Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science
Volume 128 Issue 1 February 2019 Article ID 0002 Research Article
In hydrological models, digital elevation models (DEMs) are being used to extract stream network and delineation of the watershed. DEMs represent elevation surfaces of earth landscape. Spatial resolution refers to the dimension of the cell size representing the area covered on the ground. Spatial resolution is the main parameter of a DEM. The grid cell size of raster DEM has significant effects on derived terrain variables such as slope, aspect, curvature, the wetness index, etc. Selection of appropriate spatial resolution DEM depends on other input data being used in the model, type of application and analysis that needs to be performed, the size of the database and response time. Each DEM contains inherent errors due to the method of acquisition and processing. The accuracy of each DEM varies with spatial resolution. The present paper deals with Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM), TerraSAR-X add-on for Digital Elevation Measurements (TanDEM DEMs) and compares their watershed delineation, slope, stream network and height with ground control points. It was found that the coarse resolution DEM-derived attributes and terrain morphological characteristics were strongly influenced by DEM accuracy. The objective of the present study is to investigate the impact of DEM resolution on topographic parameters and runoff estimation using TanDEM-12, TanDEM-30 and SRTM-90 m with the Soil and Water Assessment Tool. The analysis of the results using different DEM resolutions gave a varied number of sub-basins, Hydrological Response Units (HRUs) and watershed areas. The results were optimum at a specific threshold value as extraction of drainage network has a significant influence on simulated results. The accuracy of DEM is important, as the source of construction of DEM is the main factor causing uncertainty in the output. The results showed variable amounts of runoff at the watershed level, which may be attributed to varied stream lengths, minimum and maximum elevations and sub-basin areas.
Volume 129, 2020
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