Successful start for Hydrological Open Source Community

The HYPE Open Source Community is now open to anyone interested in hydrology, for cooperative code development. The community was successfully launched recently.

The international community for developing hydrological computational models is gaining momentum, and several teams from around the world have also chosen to use SMHI’s hydrological calculation model HYPE. So far around 400 users from up to 20 different countries have downloaded the code.

“We are learning all the time. Thanks to an international hydrological network we are able to help each other to develop computational models, which are our main tools”, says Patrik Wallman, hydrological researcher at SMHI.

Some examples of common areas of development are the models’ ability to calculate melting snow and permafrost, as well as the way the models handle different geological situations and vegetation.

Strengthen international collaboration

International networking at a HYPE Open Source Community workshop. Sanyuan Jiang, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research and Eva Mockler, University College Dublin.

The HYPE community is an open source initiative to strengthen international collaboration in hydrological modelling and hydrological data production. The community is open to everyone interested in hydrology, hydrological modelling and code development – e.g. scientists, authorities, and consultants.

Sanyuan Jiang, from the German Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, works with several hydrological models. “We use HYPE in our drainage area and so far we are very pleased with it”, says Sanyuan.

The HYPE Open Source Community kicked off during the autumn with an international seminar in Stockholm with talks by hydrological researchers sharing experience from similar initiatives in the USA and Europe.

“We needed help to get off a good start so that we could avoid the worst pitfalls for this type of community. Thanks to good advice from the participants we now have a better idea of how we should work over the next few years”, says Berit Arheimer, head hydrological research at SMHI.

Around 50 people from 10 countries took part in the seminar. It was followed by two days of training in HYPE modelling and an introduction to the code at SMHI in Norrköping.

“We are very interested in participating in the community”, said Eva Mockler from University College Dublin, during the HYPE course.

Contribute to model improvement

The main objective of the HYPE open source community is to provide public access to a state-of-the-art operational hydrological model while encouraging hydrological expertise from different parts of the world to contribute to model improvement.

The HYPE community can offer the source code of SMHI’s hydrological model HYPE, as a starting point. This will become a platform for international cooperation, networking, knowledge exchange and collective source code development.

It is hoped that the new platform for the community can be operated via the internet, and the site includes a model description, source code, a manual, test areas, references and a user forum.