluvial flooding. The two sub-basins of the catchment that are most vulnerable to river flooding are recognised as Noamundi and Gomlai based on morphometric criteria. However, analysis of SPI and extreme precipitation indices showed that the Jenapur sub-basin is the most vulnerable to flooding. It is also corroborated with analytic hierarchy process (AHP) based weighted overlay analysis and historical flood records. The outcomes will assist researchers in better understanding the mechanisms causing flooding in the Brahamni River Basin and in developing flood mitigation practices for the most vulnerable Jenapur sub-basin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-56
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Hydro-Environment Research
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Sept

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the European Space Agency, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the United States Geological Society EROS Data Centre, and the Indian Meteorological Department (Pune, India) for using their freely accessible data. We also extend our gratitude to two anonymous reviewers and editors for their constructive comments and great support during the revision of this paper. This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors. DS conceptualized the research problem, contributed to data analysis and interpretation, supervised the entire research activity from its inception to the completion and wrote the research paper. KK contributed in collection and processing of data. SKS and PC assisted in analysis part. RB reviewed the final draft and corrected the manuscript wherever it was necessary. The data used for this study is freely available and can be obtained from their respective websites. For any further query, contact to Dr. Dharmaveer Singh ([email protected]), Symbiosis Institute of Geoinformatics, Symbiosis International (Deemed University), Pune-411016.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 International Association for Hydro-environment Engineering and Research, Asia Pacific Division

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
  • Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences

Free keywords

  • Brahmani River Basin
  • Fluvial flooding
  • Morphometry
  • Standardized precipitation index


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