Model Parameter Evaluation and Improvement for Real-Time Flood Inundation Mapping Using HAND Model: Iowa Case Study

This is a Preprint and has not been peer reviewed. This is version 2 of this Preprint.


Download Preprint


Zhouyayan Li, Jerry Mount, Ibrahim Demir


In this study, the performance of Height Above Nearest Drainage (HAND) was evaluated in Linn, Jones, Johnson, Cedar, and Muscatine counties in the State of Iowa. The impacts of three model parameters (drainage threshold, water depth, resolution of data) were studied. The effectiveness of improving approaches—variable water depths, community-level analysis, and inner zone was explored. The model performance was compared against flood hazard maps of 100- and 500-year flooding events generated by the Iowa Flood Center. Results showed the Hit Rate, Proportion Correct and Kappa Value reached 0.80 (0.79 for 500-year event), 0.93, and 0.69 (0.70 for 500-year event) respectively, even when no improving approach was involved. The approaches helped Hit Rate improve to 0.88 for both flooding events, and Mixed Index increase by 5.83 % (100-year event) and 5.77 % (500-year event). The study presented how to improve the accuracy of HAND model in a simple and practical way.



Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Hydraulic Engineering


flood modeling, HAND, model improvement, real-time inundation mapping


Published: 2020-07-01 20:45

Last Updated: 2020-08-29 03:45

Older Versions

GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) 2.1

Additional Metadata

Data Availability (Reason not available):
Data used in this study will be integrated into a Web-application for flood modeling, which is under development.

Add a Comment

You must log in to post a comment.


There are no comments or no comments have been made public for this article.