Flood early warning system now in safe hands

New start for the European Meteorological Data Collection Centre

As well as generating early flood warnings the Meteorological Data Collection Centre analyzes the general weather situation and shows the relationships between anomalies in the weather and occurrences of flooding. (Source: KISTERS AG, DWD)

Aachen, November 2015. With climate change the frequency of floods that can put people and infrastructures at risk is increasing. In order to be better prepared for them, the European Flood Awareness System – EFAS – has been fully operational under the Copernicus emergency management service since 2012. The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is now starting a project for the further development and operation of the EFAS Meteorological Data Collection Centre. KISTERS, the solutions provider for water management, together with the Global Precipitation Climatology Centre (GPCC) of the German Weather Service (DWD), have won the contract for the Copernicus project. The new system will gather measurement data from all participating countries on precipitation, air temperature, wind speed and direction, and will then validate, manage and store it in a central database.  This consistent European pool of data will enable scientific evaluation using standardized methods. The linkage of measurement data together with weather and runoff forecasts will, moreover, support reliable flood forecasting up to ten days in advance. Appropriate early warnings will be automatically sent to both the national and regional flood control centers of the EFAS member states as well as the European Emergency Response Coordination Centre (ERCC). The technical basis for the data centre is the water management information system WISKI, which reports, evaluates and disseminates the meteorological situation several times per day.  The system is designed to be able to integrate and process rapidly growing volumes of data of the future. High-performance validation methods and the real-time processing of high resolution time series round off WISKI’s range of service.

The European Flood Awareness System has been operating under the patronage of the Copernicus Emergency Management Service since October 2012. This institution’s objective is to prepare member states optimally for climate-related catastrophes.



KISTERS AG is a fast growing mid-size IT firm with 500 employees, its head office is in Aachen, Germany with subsidiaries in North America, Australia, New Zealand, China and several European countries. KISTERS offers leading software solutions for the sustainable management of water, energy and air. Professional expertise, commitment and branch experience make KISTERS a sought-after solutions partner. In the German-speaking regions, KISTERS software is the market leader in water management and energy data management. WISKI, the KISTERS water information system is software for network monitoring management focusing on the compilation and analysis of hydrologic data. WISKI is used by hundreds of clients with several thousand licenses worldwide in the monitoring of surface and groundwater, meteorology, flood warnings, reservoir operations and security, water quality und urban drainage sectors.


About Copernicus

Copernicus (previously the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security – GMES) is an EU program for the establishment of European information services based on observations of the Earth from satellites and local (not spatial) data. It has been set up by the European Commission (EC) with the support of the European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Environment Agency (EEA). Its objective is the observation and forecasting of the state of the environment on land, water and in the atmosphere, in order to support climate protection, adaptation strategies and the efficient management of emergency situations, as well as increasing the safety of all citizens. Copernicus is a user-oriented program, which makes its information services freely and openly available to users, most of which are public authorities.


About GPCC

For more than 25 years (since 1989) the German Weather Service has operated the Global Precipitation Climatology Center (GPCC) in order to publish regular globally scanned analyses of land surface precipitation on behalf of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) based on its precipitation database, which is the most comprehensive in the world. As the subcontractor for KISTERS, WZN is making available its technical expertise and experience gained over many years in the areas of data quality assurance and working with data vendors.



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