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The presentstudy is an update of the 1990 study to include: additional data up to 1995. hence. A potential frequency aquifers distribution of low-flow series must. winter and spring seasons ue usuallydry causing the minimum flow occurring generally in spring season.7). lowest flow condition generally occurs earlier than in the rivers lacking snowmelt contribution to the riverflows(Figure 1. stations 3. depletion in soil moisture.1 Low-FlowCharacferisfics Significantdecrease in low-flow on a stream leads to drought. Rivers ure mainly recharged by groundwater during minimum flow periods. ffid decline in agriculture productionwittr high consequences on economy and social developments including human miseries. be able to take such deviation into acc0unt. Due to snowmelt in snow-fed rivers. the assessmentof low-flow discharges on a river at any location primarily dependson three cases: adequate data" inadequate data and missing data. Because of the drawdown of upper aquifers. Other applications of low-flows include water qualitymanagementapplications. The well-known method of hydrological analogy is an appropriate tool in the case of inadequate hydrometric data. and monthly duration was developed by the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology and Water and Energy Commission Secretariate in 1980s (WECS/DHM.3) and 51 hydrometric stations(Figure 1. The period is also highly dependent on the ice and snowmelt situation in the headwater areas.7-day. The scope of this method may be wider in respect of the estimation of low flows.4). Hence.additional stations.30-day. a river is recharged from deep with less water storageduring extremely dry years. A method for assessing low-flow characteristicsfor l-day. &d depletion of groundwater levels. Suchconditions lead to scarcity in drinking water. As in the case of flood flow estimates. determination of minimum downstream release requirements from water resources projects etc. In a region affected by continental monsoons. and improved physiographic and hlpsometric data derivedfrom GIS tools. reduction in reservoir levels. 29 .the flow pattern is highly influenced by the hydrology of a river basin. The study used data from 309 precipitation-gauglng (Figure 1.' This wes thefirst attempt in Nepal for assessinglow-flows of different recurrence intervals. Estimation of low-flow status on a river is important for designing a single purpose or multipurpose water resourcesproject considering extemeconditionsregarding the availability of adequatewater supply. Thestudyused data for 44 stations with a period covering the period from 1963 to 1985. 1990) published in 1990 as a report titled 'Methodologies for Estimating Hydrologic Characteristics of UngaugedLocations in Nepal.3 LOW-FLOW Low-flow statisticsare essentialin water supply planning to determine allowable watertransfersand withdrawals.

I] 3. 3. One-day low-flow computed by the macro is the lowest value obtained from eachyear'sdaily streamflow data. The Extreme Valt presentedin l il i Q.7-day.T.= axix{ x1'--. 1997) and in South Africa (Smakhtin and Hughes. The procedure used to calculation 30-day low-flow was similar to the procedureused in 7-day low-flow computation.-flou''series"Tlrricai J V . and monthly minimum valueswere obtained for eachyear developinga seriesfor eachduration..A method deveiopedin 1982by Sir MacDonald and Partners titled 'Medium lrrigation Project Design Manual' is basedon the data of a single streamflow measurement during a dry period to ger long-termcharacteristics of minimum flows (MacDonald1990). L997). Liter literature sh T)p..3 Low-FIow Derivation Daily dischargedata available at DHM were the sourceof data for the derivation of low-flow values for different durations.3. 1980).literature on low-flow studiesis limited. Seven-daylow-flow is the minimum value obtained from the consecutive seven-day averages. X:. 30-day minimum and monthly minimum flows... Multivariate relationship of low flows to ciimatic and basin characteristics are the basic approachapplied in most of thesestudiesro developmethodologies for ungauged basins. Hence a catchment area is usually consideredas a universal parameterwhile computing low flows.30-day. A catchmentarea acts as a reservoir for precipitation. program LOJ Canada. The pattern of equationconsideredin this study has the following iorm: t ! Iow-flow se minimum.. in Russia (Artemieva.. where Qr : T...p.2 LiteratureReview Compared to flood-flow studies.year minimum flow Xr. An EXCEL based macro was developed to extract l-day minimum.A few regional studieson low flows found in recent literatureinclude the Low-Flow' Studies in the UK (IH. X: : lndependentvariablesinfluencing low flows &d.. III c distrihurion r probability c Fouloula-Ge Distr i:rrtion tn tnrs stud boundedat tl The . Monthly minimum flow is the minimum value obtained from the seriesof twelve monthly values. 7-day minimum.: regression coefficients (J. One of the earlier studieson low flows by Riggs (1972) discusses the natureof low-flow frequency curves presentinga multiple regressionapproachin regionalization. other parametershave also been considered in the regressionanalysis for arriving at the best equation for predicting low-fiow. The macro produced output in a format..4 Low-FIowFrequencyAnalysis Estimation of low-flows from stream flow records is generally done by fitting a probability distribution to the annuai minirnurn averagelou. Besides the catchment area.One-day.. which could directly be used as input for the low-flow frequencyanalysis.

the Log Pearson Type III distribution.low-flowseries consideredin this study are: l-day. 1992). Stedinger.30-day and monthly minimum. The results of the run for all the stations are presented in Table 3. Available literature shows that the three-parameter Weibull Distribution. Jr . The low-flow frequency analysis was carried out using a computer program LOFLOW developed by the Inland Water Directorate of Environment Canada. 7-day. The program computes low-flow values for a given duration using Extreme Value Type III distribution. Vogel & Foufoula-Georgiou. and two-parameter and three-parameter Lognormal distribution are the widely used distributions in severalparts of the world for the probability distribution analysis of low flows (Riggs. 1982. was selectedfor application in this study.1 for different durations. The Extreme Value Type III distribution (Weibull Distribution) usedin most of the regions of the world. This distribution is particularly suitable for discharge values bounded at the lower end such as the casesof ephemeralrivers. Literature on low-flow frequency analysis is relatively sparse.

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7-DAY 2.YEAR LOW-FLOW @ ca E 3 o o o t C) (g q Qo LL IV 95% Cl 95% Pl '100 200 SquareRoot[Area(km2)below5000m] -Year7 -daYlow-flow' LOW-FLOW 2O-YEAR a c) E 3ro o LL o o te o $ q Q0 95% cl -95%Pl SquareRoot[Area(km2)below5000m] low-flow' ir 7 -daY )) .

3. q) o) (g o U' llc) 100 The correlatic significantlY I SimilarlY. onlY recommend frequencies comPutatior Present the low flows r Figure3. ho ease.Plotofactualvscomputeddischarge:1-dayl0-yearylow-flow Low'Flow 7-daY10-Year I I -t.dayl0.. f ' '--\ I periodT T presente multiPle numbers (3.2) fot resPecti Figure3.4.3.yearlowflow r i al+ .Plotactualvscornputeddischarge:1. tht hypsometric a areasbelow 5 by the Poor c the regional a aprlied for th the reiationst and ungauge for these regi lo I() 10 (m3/s) Discharge Actual Anall multiPle reg elevation an improvemen 5000 m.5 Resul Low-Flow 10-Year 1-daY u) (.

of independent variable for duration d and return period T A.2)for the two sample casesof l-day lO-year and 7-day Z-year low flows Annexure I presentsan exampleof the computation.1 and Figure 3.3 and Figure 3. The improvement in goodnessof fit by including additional parametersin area below 5000m. be taken while applyng applied for an ungaugedlocation above 1800 m in high mountain areas therelationship andungauged locations on streamsoriginating in the Siwalik or Terai as no data forthese regionswere availablefor developingregressionequations. The table also includes the statistics obtained from the analysis of the data.Correlation matrices also indicate that the basin areas below 5000 m are the most influencing area for the low-flows. respectively. Figure 3.r : Coef.r: Constantcoefficient for a duration d and return period T Fa.4 comparesthe multipleregression obtainedfrom actual values with the numbers computed from Equation numbers (3. theregional aspectis consideredless significant so that the same equation may be for the whole country. where. however was marginal.. Considering the applicability of equation with only the relationship of low-flow with area below 5000 m have been ease. The following equation (Equation 3.5r: Area of the basinbelow 5000 m The values of C and F for different return periods and duration are presented in Table 3.5 Resulfs and Dfscussion The correlation matrix (Annexure III) shows that the low-flow values are significantlycorrelated with basin area. basin perimeter. the minimum flows are also significantly related to different hypsometric and land-useareas.rJ A-* .2. Figure 3. 35 .3. As indicated by the poor correlation between the low-flow and the geographical coordinates.2 computation present the best-fit plot presentingthe sample of 7-day Z-year and 7-day Z}-year low flowsrespectively. Similarly. W = Co. Caution should.2) may be used for the of low flows at an ungaugedlocation.2) Co..Qd. Anaiysis of multiple regressionshowed that the relationship based on the regression of areabelow 5000 m or 3000 m combined with averagebasin multiple elevation and averagebasin slope yielded best results avoiding co-linearities. however. d: duration(day) T: Return period (year) (3.: Discharge 1m3/s. * Fo. and river length. for the estimation of low-flows for different durations and recommended frequencies.

0032 1 0.94C 0.0031 [/onthlv 0.003c 3C 0.0742 0.086c 0.t.1807 0. Return std.003c 30 0.160€ 0.0698 0.302€ 0.0777 1 0.2144 0.0033 2 7 0.2362 0.91€ 0.Table 3.0854 [/onthly 0.083c 0.oogr 0.927 0.2138 0.915 0.929 36 .003c 0. Far Car Day Error Period 1 0.076€ 0.081t 0.0729 0.2.0662 0.0748 t. Const.93C 0.0031 30 0.921 0.0920 0.94C 0.0703 0.0031 Monthly 0. .0031 0.929 0.194t 0.0726 0.0033 0.938 0.339i 0.085s 10 0.925 0. Table Laote Ior for low-fl tow-Ilow esLtmatton estimati equauons Goef.0754 f 0.912 0.0031 20 0.

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attempts to derive pattern of the hydrological characteristicsover Nepal were not successful regional primarilybecauseof the unavailability of representativeinformation covering the wholeregion.Estimatedvaluesshouldbe judged properly on thebasis of hydrological reasoningfor the best results. Middle Mountains. suggested in this report. Since the developed methodologies are based on limited information and averaged conditions.The following precautionsare particulariy importantwhile applyrngthe methods. aremore static comparedto floods in the mcuntainousrivers. . i Aithough Nepal can be divided into three distinct physiographic zones. Flow-duration curve for an hngauged location usesthe samevariable as in averageannualhydrographbesidesthe b.physiographic. the updated database integrated in a GIS system was the source of land-use. 45 .Similarly.which is not yet properlyassessed. average annuaiprecipitation and basin areabeiow 3000 m. precaution should be taken in applying the methods in river basinssmallerthan 20 km2.the hydrology of the high Himalayan region needsto addressthe complex processof snow and glacier. Average annual hydrograph at an ungauged location is computed using.Besides. and hypsometric data used in this study. . Since the drainage areas used in this study ranged from 17 kmz to 54000 km2. low flowsare estimatedon the basis of the drainageareabelow 5000 m.asin area below 5000 m. The mathematical formulations developedfor different hydrological designs arebasedon easily derived basin and climatic information. average basin elevation. the nature of floods in Terai is The Terai fioods different fronnr/alley floods in the mountainousareas. Reliability of the methodswill be low in the high Himalayan region where no regular hydrometry exists. The methodswill need specialjudgment in the Terai region where the flows are highly influencedby surfacewater-Groundwaterinteractions and human impacts.Drainage area of the ungaugedbasin below3000m is the only parameter requiredfor flood flow estimation. and the Terai.are the updates of the eariiersimilar studies(WECSIDHM. 1990). Besides.5 CONCLUSIONSANIDRECOMMENDATIONS Themethodsfor hydrologicalestimations at ungauged locationsin Nepal. In addition. . Designers with iimited hydrological expertise can use these methods.they should be used only for the hydrological investigationsat reconnaissance or pre-feasiblylevels. nameiy the High Himalayas. The existing hydrometric network in Nepal covers only the Middle Mountain regionwithin the eievation zonefrom 140m to 1800m abovesealevel.The updates use meteoroiogicaland hydroiogical data up 1995.

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Station number: Location: River: 600.5L.0 55.9 53.60 08/08/e4 r_99s 1450 . .M INSTAI{TAI\TEOUS Discharge caugE height DaEe (m) {m3/s) 69.5 52.0 5L.ITA}IEOUS Discharge Gauge heighE Date ( m 3 / s) (m) l-985 t420 5.60 05/oe/8s 1_986 L270 6.30 2e/05/8e r.67 1. 10 t3/08/eo r_991_ ) .990 LL70 6.4 59. 60 L8/02/86 te/02/87 27/OL/88 20/02/8e 0 7/ 0 2 / e o r .4 53.s8 1.50 ts / o8/88 L9B9 1270 6.70 76/06/eL 1992 L270 5.3 L.993 t470 6.8s 1.48 1.70 04/07/e3 L994 957 5.50 28/08/es Year MINIMI.80 1.s0 1. B .48 26/or/et 27/02/92 23/03/e3 22/OL/gq 03/Or/e5 66 .s 3 1_.30 2 s / o B /e 2 r.1 Uwa Gaon Arun River Latitude: Longitude: 27 36 00 87 20 06 EXTREME DISCHARGES MAXIMI'M INSTAI.30 2e/06/86 L987 L 5 20 6.6.4 70 6.3 67 .87 L. 80 t 2 / 0 8 /8 7 j-370 L988 6.0 61.

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