Natural hazards and protective structures

What is it? A 2-week intensive course on Natural Hazards and Protective Structures

Who can take part? Students or lecturers who would like to learn about the French expertise on risks protection in mountain areas.

Where? Le Bourget-du-Lac campus. Several field excursions around Chambéry and in the Alps will be organised.

When? The programme will start on June 12th and end on the 23rd.

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Trends in flash flood events versus convective precipitation in the Mediterranean region: The case of Catalonia

Maria Carmen Llasat, Raul Marcos, Marco Turco, Joan Gilabert, Montserrat Llasat-Botija


The aim of this paper is to analyse the potential relationship between flash flood events and convective precipitation in Catalonia, as well as any related trends. The paper starts with an overview of flash floods and their trends in the Mediterranean region, along with their associated factors, followed by the definition of, identification of, and trends in convective precipitation. After this introduction the paper focuses on the north-eastern Iberian Peninsula, for which there is a long-term precipitation series (since 1928) of 1-min precipitation from the Fabra Observatory, as well as a shorter (1996–2011) but more extensive precipitation series (43 rain gauges) of 5-min precipitation. Both series have been used to characterise the degree of convective contribution to rainfall, introducing the β parameter as the ratio between convective precipitation versus total precipitation in any period. Information about flood events was obtained from the INUNGAMA database (a flood database created by the GAMA team), with the aim of finding any potential links to convective precipitation. These flood data were gathered using information on damage where flood is treated as a multifactorial risk, and where any trend or anomaly might have been caused by one or more factors affecting hazard, vulnerability or exposure. Trend analysis has shown an increase in flash flood events. The fact that no trends were detected in terms of extreme values of precipitation on a daily scale, nor on the associated ETCCDI (Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices) extreme index, could point to an increase in vulnerability, an increase in exposure, or changes in land use. However, the summer increase in convective precipitation was concentrated in less torrential events, which could partially explain this positive trend in flash flood events. The β parameter has been also used to characterise the type of flood event according to the features of the precipitation. The highest values correspond to short and local events, usually with daily β values above 0.5, while the minimum threshold of daily β for catastrophic flash floods is 0.31


  • Flash floods;
  • Convective precipitation;
  • β parameter;
  • Trend analysis;
  • Mediterranean

You can download here:

Regional differential behaviour of maximum temperatures in the Iberian Peninsula regarding the Summer NAO in the second half of the twentieth century

V. Favà, J.J. CurtoM.C. Llasat


The relationship between atmospheric circulation in northern Europe in summer and the maximum temperatures (Tx) of the Iberian Peninsula (IP) have received little attention. In this article we explore which synoptic structures related to high absolute values of SNAO (Summer North Atlantic Oscillation) are linked to significant anomalies in the maximum temperatures of the IP on a regional scale. Furthermore, we examine how the frequency of these structures has contributed to the differential evolution of maximum temperature trends in the IP and modulated the relationship between the SNAO and the maximum temperatures of the IP in the second half of the twentieth century.

Four basic synoptic structures were identified and their time series were calculated. Thus, we can explain why significant positive correlations between the SNAO and the maximum temperatures for the north of the IP are found for the 1951–1967 period, while in the 1962–1978 period these correlations are negative and affect the eastern part of the IP.

We found that, for the 1951–1967 period, the negative SNAO contributed to a lowering of the maximum temperatures in the NW and north IP and to a strengthening of the north-south IP maximum temperature gradient. During the 1970s and the start of the 1980s, owing to the much higher values of SNAO, the more negative anomalies in the coldest days shifted towards the east of the IP.


  • Summer NAO;
  • Maximum temperatures;
  • Regional trends;
  • Temperature gradient;
  • Pressure gradient;
  • Iberian Peninsula

You can download here:

Ofertas de trabajo

Oferta 1

Meteored necesita una persona para coordinar y gestionar a un grupo de 
 redactores de noticias del tiempo y clima repartidos por América del 
 Sur, Mexico, Francia, Alemania,etc.
 Se requiere conocimientos básicos de meteo y clima, apasionado de 
 ellas, conocimientos de RRSS, inglés, capacidad organizativa, trabajo en 
 grupo., etc.
 Interesados ponerse en contaco con M.Carmen Llasat (

Oferta 2
 Beca de Investigación en el proyecto: Riscos hidro-geomorfológicos em 
 Portugal: forçadores e aplicações ao ordenamento do território (FORLAND 
 - PTDC/ATP-GEO/1660/2014).
 Plazo de envío de la solicitud: 15 de Agosto a 30 de Septiembre de 
 Duración total de la Beca: 18 meses con inicio previsto para Noviembre 
 de 2016. El contrato inicial es de 6 meses, prorrogable hasta un total 
 de 18 meses.

 Condiciones: El trabajo se desarrollará en el Instituto Dom Luiz (IDL) 
 de la Universidad de Lisboa bajo la tutela del Dr. Ricardo M. Trigo.

 Criterios de Evaluación:
 1) El candidato ha de estar en posesión de título de Máster en Física 
 de la Tierra o área equivalente. Es esencial tener buenos conocimientos 
 de programación en Fortran, Matlab o IDL y buen conocimiento de inglés. 
 Se valorará la experiencia en el tratamiento de bases de datos, 
 incluidas salidas de reanalysis (NCEP/NCAR, ERA-Interim, 20CR).
 2) La beca tiene como objetivo la evaluación espacial y temporal de los 
 eventos hidro- geomorfológicas más importantes que afectó Portugal desde 
 1850. Para eso se va evaluar de los mecanismos sinópticos asociados a 
 estos eventos. Diferentes métodos de detección y el seguimiento de las 
 diferentes estructuras sinóptica (ciclones extra tropicales, "Cut off 
 Lows" o ríos atmosféricos) que se producen en el Océano Atlántico y que 
 afecta a Portugal de modo a permitir la catalogación e identificar los 
 mecanismos atmosféricos asociados a los eventos hidro-geomorfológicas 
 presentes en la base de datos del proyecto.
 3) La dotación mensual es de 980 € (neto). La beca incluye un seguro de 
 trabajo y régimen de seguridad social. Más información en:
 4) Para cualquier consulta contactar con
 Proceso de formalización de la solicitud: La solicitud tiene que ser 
 formalizada mediante envío por correo electrónico a la dirección de la siguiente documentación: 1) carta de solicitud y 
 carta de motivación (formato libre), 2) Currículum Vitae firmado, 3) pdf 
 con los documentos que acrediten los títulos universitarios y las 
 clasificaciones de las asignaturas, 4) pdf del DNI o pasaporte.

PhD position at ENIT (Tarbes) and IMFT (Toulouse): Impact model for the evaluation of the flooding risk.

Context and objectives:

The term “flash flood” refers to sudden floods having high peak discharges in a short response time. They result from a combination of meteorological and hydrological factors. Intense storm events delivering high amounts of rain water appear to be the first condition for flash flooding to be initiated. Watershed characteristics such as small catchments (under 500 km2 ) or steep slopes are associated with short and rapid flood timing. Flash floods are one of the most destructive hazards in the Mediterranean region and have caused casualties and billions of euros of damages in France over the last two decades. The recent case of June 2013 occurred in the Pyrenees killed 2 people and resulted in thousands of victims. The damages were estimated at about 134 million euros. The contrasted topography, the complexity of the continental surfaces in terms of geology and land use, the difficulty to characterize the initial moisture state of the catchments make these extreme events very difficult to assess and predict. The proposed PhD will aim at improving the understanding of the hydrological response by contemporary use of empirical and analytical (or rainfall-runoff) modelling. The ambition is to develop an operational methodology for the anticipation of the risk of inundation. The work will include an inter-comparison of models dedicated to flash flood prediction and allowing the characterization of the resulting risk. The proposed work will therefore contribute to the building of a relevant methodology of risk evaluation for a better protection of the population. The long-standing collaboration between the IMFT and the SCHAPI2 will facilitate the transfer of knowledge to the appropriate operational services. Leer más de esta entrada


General information

The 9th HyMeX workshop will take place from 21 to 25 September 2015, in Mykonos Island, Greece. It will be organized by the National Observatory of Athens at Saint-John hotel.


The general objectives of all the HyMeX workshops are to strengthen the links and knowledge exchange, as well as to foster collaborations within the HyMeX community. The 9th HyMeX workshop will occur at mid-term of the programme. It will be the opportunity to assess the achievements of the programme, both in terms of data collected and scientific studies, against the original objectives of the Science Plan. Running over 5 days, the programme will consist of plenary sessions with review solicited talks and Science Teams oral and poster sessions with an open call for contributions to present and discuss recent scientific progresses in the understanding of the Mediterranean water cycle, from multiscale and multidisciplinary approaches. Leer más de esta entrada

Summer School – Runoff Predictions in Ungauged Basins (PUB) – 6/10 July 2015

This Summer School is devoted to runoff prediction in ungauged basins (PUB), i.e., predicting water runoff at locations where no runoff data are available. This lack of data presents considerable challenges to catchment managers who require information on water flows for decision making. This course, based on the recently published book, “Runoff Prediction in Ungauged Basins: Synthesis across Processes, Places and Scales”, will provide hydrologists with the theory and methods to address this critical challenge. The collection of speakers will bring together results from individual location-based studies and show how a comparative approach can be applied to learn from the differences and similarities between catchments around the world along gradients of climate and landscape features.

LEAFLET: Summer_School_PUB_2015