Flood Modeling in a Coastal Town in Northern Colombia: Comparing MODCEL vs. IBER
In Riohacha the La Niña, phenomenon generates intense rains with consequent serious flooding. To address this reality, MODCEL, a conceptual cell-based model, had been applied and calibrated in a previous project. In this research, we compare MODCEL with IBER, a well-known, physically based 2D hydraulic model. The purpose is twofold: (i) to illustrate how system schematization can be carried out in the two modeling frameworks, which is not a trivial task and implies several choices and
... s; (ii) to point out the strengths and weaknesses of these two models in a comparative fashion. Here, IBER has been calibrated and validated with the same data used for MODCEL. MODCEL performs slightly better, both in calibration and validation possibly because of the low resolution of the topographic information, an essential element for IBER. Furthermore, in IBER it is not possible to represent adequately all the different hydraulic works spread across the town. MODCEL, in turn, is not easy to apply because it requires a deep insight into the actual behavior of the physical system and time-consuming schematization attempts where a deep experience is needed; furthermore, it is by far less user-friendly than IBER. In any case, the two models capture sufficiently well the behavior of urban flooding and its changes according to hypothetical interventions.