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Water Res. 2001 Dec;35(18):4261-6.

Performance of stochastic approaches for forecasting river water quality.

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  • 1Department of Civil Engineering. Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, India.


This study analysed water quality data collected from the river Ganges in India from 1981 to 1990 for forecasting using stochastic models. Initially the box and whisker plots and Kendall's tau test were used to identify the trends during the study period. For detecting the possible intervention in the data the time series plots and cusum charts were used. The three approaches of stochastic modelling which account for the effect of seasonality in different ways. i.e. multiplicative autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) model. deseasonalised model and Thomas-Fiering model were used to model the observed pattern in water quality. The multiplicative ARIMA model having both nonseasonal and seasonal components were, in general, identified as appropriate models. In the deseasonalised modelling approach, the lower order ARIMA models were found appropriate for the stochastic component. The set of Thomas-Fiering models were formed for each month for all water quality parameters. These models were then used to forecast the future values. The error estimates of forecasts from the three approaches were compared to identify the most suitable approach for the reliable forecast. The deseasonalised modelling approach was recommended for forecasting of water quality parameters of a river.

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