Integrated Terrestrial-Coastal Modeling System: DHSVM-FVCOM-RIFT
The frequency and intensity of flooding events have been increasing and are expected to continue increasing in the mid-Atlantic region and other parts of the U.S. due to sea-level rise and increases in the frequency of intense precipitation and storm surge events. Improving our understanding and ability to simulate these extreme events and how they might be changing is of paramount importance. To address these challenges, under the Integrated Coastal Modeling (ICoM) project, we are developing an integrated terrestrial-coastal modeling system (DHSVM-FVCOM-RIFT) that has sufficiently fine spatiotemporal scale to capture fluxes between systems important for flooding and other crucial biophysical and biogeochemical processes relevant to the land-river-estuary-ocean continuum. Our initial focus in the development of the integrated system is to provide a more comprehensive characterization of flooding to include the compounding effect of coastal, fluvial, and pluvial flood types. We will implement a two-way coupling between FVCOM and DHSVM to assess the interplay of riverine and coastal processes, including freshwater and saltwater interactions, heat, sediment, and nutrient fluxes from watersheds to coastal systems. To capture the compounding effect of not only river (fluvial) and coastal flooding in urban environments, output from DHSVM (river flow frequencies) and FVCOM (water elevation frequency) will be imposed on RIFT, a two-dimensional urban-area hydrodynamic model, to simulate high-resolution flood dynamics within urban environments such that human-system impacts and risk can be quantified. We will present an overview of the coupled modeling framework, model developments and initial model application to coastal watersheds in the mid-Atlantic region.