Space-based Measurement, Mapping, and Modeling of Surface
For Research, Humanitarian, and Water Management Applications
Community Surface Dynamics Modeling System
INSTAAR, University of Colorado, Campus Box 450, Boulder, CO 80309 USA
Flood Observatory Mission Statement
The Dartmouth Flood Observatory was founded in 1993 at Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH USA and moved to the University of Colorado, INSTAAR in 2010. Its sustained, not-for-profit operation depends on grant and project support. Financial contributions may be tax-deductible.
Vitae: Flood Observatory Director Albert Kettner and Founder and Associate Director Robert Brakenridge
Movie of Flood Locations, 1985-2016
Flood Observatory Web Map Server
GeoSUR Web Map Server (turn on "LAC Floods" and "River Flow" layers)
Science Article about DFO by Jason Plautz
GFP 2018: The next Global Flood Partnership meeting will be on 25 - 27 June 2018 in Delft, The Netherlands, hosted by Deltares Institute. Details posted here: 2018. There is no registration fee.
New Mapping in Progress: West Virginia and Virginia, USA, June 3, 2018. Red is flooding imaged by Copernicus Sentinel 1 SAR data provided by the European Space Agency; June 3 image is compared to a matching May 10, 2018 image. This is a portion of the Shenandoah River southwest of Front Royal, Virginia; flooding is predicted to increase during next several days.
New Mapping in Progress: May 19, 2018, #4619: Sri Lanka
New Mapping in Progress: May 11, 2018, #4610: Record flooding, Missoula, Montana, USA
New Mapping in Progress: May 3, 2018: Flooding in Somalia has displaced 175,000 people.
(Red: Reported major floods during past 20 days. White squares: Current Conditions displays)
Whole Earth image from JHT's Planetary Pixel Emporium
Since late 1999, satellite data have been obtained by the Flood Observatory, processed to detect water/land boundaries, and analyzed to produce flood inundation limits in vector GIS format. DFO's Current Conditions updates this information each day into displays showing current surface water compared to the record of flooding. In 2017, we are revising the displays for global coverage. New format sample: 090E030N.
River and Reservoir Watch
DFO's River and Reservoir Watch provides experimental, fully automated satellite-based river discharge and reservoir area measurements. They are updated daily. Ground-based gauging stations can accurately observe flow changes along rivers and streams (blue line in example below, Site #91, Wabash River, central USA). Using specially processed microwave information (in black), satellite data can provide similar data at very much lower cost and across international boundaries. DFO is developing an array of validated measurement sites for the Earth (click on link above or map below).
Twice-daily updates at 2:30 and 14:30 Local Denver Time
Flood-generating (red) and Drought-affected (yellow) Watersheds
Daily updates at 14:30 Local Denver Time. Data are from River Watch.
Vegetation Index-Indicated Drought
Daily updates at DFO at 6:00 local Denver time; source image is updated weekly