HWM-33806 Water and Air Flow Numerical Techniques


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Course coordinator(s)MSc PhD LA Melsen
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. CC van Heerwaarden
ing. G Bier
MSc PhD LA Melsen
Examiner(s)MSc PhD LA Melsen
dr. ir. CC van Heerwaarden
ing. G Bier

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

MAQ-22806 Atmosphere-Vegetation-Soil Interactions.

Continuation courses:

SLM-33306 Advanced Hydrological Systems Analysis; MAQ-31806 Atmospheric Modeling.


This course introduces the numerical techniques that are essential in the numerical modeling of stationary and dynamical flow problems in hydrology and meteorology. First, students will study the special class of differential equations that describe flow problems and learn the concepts behind the modeling of the equations. Emphasis will be on the key concepts of states, storage, and vector fields. Students will learn how to define appropriate boundary conditions. Second, students will learn the numerical techniques available to solve flow equations, such as finite differences, finite volumes, and finite elements, and will construct their own simplified flow models based on these techniques. Third, students will learn how to conduct sensitivity analysis and how to use this technique to gain insights in model behaviour. 

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- explain the concepts and basics of numerical simulation models consisting of differential equations. These concepts include formulations for state variables, rate variables and driving variables. Important subjects are feedback mechanisms, time coefficients, analysis of units, and techniques to solve matrix equations;
- describe and apply numerical techniques to solve spatial flow problems;
- develop, test and analyze numerical models for simplified systems;
- critically analyze and appraise results from numerical models using sensitivity analysis;


- classroom lectures;
- computer assignments using R;
- discussion of assignments.


Marks are based on a written examination (80%) and a final assignment (20%).


Lecture slides and practical assignments, with references to relevant literature, shared through Brightspace.

Compulsory for: MEEEarth and EnvironmentMScA: Hydrology and Water Resources3WD
Restricted Optional for: MEEEarth and EnvironmentMScB: Meteorology and Air Quality3WD
MCLClimate StudiesMScA: The Physical Climate System3WD