Flow and Temperature Modeling

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With funding from the North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative, we are working with Austin Polebitski, Casey Brown and Scott Steinshneider from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst to develop scalable models of stream flow and temperature. These models will respond to climate forcing (precipitation and air temperature) to generate stream flow and temperature forecasts that will seamlessly integrate into our fish population dynamics models. The forecasts will also be useful to water use planners and natural resource managers who need to evaluate management alternatives in the context of climate change scenarios.

To facilitate use of the models, we are working with the designers of StreamStats to integrate the stream flow (and maybe temperature) models into StreamStats. We are also working with stream hydrologists Christine Hatch and Dave Boutt from the department Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts to measure within-stream temperature variation. These are pictures taken in early March at our primary study site, the West Brook, using an infrared camera. Thanks to the USGS Office of Groundwater Information: Branch of Geophysics at Storrs CT for loaning us the FLIR camera. These pictures show cold tributary water entering the warmer West Brook. The picture on the right also shows a DTS (distributed temperature sensor) cable that records temperature every meter along a kilometer stretch.


 Examples of FLIR images from West Brook (one of our primary study sites):

Cold water (purple) from a tributary entering the warmer (orange) mainstem


Stream-side seep, flowing over rocky/sand substrate(yellow), mixing with the colder West Brook



Cold water (purple) from a tributary entering the warmer (orange) West Brook



Click play on the videos below to see...


....a cold water tributary (purple, on leftt) mixing with a warmer stream...


...and a warm seep (yellow, on top) entering a cold stream...






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Page Last Modified: December 2, 2010
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