Planning for Floods & Droughts: Intro to AI-Driven Hydrological Modeling (Tutorials Track) Spotlight

Kshitij Tayal (Oak Ridge National Lab); Arvind Renganathan (University of Minnesota); Dan Lu (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

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Climate Science & Modeling Oceans & Marine Systems Data Mining Time-series Analysis


This tutorial presents an AI-driven hydrological modeling approach to advance predictions of extreme hydrological events, including floods and droughts, which are of significant socioeconomic concerns. Traditionally, physics-based hydrological models have been the mainstay for simulating rainfall-runoff dynamics and forecasting streamflow. These models, while effective, are constrained by limitations in our systematic understanding and an inability to incorporate heterogeneous data. Recently, the surge in availability of multi-scale, multi-modal hydrological data has spurred the adoption of data-driven machine learning (ML) techniques. These methods have shown promising predictive performance. However, they often struggle with generalization and reliability, especially under climate change. This tutorial introduces physics-informed ML, by leveraging data and domain knowledge, to improve prediction accuracy and trustworthiness. We will delve into uncertainty quantification methods for probabilistic predictions that are vital for climate-resilient planning in managing floods and droughts. Participants will be guided through a comprehensive workflow, encompassing data analysis, model construction, and model evaluation. This tutorial is designed to elevate researchers’ understanding of hydrological systems and provide practitioners with robust, climate-resilient water management tools. These tools are instrumental in facilitating informed decision-making, crucial in the context of climate adaptation strategies. Participants will learn: ● Heterogeneous climate and hydrology data analysis ● State-of-the-art neural network models for rainfall-runoff modeling. ● ML model construction, training, validating, and testing ● Multiple ways to build a physics-informed ML model ● Uncertainty quantification in ML model predictions. All code and data will be publicly available for researchers/practitioners to build their own models.

Recorded Talk (direct link)