SMHI contributes to Irish capacity building in a training course about hydrological modelling

Two years after the training course in Meteorology, Met Éireann – The Irish Meteorological Service – has hired SMHI again to hold a course on the use of HYPE hydrological model for flood forecasting, which makes SMHIs expertise knowledgeable.

The Irish Meteorological Service is in the process of establishing an operational Flood Forecasting Center within the Flood Forecasting Division.  In a previous stage of this ongoing project, the Belgian consultancy company IMDC was hired to carry out an evaluation of different hydrological models aiming at identifying the one that best allows hydrological modelling for flood forecasting in Ireland. Among the models, the SMHI’s hydrological model HYPE was chosen as best suit for this aim. Met Éireann hence commissioned SMHI for a two-week training course about hydrological modelling with HYPE addressed to their team working with flood forecasting.

A two-week digital course for basic and advanced knowledge

The training course on HYPE was carried out 100 percent digitally to meet the restrictions aimed at avoiding the spreading of COVID-19. The first part of the course was hold at the end of May and touched upon introduction with HYPE, basic processes, basic calibration techniques and the use of HYPETools for result evaluation. The second - held at the end of June – covered more advanced topics such as simulation of regulated lakes, running forecasts as well as practical examples of large-scale model setups performed by SMHI, advanced calibration techniques and the SMHI’s operational forecasting routines. Both parts included an open questions and answers, Q&A, session where course participants could easily interact with SMHI experts, raise questions and carry out relevant discussions.

SMHI’s expertise enables top quality results

The course has been much appreciated from the participants who also acknowledged the challenges of putting together a two-week digital course with less than three-week notice for different levels of expertise.

"The Irish delegation included both participants who never worked with hydrological modelling before and experts who self-learned HYPE for flood forecasting purpose. It was indeed challenging to structure the course so that all participants could follow lectures and exercises and feel active during the classes. However, the extraordinary expertise provided by the course lecturers from SMHI enabled a well-balanced pace and informative contents", explains Carolina Cantone, hydrologist at SMHI and project manager for the training course.

Course participants defined the training course “enjoyable”, while course lecturers were “approachable” and commended for their expertise and their ability to provide “extremely interesting and informative” presentations. “There was a great mix of presentations/presenters in various topics, that complimented each other, but with very little overlap/repetition” – mentioned another one while filling the course evaluation survey.