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Wayne Tschirhart, PE, PMP, CFM XP Software webinar - April 24, 2014

Topic Summary
Model Review
Documentation review

SARA began reviewing CLOMR/LOMR
applications as a FEMA delegate for its
four-county jurisdiction in 2012.
Questions about 1D/2D and 2D model
reviews prompted development of
regional modeling and review standards.
SARA aligned the standards with software reference manuals,
FEMAs Appendix C - Guidance for Riverine Flooding Analysis and
Mapping, USACE Engineering Manual 1110-2-1416 on River
Hydraulics, and input from experienced 2D modelers.

Model Review First Steps
Get a copy of the software reference manual
Check the version
Open the model
Missing layer files
Most common is <filename>.xptin
Second most common are GIS/CAD layers
Run the model
Note any runtime errors/warnings
Request resubmittal if it wont run

Model Review - 1D Network
Should be located at significant
changes in stream geometry
Spill crest elevations should be
above the adjoining 2D grid, but not
too far, and linked to 2D
Represented by a conduit with
uniform cross section
Natural cross sections should be
truncated at banks or limits of 1D
flow in overbanks
Model Review - 1D Network
Hydraulic Structures
Does the configuration make
1D Boundary Conditions
Upstream - flow hydrograph
Steady continuous flow
Unsteady discontinuous flow
Downstream - water level
Are they reasonable?
Model Review - 2D Geometry
Grid Extents
Extend beyond project to allow a
solution without edge effects
Boundary elements should not be used
to restrict water from leaving the
Grid Cell Settings
Large enough to meet study objectives
without masking important detail
Cell elevations should represent an
average of points or TIN under the cell
3 to 4 cells across major 2D flow paths
Not used to remove structures or lots
from the floodplain

Model Review - 2D Geometry
Grid Orientation
Should coincide with the general
flow direction through the system
Active Areas
Not necessary if grid default is set to
Used to define 2D domain on an
inactive default grid
Perform sanity checks - Are they
being used selectively to avoid
Model Review - 2D Geometry
Inactive Areas
Not necessary if grid default is set to
Typically used to isolate 1D network
from 2D domain on an active default
Perform sanity checks - Are they being
used to mask problems?
1D/2D Interfaces
Ensure they are snapped to inactive /
active area boundaries
Will cause large Total Model Continuity
Error value if not snapped
Model Review - 2D Geometry
1D/2D Connections
All nodes should be connected
Connections should not stray too
far upstream/downstream
2D Head Boundaries
Set anywhere flow leaves domain
Are they reasonable?
2D Flow Boundaries
Set anywhere water is entering the
Are they reasonable?

Model Review - 2D Geometry
Rainfall/Flow Areas
Community FPA should specifically approve use
Will be considered a change in hydrology if FIS
flows change
Aerial reduction required if outlet drainage area
> 10 mi
Flow Constrictions
Check input
Look for documentation
Land Use
Published guidance not readily available outside
software reference manuals
Some experienced users found that 2D n-values
tend to be higher than those used for 1D models
Make sure the n-values are reasonable

Model Review - Topography
Add definition to terrain
Were they used correctly and do
they make sense?
Fill Areas
Raise terrain to a specified
Dynamic Elevation Shapes
Simulate elevation-dependent

Model Review - Topography
Must be submitted with the
Must cover the entire project and
2D domain
Should contain sufficient detail
for the purposes of the study
Verify it reasonably reflects actual
terrain at the required accuracy
Model Review - Time Series Outputs
XP Software recommends placing flow
Just inside each of the boundaries
Upstream and downstream of key structures,
through structures
Areas of particular interest to the community
Should be aligned perpendicular to flow
flows are graphed and conservation of
mass is checked
Extracts elevation and velocity
information at points of interest
Model Review - Configuration
Check everything under main configuration menu
Global Data
Natural sections
2D Land use
2D soil type
Interface files
If used, ensure they are submitted with the model
2D Job Control
2D model should be active
Time Step
Starting points
Cell size/6 for U.S. customary units
Cell size/2 for metric units
Wet/Dry Depth should be reasonable or specified by
Smagorinsky factor should be between 0.6 and 1.0
Model Review - Configuration
Model Review - Results
1D model results are checked through tools under
Results menu
2D model results are checked through Reporting in the
layers box
Do results make sense?
Water follows channels, is deeper in channels than
overland areas, etc.
Check flow entering and leaving nodes
Must match published FIS flows or the requestor has
changed the hydrology and must provide new hydrology

Model Review - Results
Check for unreasonably high velocities
Look for instability
Instability shows up as rapid variations in flow/elevation
with time
Instability at the ends of the rising and falling limbs may
not be a concern
Instability during the peak should not be present
Check results at time series output lines/points
Check flow over weirs and verify it agrees with expected
Model Review - Results
Check initial conditions
Were they appropriate for the flow regime?
Check volume conservation
2D volume error should be 1%
*.tlf file, bottom
1D continuity error should be 5% Good
*.out file, Table E22
Check floodplains
Are they reasonable?
Check upstream & downstream boundaries
Are water surface elevations within foot of the FIS profile?

Model Review - Diagnostics
Review the <model_name>.tlf file
Very useful for finding data input problems and identifying
Open the file with a text editor and search for any WARNING,
CHECK or NOTE messages
An XY: at the beginning of a line indicates whether the error,
warning, check or other message has also been redirected to a .mif
Opening the .mif file in the main map window often provides
a far more rapid way of locating warning/error messages
within the model domain(s)
Model Review - Diagnostics
Review the <model_name>.out file
A list of hydraulic tables located near top of file provides
excellent reference for sections to check for specific 1D
model performance and warnings/errors
Nodes with a high number of iterations should be
investigated and may indicate a problem
Review the messages.csv file
Documentation Review
Primary reason 2D or 1D/2D model additional data letters
at FEMA review level is incomplete documentation
FEMA Appendix C Good source for documentation requirements
Alternative method justification
The study must show that the original model was
Inappropriate means the model was not designed to simulate
the flow regime or model assumptions were violated
Simply stating the original model was inappropriate is not

Documentation Review
Grid development
Extents, cell size, and orientation
Cell size
Time step selection
Data development
Modifications through elevations shapes
Roughness parameters
Boundary conditions
Soil moisture & losses
Losses should not be added if hydrology already includes them
Documentation Review
Hydraulic structures
Explain hydraulic structure representation and how theyre
tied to the 2D grid
List the grid cells associated with the structure (if using 2D
hydraulic structures)
Discuss the derivation technique/source methodology of
rating tables
Validate head loss calculations against model head losses
Calibrate to recorded observations or high water marks
Use desktop calculations based on theory and/or standard
Compare results with another hydraulic software.
Documentation Review
Model Comparisons
Requirements are the same regardless of whether model is 1D, 1D/2D,
or 2D
Effective vs. Duplicate Effective
Duplicate Effective vs. Corrected Effective
Corrected Effective vs. Existing Conditions
Existing Conditions vs. Proposed Conditions
Compare water surface elevations via tables
Compare top widths via tables
Must be submitted even if software does not produce them
All major flow paths must have a profile
Duplicate effective profile must match effective model within foot
Documentation Review
Require pre-approval from the RPO
Floodway methodology must be documented
An explanation of all errors, warnings, and notifications
should be included
The modeler may have to open the output files and manually
search for warnings or notifications the model produces
Should be documented, even if its calibrated to an effective
Workmap Review
Requirements are the same as 1D with some additions
Top Widths have to match model top widths
Cross section lengths have to match model sections
Profile from map must match profile plots within 0.1 foot
2D domain coverage must be represented
Cell numbering scheme must be noted

Use the appropriate level of modeling for the flow regime
The increased complexity of a 1D/2D or 2D model calls for
a much higher threshold for documentation
One-dimensional model parameters do not always cross
over to multidimensional models
Communities should develop/adopt multidimensional
model standards as a reference framework for consistency
Software reference manuals are an awesome resource for
determining whether model parameters are reasonable
Review is easier if you establish a consistent work flow

SARA Regional Modeling Standards:
Contact Info:
LinkedIn @ Wayne Tschirhart