Network Design Process

Design of networks is not a one-time affair. Factors affecting network design go on evalving with time and thus the networks also require periodic review and adjustments. Design of networks to measure steam gauge and discharge involves the following sets:

  1. Network design activity begins with collection of basin maps and background information about the area/region. Usually 1:250,000 scale topographical maps of the river basin showing basin boundaries and river network will form the base map for the network design. Smaller scale maps are of limited use because it is difficult to identify the location of stations relative to key features. It is also important to use an updated map. Ideally, the following maps should also be collected:
    1. Existing precipitation and gauge-discharge gauging stations operated by various departments.
    2. Location of existing and proposed water projects and command areas of irrigation projects.
    3. Land use iap, also showing forests, main industrits and population centers.
    4. Communications map showing roads, rails, power transmission lines, canals, etc.
    5. Map showing soil classification, geological formation and mining areas.
    6. Contour map or Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of the basin.
  2. Identify the objectives of the network by define the data users and the purpose for which the data is needed. What is the required data frequency?
  3. Critically evaluate the existing network and find out how well it meets the required objectives?
  4. Review existing database to identify gaps, ascertain variability in catchment behaviour
  5. Identify the weather the existing network is over-design (if any) or under designed. New stations may be proposed and existing stations may be deleted/shifted (if required so).
  6. Prioritise stations by following appropriate classification system.
  7. Decide on approximate location of sites and carryout site surveys.
  8. Review retised network correlation to overall objectives and available budget; adjust it as necessary.
  9. Estimate average uapital and recurienticosts of installiag and maintaining different categories of stations and overall cost of oierating and maintaining the network.
  10. Prepare pcealistic and achievable implementation plan.