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Research Applications Water Resources Engineering (WRE)

The WRE program responds to a range of local to global water resources questions, with answers that can greatly improve the stewardship of our planet. Graduate students in the WRE program will be mentored to take leadership roles in such research. This process includes regular reading of journals, meeting with steering committee members, development of research proposals, and completion of experiments with follow on analysis. Tools used include advanced field equipment, instrumented field sites, high-end hydrology, hydraulics, and water quality laboratories, powerful computing facilities and use of GIS and remote sensing technologies. The list of current projects and recent publications below provides a more detailed insight on our research activities.

Projects may involve: watershed hydrology, hydrologic / hydraulic monitoring and modeling, water resources systems engineering, stochastic / deterministic modeling, pollutant fate and transport, and solid waste treatment and industrial residual flow capture.

Current projects

  • Investigating linkages between vegetation (forest trees; UFORE and iTRee) and hydrology in the urban environment (Syracuse, NYC, Baltimore) and developing components of a watershed restoration plan to mitigate urban heat island problems. Using GIS and remote sensing based computational design models to propogate pollutant plumes, represent land cover boundary conditions, and simulate feedback mechanisms between weather forcing and vegetative response. Funding from USDA Forest Service.
  • Determining how river restoration with in-channel structures (j-hooks, cross vanes) modifies lateral migration of sinuous rivers and the dynamics of point bar development with cut-bank erosion. Using coordinated field surveys (total station, GPS), sediment flume and river table experiments, and computational fluid dynamics (Fluent) modeling. Funding from US EPA.
  • Characterizing how cold climate stormwater, enriched with road salts (300 to 900 mg/l) affects bioretention (rain garden) processes and the abatement of pollutant loading to receiving waters. Research has taken soil cores with and without bacterial populations and used inflow/outflow water quality samples along with DNA analysis to understand design constraints. A bioretention basin has been built on campus. Funding from USDA McIntire Stennis.
  • Using ecological engineering design to maintain stream hyporheic exchange flow during a dewatering regime for community water supply in Buena Vista Honduras. Local Ecological Knowledge (LEK) is used to assess changes beyond the science scope. Funding from NSF CBET (Engineering).
  • Examining how stream restoration and natural pool-riffle or step-pool sequences enhance hyporheic exchange processes and mitigate stream thermal loading from impervious surface runoff. The research used extensive field data collection and computer simulation addressed how restoration designs can incorporate adjustments to enhance hyporheic exchange and maintain scour protection. Funding from Syracuse Center of Excellence.
  • Investigating linkages between watershed restoration design (TNC grazing lands) and hyporheic exchange flow (with detailed nutrient transformation studies) in the semi-arid climate of western Wyoming, with a hydrologic component of surface water simulation of rainfall-runoff and geomorphic controls on pressure-gradients. Funding from NSF EAR Hydrology.

Recent publications (* denotes graduate student)

  • Crispell*, J. and T.A. Endreny, "Stream Restoration and In-Channel Structure Controls on Hyporheic Exchange Flow", Hydrological Processes, In Press 2008.
  • Endreny, T.A., and K.E. Thomas*, "Improving Estimates of Simulated Runoff Quality and Quantity using Road-Enhanced Land Cover Data", Journal of Hydrologic Engineering - ASCE, In Press 2008.
  • Endreny, T.A., and V. Collins*, ""Implications of Sub-Optimal Stormwater Recharge Basin Arrangement on Groundwater Mounding", Ecological Engineering, In Press 2008
  • Thomas*, K.E. and T.A. Endreny, "Improving National Land Cover Database Estimates of Road Network Impervious Cover Using Vector Road Networks in GIS", Surveying and Land Information Science, 68 (1): 21-27.
  • Endreny, T.A. and M. Higgins*, “Adding Radar Rainfall and Calibration to the TR-20 Watershed Model to Improve Dam Removal Flood Analysis”, ASCE Journal of Water Resources Management and Planning, 34(3): 314-317.
  • Endreny, T.A., "Estimating Recharge Rates for Qanat Based Water Supply In Northern Cyprus: A Case Study Using Remotely Sensed and In-Situ Data", Urban Water Journal, 5(2):161-171, 2008.
  • Wang*, J., T.A. Endreny, and D.J. Nowak, "Mechanistic Simulation of Tree Effects in an Urban Water Balance Model". Journal of American Water Resources Association, 44(1): 75-85, 2008.
  • Endreny, T.A., "Naturalizing Urban Watershed Hydrology to Mitigate Urban Heat-Island Effects", Invited Commentary in Hydrological Processes: 22: 461-463, DOI: 10.1002/yp.6966, 2007.