Arabian Journal of Geosciences, vol.13, 2020 (SCI-Expanded)
© 2021, Saudi Society for Geosciences.Digital elevation models (DEMs) are important in flood modelling as they present surface information and obstacles giving the direction of water during a flood event. All hydraulic modelling software needs both channel and floodplain elevation data to simulate the water flow from upstream to downstream. Based on the accuracy and representative capacity of the surface, modelling results can be evaluated in terms of hazard and risk analysis. Developments in remote sensing and GIS technology provide many sources to freely obtain DEM data of different resolution and accuracy. However, access to and the processing of high-resolution data associated with large areas is difficult and time-consuming. This study, therefore, focuses on determining the availability of different resolutions and DEM sources in flood modelling by testing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) data. For this, freely available DEMs such as ALOS DEMs (12.5 and 30 m), EU-DEM (25 m), ASTER GDEM (30 m), SRTM (30 and 90 m), MERIT DEM (90 m) and TANDEM-X (90 m) were chosen to investigate part of Biga River (Turkey) which features a natural channel. Then, 1D flood modelling was examined using different DEM resolutions, Manning’s values and flood data of various frequencies (10, 100 and 1000 years). Results were tested using high-resolution DEM data (5 cm) gathered from a UAV. It was concluded that EU-DEM is the most suitable dataset in terms of flood extent, depth and velocity. However, depending on the boundary characteristics of the data, ALOS 12.5 DEM and MERIT DEM (90 m) data are the most suitable in their extent, depth and velocity for high-resolution and low-resolution flood modelling worldwide extent.