Doubly stochastic Poisson pulse model for fine-scale rainfall

Thayakaran, Rasiah orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-4422-4095 and Ramesh, N. I (2016) Doubly stochastic Poisson pulse model for fine-scale rainfall. Stochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment, 31 (3). pp. 705-724. ISSN 1436-3240

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Stochastic rainfall models are widely used in hydrological studies because they provide a framework not only for deriving information about the characteristics of rainfall but also for generating precipitation inputs to simulation models whenever data are not available. A stochastic point process model based on a class of doubly stochastic Poisson processes is proposed to analyse fine-scale point rainfall time series. In this model, rain cells arrive according to a doubly stochastic Poisson process whose arrival rate is determined by a finite-state Markov chain. Each rain cell has a random lifetime. During the lifetime of each rain cell, instantaneous random depths of rainfall bursts (pulses) occur according to a Poisson process. The covariance structure of the point process of pulse occurrences is studied. Moment properties of the time series of accumulated rainfall in discrete time intervals are derived to model 5-minute rainfall data, over a period of 69 years, from Germany. Second-moment as well as third-moment properties of the rainfall are considered. The results show that the proposed model is capable of reproducing rainfall properties well at various sub-hourly resolutions. Incorporation of third-order moment properties in estimation showed a clear improvement in fitting. A good fit to the extremes is found at larger resolutions, both at 12-hour and 24-hour levels, despite underestimation at 5-minute aggregation. The proportion of dry intervals is studied by comparing the proportion of time intervals, from the observed and simulated data, with rainfall depth below small thresholds. A good agreement was found at 5-minute aggregation and for larger aggregation levels a closer fit was obtained when the threshold was increased. A simulation study is presented to assess the performance of the estimation method.

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