Water Resources Management

, Volume 32, Issue 1, pp 83–103 | Cite as

A Comparative Study of Various Hybrid Wavelet Feedforward Neural Network Models for Runoff Forecasting

  • Muhammad ShoaibEmail author
  • Asaad Y. Shamseldin
  • Sher Khan
  • Mudasser Muneer Khan
  • Zahid Mahmood Khan
  • Tahir Sultan
  • Bruce W. Melville


Considering network topologies and structures of the artificial neural network (ANN) used in the field of hydrology, one can categorize them into two different generic types: feedforward and feedback (recurrent) networks. Different types of feedforward and recurrent ANNs are available, but multilayer perceptron type of feedforward ANN is most commonly used in hydrology for the development of wavelet coupled neural network (WNN) models. This study is conducted to compare performance of the various wavelet based feedforward artificial neural network (ANN) models. The feedforward ANN types used in the study include the multilayer perceptron neural network (MLPNN), generalized feedforward neural network (GFFNN), radial basis function neural network (RBFNN), modular neural network (MNN) and neuro-fuzzy neural network (NFNN) models. The rainfall-runoff data of four catchments located in different hydro-climatic regions of the world is used in the study. The discrete wavelet transformation (DWT) is used in the present study to decompose input rainfall data using db8 wavelet function. A total of 220 models are developed in this study to evaluate the performance of various feedforward neural network models. Performance of the developed WNN models is compared with their counterpart simple models developed without applying wavelet transformation (WT). The results of the study are further compared with - multiple linear regression (MLR) model which suggest that the WNN models outperformed their counterpart simple models. The hybrid wavelet models developed using MLPNN, the GFFNN and the MNN models performed best among the six selected data driven models explored in the study. Moreover, performance of the three best models is found to be similar and thus the hybrid wavelet GFFNN and the MNN models can be considered as an alternative to the most commonly used hybrid WNN models developed using MLPNN. The study further reveals that the wavelet coupled models outperformed their counterpart simple models only with the parsimonious input vector.


Rainfall-runoff modelling Wavelet transformation Feedforward Modular Generalized Neural network 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Bahauddin Zakariya UniversityMultanPakistan
  2. 2.The University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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