US Army Corps of Engineers
Hydrologic Engineering Center

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User Interface

The HEC-FDA program provides a Graphical User Interface (GUI) that is designed to make the program easy and efficient to use.The interface provides the following functions:

  • File Management
  • Data entry, importing, and editing
  • Data selection and assignments
  • Hydrologic and economic analyses
  • Tabulation and graphical displays of results
  • Reporting facilities

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HEC-FDA uses a relational database to store data and output for reports and the database is the central part of HEC-FDA. The xBase format was chosen for the program because it is: 1) an adopted industry standard; 2) compatible with the file structure found in commercial software; and, 3) functional in the multiple platform environments. The database operations require use of internal identifiers to relate the program's data sets. This presents special design considerations to avoid potential database corruption from affects of multiple users.

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Analysis Steps

These steps are used in formulating and evaluating plans with HEC-FDA:

  • Define a study for both with- and without-project conditions, this is a team effort.
  • Enter study configuration data, this is a team effort.
  • Enter hydrology and hydraulics data. Performed by the hydrologic and hydraulics team members, normally concurrent with the economic analyses.
  • Enter economics data and/or compute aggregated stage-damage functions. Performed by the economics team members, normally concurrent with the hydrology and hydraulics analyses.
  • Perform the expected annual damage/equivalent annual damage calculations, normally performed and reviewed by the study team.

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Risk Analysis

Risk analysis explicitly incorporates a description of uncertainty in discharge-frequency, stage-discharge, and stage-damage relationships in the economic and performance analyses of alternative plans. The process uses Monte Carlo simulation, a statistical sampling-analysis method, to compute the expected value of damage and damage reduced, while explicitly accounting for the impact of uncertainty. Risk analysis thus provides an opportunity to make more informed decisions.

In addition to providing more information for the assessment of flood risk management projects, risk analysis also produces an important collateral benefit: it focuses attention on the important issue of uncertainty inherent in hydrologic and economic computations. Because uncertainty in these computations propagates from uncertainty in the underlying data, methods, and assumptions, attention is eventually refocused on these sources. This attention should eventually lead to improvements in data collection and analysis methods, as more accurate (i.e., less uncertain) data sets, methods, and assumptions are developed to reduce the uncertainty contributed from that particular source.

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