IBM has developed new technology for weather prevention and emergency response preparation.

In conjunction with researchers from the University of Texas at Austin, the project simulates the behavior of millions of river miles at once. To predict river patterns the software couples analytics software with advanced weather simulation models.  

IBM’s new flood technology could help provide up to several days warning of a flood. It simulates tens of thousands of river branches at a time in comparison to traditional flood prediction methods, which only focus on the main stems of the largest rivers.  

Currently, the team is testing the model to predict miles of rivers and tributaries in Texas. The new method’s speed and scale is a significant advantage. It can generate up to 100 hours of river behavior in just a single hour.

The flood prediction could also be used in a similar system for irrigation management. Multiple “what if” scenarios can be evaluated and used to create better plans for both droughts and water surplus.   

The advancement of the river simulations, is in part to IBM’s weather modeling software,“Deep Thunder.” The software provides high-resolution, micro-forecasts with calculations as fine as every mile.  

These initiatives are part of IBM’s Advanced Water Management, to better use information technology to solve water management problems around the world.