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Do you know a drought analysis software?

Drought is one of the most severe and extreme weather events affecting more people than any other form of natural disaster (e.g. Wilhite, 2000). As we know for monitoring drought event and drought analysis we should use the related drought indices by drought analysis software. In the scientific literature four types of droughts are commonly distinguished: meteorological or climatological, hydrological, agricultural, and socioeconomic (e.g. Rasmussen et al., 1993, Wilhite and Glantz, 1985).

For drought monitoring, various drought indices have been developed to describe the intensity of a drought, including SPI (Standardized Precipitation Index), PNI (Percent of Normal Index) (Willeke et al., 1994), DI (Deciles Index), EDI (Effective Drought Index) (Byun and Wilhite, 1999), CZI (China-Z index), MCZI (modified CZI), RAI (Rainfall Anomaly Index) and ZSI (Z-Score Index). Drought indices are calculated by a combination of climatic and meteorological variables, among which precipitation is the most important in defining the magnitude and intensity of a drought (Alley, 1984; Chang and Kleopa, 1991; Salehnia et al., 2017).

So, if you want to calculate different drought indices you need to apply a proper and simple tool as a drought analysis software. If you search in the net you can find out that there are different R packages and Matlab codes to compute some of drought indices, most of them are not easy to apply and run as a drought analysis software. However, we want to introduce four different user-friendly software tools that you can prepare them from, in this website you can see all the mentioned tools as a drought analysis software.

  1. The first and comprehensive one is: DMAP (Drought Monitor And Prediction) software: With this software tool you can compute more than 18 drought indices in different types of drought. Also, you can use different format of the input data, such as csv, xls, xlsx, and also nc (NetCDF). By using DMAP (Drought Monitor And Prediction) tool you can observe the results of meteorological drought indices SPI (Standardized Precipitation Index), DI (deciles index), PN (Percent of Normal Index), CZI (China-Z index), MCZI, RAI (Rainfall Anomaly Index), EDI (Effective Drought Index), KBDI, PDSI, RDI, PHDI, SPEI, and ZSI (Z-Score Index)), agricultural drought indices (ARI, SMDI, and ETDI), and hydrological drought indices (SWSI and SDI). In the monitor phase in DMAP (Drought Monitor And Prediction) software, through selecting every index, the user can calculating it and then by available graphs (line, columnar, and Boxplot), the user can monitor the happened drought event in various time scale in the study area. In the prediction phase, the user by importing the downscaled outputs of GCMs models in DMAP (Drought Monitor And Prediction) tool, he/she can calculate every index the he wants for future period.
  2. The second applicable software tool is: MDM (Meteorological Drought Monitor) software application for calculating eight rain-based meteorological drought indices, namely: SPI (Standardized Precipitation Index), DI (deciles index), PN (Percent of Normal Index), RAI (Rainfall Anomaly Index), EDI (effective drought index), CZI (China-Z index), MCZI (modified CZI), and ZSI (Z-Score Index) in form of yearly, seasonally, monthly and moving average for 3, 6, 9, 12, 18, 24, and 48 months.
  3. The third wonderful drought tool is: RDIT (Rain-based Drought Indices Tool) software. The RDIT tool can calculate and perform rain-based drought indices. This software can calculate eight indices of meteorological drought. You can draw graphs and estimate the severity, onset, and end of each period's drought. Input and output data are in excel format file. For input data, RDIT (Rain-based Drought Indices Tool) is a smart. It can assess your data and check blank cells and produce data for "null" cells. This software calculates SPI (Standardized Precipitation Index), DI (deciles index), PN (Percent of Normal Index), RAI (Rainfall Anomaly Index), EDI (effective drought index), CZI(China-Z index), MCZI (modified CZI), ZSI (Z-Score Index) in form of yearly, seasonally, monthly and moving average for 3, 6, 9, 12, 18, 24, 48 months. You can save graphs to image files.
  4. The fourth useful drought is: KBDIS (Keetch-Byram Drought Index) Software for calculating Keetch-Byram Index as a drought index. This tool software apply daily precipitation (mm) and daily maximum temperature (Celsius), KBDI has the potential to describe moisture deficiency in upper soil layer (Keetch and Byram 1968). KBDI (Keetch-Byram Drought Index) that use minimum number of meteorological parameters (precipitation, maximum temperature), was originally developed for the southeastern forest of the United States and has been extensively used for fire potential assessment in the U.S. (Keetch and Byram 1968). By running this tool, you can import your station data as excel file and calculate KBDI in yearly, seasonally, monthly, and daily Formats. This software can draw linear, Columnar, and box-plot graphs. The user can easily determine the field capacity option in this tool.
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