Abstract

In traditional flood frequency analysis, a minimum of 30 observations is required to guarantee the accuracy of design results with an allowable uncertainty; however, there has not been a recommendation for the requirement on the length of data in NFFA (nonstationary flood frequency analysis). Therefore, this study has been carried out with three aims: (i) to evaluate the predictive capabilities of nonstationary (NS) and stationary (ST) models with varying flood record lengths; (ii) to examine the impacts of flood record lengths on the NS and ST design floods and associated uncertainties; and (iii) to recommend the probable requirements of flood record length in NFFA. To achieve these objectives, 20 stations with record length longer than 100 years in Norway were selected and investigated by using both GEV (generalized extreme value)-ST and GEV-NS models with linearly varying location parameter (denoted by GEV-NS0). The results indicate that the fitting quality and predictive capabilities of GEV-NS0 outperform those of GEV-ST models when record length is approximately larger than 60 years for most stations, and the stability of the GEV-ST and GEV-NS0 is improved as record lengths increase. Therefore, a minimum of 60 years of flood observations is recommended for NFFA for the selected basins in Norway.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • This study evaluates the predictive capabilities of nonstationary (NS) and stationary (ST) models with varying flood record lengths.

  • This study examines the impacts of flood record lengths on the NS and ST design floods and associated uncertainties.

  • A minimum of 60 years of flood observations is recommended for NFFA for the selected basins in Norway.

This content is only available as a PDF.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY 4.0), which permits copying, adaptation and redistribution, provided the original work is properly cited (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).