Tuesday, March 21, 2023

2023 Stockholm Water Prize went to Andrea Rinaldo

As any year, the first day of Spring and the day before the Water Day, it is announced the Stockholm Water Prize. The Stockholm Water Prize is often described as the Nobel Prize of water and is characterized by a similar selection process. Since 1991, the Stockholm Water Prize has been awarded to people and organizations for extraordinary water-related achievements. Its official site is SIWI. Last year the Prize was given to Wilfried Brutsaert

This year prize was assigned to Andrea Rinaldo, first Italian to receive it, as a recognition of his achievements and its role for the Italian and International Community of Hydrologist. Professor in Padova and at Ecole Politechnique in Lausanne, he was one of the founder and head of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department of the University of Trento of the degrees in Environmental Engineering.  The the official announcement has been shared on SIWI’s Youtube channel on Tuesday 21 March, at 3pm CET.  SIWI website (https://siwi.org/stockholm-water-prize/) contains further information. 

Andrea Rinaldo (center) in Mesiano - Trento - Department of Civil, Environment and Mechanical Engineering Department 

Andrea Rinaldo  is one of the most eminent Italian Hydrologists ever. The Italian community of hydrologist bloomed in the last twenty years and is now one of the most active and productive in the World. This was certainly due to the positive action that Andrea Rinaldo started since the late eighties of last century to promote young researchers and put them in contact with some of the most outstanding scientists in the field, starting from Ignacio Rodriguez-Iturbe,  Gedeon Dagan and Peter Eagleson (all of them have received the Stockholm Water Prize),  Raphael Bras and others. He was him between the very few who captured the attention of these greats with his creativity and dedication and involved them in researchers with Italians gifting many youngster of an incomparable education in hydrology. 

He steered the Italian Water Community to put attention on the important topics of water management, hydrology and geomorphology.  Some of the younger Italian scientists could not be aware of that but when some good research is published from Italians, there is a good chance that at least some drops of it have a seed in Rinaldo's academic and scientific work. 

Andrea Rinaldo   himself is an extraordinary researcher. He gave fundamental contributions in understanding the shape of river networks and his book with Ignacio Rodriguez-Iturbe is a long-standing milestone on the subject. The theory of optimal channel networks not only gives explanation of how the river networks evolve and behave but also has risen the interest for hydrology of scientists  working on related disciplines, and, in particular, of those working on transportation networks making hydrology an epitome of many other physical phenomena. 

He contemporarily worked on the theory of the Instantaneous Unit Hydrograph, where his contributions are among the the most cited. More recently he renewed the topic with a couple of papers that completely changed the view on travel times and residence times and related issues. Those contributions are definitive in clarifying the subject and they close with a neat theory ninety years of research history. At the same time those contributions are the seeds of the current studies with tracers and isotopes that are going to push greatly forward our knowledge on water movements in hillslopes and vegetation.

Together with  Rodriguez-Iturbe and younger fellows, he was architect of many eco-hydrological studies since the year 2000 that brought new insights in the soil-vegetation-atmosphere interactions and inspired new directions of research.

While continuing to frequent his vast collections of research topics that he manages masterfully, and where there are many “minor’’ contributions that could just be the reward of a carrier for others, he worked intensively in the last twenty years to understand the mechanics of  the spreading of the water borne diseases and, in general, of the spreading of populations. In this he actually joined together several of his research favorite topics, river networks, water, transportation issues, complexity, theoretical, field and laboratory work. His recent book with Marino Gatto and Ignacio Rodriguez-Iturbe is a compendium of  provoking ideas and methods that certainly will last long in the libraries (virtual or not) of the researchers of the field.

Monday, March 20, 2023

The Hydrology Class - The lab



The lab is almost half of the class. According to the motto "learning by doing" it covers at least three numerical experiments:

  • The estimation of the Intensity-Duration-Frequency curves
  • A few experiments with infiltration
  • A few experiments with evaporation and transpiration 
Please find below
Videos and material are  indicated singularly below.

2023-03-20 Introduction to working with Jupyter and Notebooks
    • Counting the events and producing their empirical statistics (Vimeo2022)
2023 - 03 - 27/28
Interpolating the Gumbel distribution to annual precipitation maxima
  • Introduction to the Object Modelling System and its Console (Vimeo2023)
  • Creation of the WHETGEO - 1D Grid (Vimeo2023)
  • Introduction to WHETGEO - 1D (Vimeo2023)
2023-05-29/ 2023-06-30
  • How to run WHETGEO-1D  (Vimeo 2023)
  • How to visualize the outputs of WHETGEO (Vimeo2023)
  • How to format and Create time series (Vimeo2023)
  • Estimating radiation in GEOframe (Vimeo2023)
  • The estimation of the transpiration stress factors (Vimeo2023)
  • The estimation of the evapotranspiration with the Priestley-Taylor formula (Vimeo2023)
  • The estimation of the evapotranspiration with the Penman-FAO formula (Vimeo2023)

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

When radiation hits canopies

 When radiation hits canopies its energy is partitioned among the leaves. Dealing with this complexity was faced since the studies by Monsi and Saeki, 1953 and summarised in Goudriaan, 1977 and Hirose, 2004. In the note at the link, there is a brief description of the Sun-Shade model by de Pury and Farquard, 1997 which assume that leaves are divided into 2 compartments, the leaves under sunlit and the leaves in shades. The Authors claim that this simplified model does not imply great errors in estimation of canopy radiation with respect to more complicate and computationally expensive models. 


Sunday, March 5, 2023

The DICAM-EXC Hydrological day

 As a conclusion of what done for the DICAM  excellence project we organized half a day of seminars. As keynote speaker we invited Andrea Rinaldo (GS), one of our mentors, who gave a keynote talk entitled "Reflected In Water". 

The contribution by Andrea was followed by the talk given by Giuseppe Formetta (GS) who was hired upon financial support of the project and presented his research activities. His talk was: Modeling multiple natural hazards with the GEOframe system in the Trentino Alto-Adige region (Video). 

Finally we had contributions from the three doctoral students also hired on the project, 

  • Concetta D'Amato, Steps toward a comprehensive treatment of the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum: the GEOSPACE model.
  • Maria Grazia Zanoni, Machine Learning for predicting and mapping hydrological and environmental variables.
  • Nerea Karmele Portilo de Alberoa. Microplastics in Riverine Systems: A Network-Based Model for Transport and Fate
Here please find the talk of Concetta D'Amato