On 24 September 2019, Mr Juan Carlos Chacon Hurtado successfully presented and defended his PhD thesis and was awarded with a Doctoral degree. Professor Dimitri Solomatine was his promotor and Dr. Leonardo Alfonso his co-promotor.
The PhD research focused on
Precipitation drives the dynamics of flows and storages in water systems, making its monitoring essential for water management. Conventionally, precipitation is monitored using in-situ and remote sensors. In-situ sensors are arranged in networks, which are usually sparse, providing continuous observations for long periods at fixed points in space, and due to the high costs of such networks, they are often sub-optimal. To increase the efficiency of the monitoring networks, we explore the use of sensors that can relocate as rainfall events develop (dynamic sensors), as well as increasing the number of sensors involving volunteers (citizens). This research focusses on the development of an approach for merging heterogeneous observations in non-stationary precipitation fields, exploring the interactions between different definitions of optimality for the design of sensor networks, as well as development of algorithms for the optimal scheduling of dynamic sensors. This study was carried out in three different case studies, including Bacchiglione River (Italy), Don River (U.K.) and Brue Catchment (U.K.) The results of this study indicate that optimal use of dynamic sensors may be useful for monitoring precipitation to support water management and flow forecasting.