The PREMHYCE project – Low-flow forecasting by hydrological models, comparison and evaluation – aims at comparing and evaluating low-flow forecasting hydrological models for water resources management (from a few days to a few weeks ahead). Five hydrological models were tested on a set of French catchments, considered as unimpaired (24 catchments) or influenced by human activities (11 catchments), essentially by river withdrawals or dams.

The PREMHYCE project was launched in 2010 by AFB (French National Agency for Biodiveristy; formerly ONEMA: French National Agency for Water and Aquatic Environments) and Department of Fresh Water and Biodiversity of the French Ministry for Environment. It is led by the Irstea Antony HYDRO team and has several scientific partners: BRGM (French Geological Survey), EDF (French national electricity company), Météo-France, and the Lorraine University.

Following the scientific work completed in 2014, the project partners decided to develop an operational tool for low-flow forecasting, designed for operational services for real-time implementation.

For more information:

Nicolle, P., C. Perrin, V. Andréassian, B. Augeard, F. Besson, A. Carroget, D. François, M. Le Lay, F. Regimbeau, and D. Thiéry (2015): Prévoir les étiages : que peut-on attendre des modèles hydrologiques ? (Low-flow forecasting : what can be expected from hydrological models?; In French), Série « Comprendre pour agir », 24 pp., Onema.

Nicolle, P., Perrin, C., Andréassian, V., Besson, F., François, D., Le Lay, M., Mathevet, T., Regimbeau, F., Soubeyroux, J.-M., Thiéry, D., Viel, C., Augeard, B., Maugis, P., and Morice, E. (2014): Prévision des Etiages par des Modèles Hydrologiques : Comparaison et Evaluation (Projet PREMHYCE) – Rapport de synthèse (Low-flow forecasting by hydrological modelling : comparison and evaluation (PREMHYCE project – Final report; In French). Rapport final ONEMA, 44 pp,

Nicolle, P., Pushpalatha, R., Perrin, C., François, D., Thiéry, D., Mathevet, T., Le Lay, M., Besson, F., Soubeyroux, J.-M., Viel, C., Regimbeau, F., Andréassian, V., Maugis, P., Augeard, B., and Morice, E. (2014): Benchmarking hydrological models for low-flow simulation and forecasting on French catchments, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 18, 2829-2857,


Pierre Nicolle, Irstea (

Claire Magand, AFB (

Aurélie Carroget, MEEM (