Modelling daily water temperature from air temperature for the Missouri River

  • Zhu S
  • Nyarko E
  • Hadzima-Nyarko M
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The bio-chemical and physical characteristics of a river are directly affected by water temperature, which thereby affects the overall health of aquatic ecosystems. It is a complex problem to accurately estimate water temperature. Modelling of river water temperature is usually based on a suitable mathematical model and field measurements of various atmospheric factors. In this article, the air–water temperature relationship of the Missouri River is investigated by developing three different machine learning models (Artificial Neural Network (ANN), Gaussian Process Regression (GPR), and Bootstrap Aggregated Decision Trees (BA-DT)). Standard models (linear regression, non-linear regression, and stochastic models) are also developed and compared to machine learning models. Analyzing the three standard models, the stochastic model clearly outperforms the standard linear model and nonlinear model. All the three machine learning models have comparable results and outperform the stochastic model, with GPR having slightly better results for stations No. 2 and 3, while BA-DT has slightly better results for station No. 1. The machine learning models are very effective tools which can be used for the prediction of daily river temperature.




Zhu, S., Nyarko, E. K., & Hadzima-Nyarko, M. (2018). Modelling daily water temperature from air temperature for the Missouri River. PeerJ, 6, e4894.

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