• artificial neural network;
  • Devils Lake;
  • Red River;
  • flood forecasting;
  • lake stage prediction;
  • temporal scale

Abstract: An artificial neural network (ANN) provides a mathematically flexible structure to identify complex nonlinear relationship between inputs and outputs. A multilayer perceptron ANN technique with an error back propagation algorithm was applied to a multitime-scale prediction of the stage of a hydro-logically closed lake, Devils Lake (DL), and discharge of the Red River of the North at Grand Forks station (RR-GF) in North Dakota. The modeling exercise used 1 year (2002), 5 years (1998–2002), and 27 years (1975–2002) of data for the daily, weekly, and monthly predictions, respectively. The hydrometeorological data (precipitations P(t), P(t-1), P(t-2), P(t-3), antecedent runoff/lake stage R(t-1) and air temperature T(t) were partitioned for training and for testing to predict the current hydro-graph at the selected DL and RR-GF stations. Performance of ANN was evaluated using three combinations of daily datasets (Input I = P(t)), P(t-l), P(t-2), P(t-3), T(t) and R(t-l); Input II = Input-l less P(t) P(t-l), P(t-2), P(t-3); and Input III = Input-II less T(t)). Comparison of the model output using Input I data with the observed values showed average testing prediction efficiency (E) of 86 percent for DL basin and 46 percent for RR-GF basin, and higher efficiency for the daily than monthly simulations.