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Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC)
Macroscale Hydrologic Model

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Snow Bands Formulation

Snow elevation bands represent the effect of sub-grid topography on snow accumulation and melt through orographic controls on precipitation and temperature. By including snow bands in areas of high topographic relief the user can obtain a more attenuated hydrograph during spring melt by representing the offset in melt timing between high and low elevations.

Inputs for the snow band algorithm are described in the snow/elevation band file and the global parameter file. The snow band algorithm works as follows:

Although the specified number of elevation bands is constant for all pixels in a model run, it is possible to specify bands with zero area fractions, in which case the elevation band will not be run.

One method of preprocessing DEM data to derive area/elevation parameters is described here.


VIC Administrator
Last modified: Tue Aug 11 14:57:28 PDT 2009