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05/08/2019 10:04:29

Rob Honeywill, Senior Developer – Flood Cloud, Jacobs 

In this month’s tip we’ll look at some lesser known functionality from Flood Cloud, including: 

  • Some of the features of Flood Cloud Standalone 

  • Passing event and scenario parameters to TUFLOW 

  • Monitoring simulations 

Flood Cloud “Standalone” 

Our Flood Cloud user interface is fully integrated into the main Flood Modeller software. Amongst other things, this integration allows you to add simulations to run directly from your current Flood Modeller project with a single click, or load simulations from the new catalogue tool. 

However, we also have a complementary version, Flood Cloud “Standalone”. This is a separate program, a lightweight user interface with just the Flood Cloud functionality. This version is included with the main Flood Modeller installation but is also available as a separate download from the Flood Modeller website. While you will probably continue to use the fully integrated version of Flood Cloud day to day, there are some good reasons to use Flood Cloud “Standalone” to take advantage of some of its specific features: 

  1. Test mode - Standalone includes a “test” mode (soon to be also available in the Flood Modeller integrated version), so that you can check your models should run in the cloud by running a copy of them (no original data will be changed) locally for a couple of timesteps  so that model / file validation is done without incurring any Flood Cloud charges.

    Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 1 

  1. HEC-RAS support – Standalone includes support for running HEC-RAS models on Flood Cloud. We support the latest version (5.07 as of 1st August 2019) of HEC-RAS. 

  1. Light install – Although we have an installation for Flood Cloud Standalone, in most cases you can actually just copy and paste the files to run it on another machine. 

  1. Frequent updates – Standalone is updated regularly to support new solver versions and model configurations. 

  1. Monitoring simulations – If you want to monitor Flood Cloud simulation progress from another machine, you can install the software onto a non-modelling machine or your home computer (no licence needed) for instance and you have a lightweight, quick way to check on simulations. 

  2. Familiar interface  The user interface is virtually the same as the main integrated version of Flood Cloud, so there’s no separate learning curve. 

Passing event and scenario parameters to TUFLOW 

A popular TUFLOW model set up is to use the -e and -s switches to manage multiple events and scenarios from a single control file. The -e and -s wildcard is replaced by entries on the command line, e.g.  

"C:\TUFLOW\2018-03-AE\w64\TUFLOW_iSP_w64.exe"  -e1 Q050  -e2 24hr  -s1 2m  -s2 Dev  "C:\Tutorial_Wiki\TUFLOW\runs\M01_~e1~_~e2~_~s1~_s2~_003.tcf" 

How can you do this in Flood Cloud? 

If your model is linked Flood Modeller 1D / TUFLOW model, then nothing has changed, you need to edit the Flood Modeller 1D simulation (.ief file) in the simulation editor and set the wildcard values under “Run Options” in the “Links” tab: 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 2

Flood Cloud will pick these values up and use them for the simulation (and any variable substitution required). 

If your model is a TUFLOW (or TUFLOW/ESTRY) model, you can enter your wildcard values directly into the interface. To do this, right click on the simulation table header and select “Column Chooser”. In the box that appears, there should be an entry, “Arguments”; double click this to add as a column at the end of the table, or alternatively drag it into the position in the grid you would like it. 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 3

Next enter the wildcard values for each simulation directly into this column for each row, as below (note you will need to add the same simulation .tcf file multiple times – once for each scenario / event combination): 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 4

You are now ready to run the simulations with Flood Cloud. 

You don’t have to enter these wildcard values every time you want to run the simulation. You can save the currently loaded simulations to a Flood Modeller simulation batch file (.ipf), by clicking the “Save” button. This will save the list of simulations as well as any wildcards you have specified to the file. Next time you want to run them again, choose the “Add from file” button and pick the file. 

Monitoring simulations 

One of the nice features of Flood Cloud is that once you’ve submitted your simulations you can close Flood Cloud and even shutdown your machine, picking up where you left off later. As soon as you see, the “Waiting for simulations” message: 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 5

It is safe to close down Flood Cloud completely; the simulations will continue to run. 

For example, you could submit a batch of runs from a desktop machine in your office, close Flood Cloud with the simulations running as below and leave for the day. 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 6

That evening you could check in on progress on a laptop or any other machine as long as you have your Flood Cloud login details. If you’re not in the next day, a colleague can check the status of the simulations and download the results onto their machine. 

Tip of the month - Flood Cloud 7

You can find more information about Flood Cloud on the product page. 

To request a demo or a price list, contact Alastair Sheppard. 

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