ASA In-House Tools

Inundation Toolbox™

disaster flooding

ASA uses sophisticated in-house inundation analysis and modeling tools as well as vast knowledge and expertise in mapping and analyzing flood potential from storms or sea level rise. ASA has developed the Inundation Toolbox™--a software system that connects storm surge model predictions to GIS mapping and analysis capabilities to generate maps of areas at risk to inundation from the predicted surge.

A key difference between ASA's Inundation Toolbox and other tools available for modeling flood extents based on topographic data is that ASA’s software is designed specifically to merge disparate data sources into a unified high-resolution dataset. Individual data sources often range in quality and resolution from coarse global collections, to high-resolution, highly accurate data such as LIDAR or field surveys, and the Inundation Toolbox can seamlessly merge these different data sources providing a superior and more accurate model.

Predicting and mapping the effects of coastal storms and sea-level rise are important because of the high vulnerability and potentially high costs associated with these effects in developed coastal areas. With increasing property values, development, and population growth in coastal and other flood prone areas, flood induced losses are increasing, and ways to prevent or mitigate floods are vital. By mapping the flood zones of storms with ASA’s inundation analysis tools and flood modeling services, forecasters, emergency management officials, engineers, insurers, and property owners can easily assess the potential impacts associated with flooding events, and learn how to reduce vulnerability.

Responding to the growing need for impact analysis of flood events, ASA has developed and applies comprehensive new technologies that can determine potential impacts to public safety and property. ASA provides functional teams to evaluate potential regional extreme hydrometeorological events and other flooding mechanisms that may impact vulnerable areas. The results of this work will often be used in a risk analysis by design engineers to develop stormwater and flood control structures and other facilities, or to develop operational procedures to protect the property and human safety for the region or project.

Example Inundation Toolbox video output showing ASA's simulated inundation scenario for New York City. This scenario was based on a Category II hurricane storm surge of 4.7 meters combined with a future sea-level rise prediction of 0.68 meters (source: Canadian Climate Center). The SLOSH total for the simulation was 5.38 meters (17.7 feet).

ASA Inundation Toolbox model of NYC floodingThese maps can then be provided to the public on a website or automatically emailed to interested parties, including local planners, emergency workers, and media outlets. The Inundation Toolbox is an important tool used by ASA for making coastal residents and businesses aware of their vulnerability by allowing them to visualize potential flooding of their properties. These maps allow them to pinpoint familiar locations and evaluate their own susceptibility to the event being simulated. The Inundation Toolbox can be used to hindcast or forecast short-term flooding events defined by design storms, historical storms, or impending storms, as well as long term or permanent flooding events such as the effects of sea level rise.

By applying the Inundation Toolbox and by consulting with ASA’s experts for inundation and flooding analysis, planners, insurers, and private property owners are provided with:

  • Flooding results in a variety of formats allowing dynamic visualization of impacts
  • Flood maps and video simulations that can be easily distributed via email, the Web, television, etc. that easily show areas of vulnerability and impact scenarios
  • A system framework that can store local, regional, and national contingency plans and that easily integrate with ESRI’s ArcGIS and Google Earth
  • Visualizations of potential flooding based on any storm surge or sea level rise predictions
  • Resource allocation support

This software is used in-house by ASA and is not available for commercial distribution.

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