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IIHR News (January, February, March 2011)

Craig Just, along with four University of Iowa students (Kali Feiereisel, international studies; Thomas Bang, civil and environmental engineering; Sara Rourke, medicine; Nathan Rourke, chemical engineering), traveled to Ghana and spent five weeks in a small village called Kobreti.

The assessment trip was part of a development partnership between the University of Iowa, Engineers Without Borders USA, Self-Help International, and people living in Ghana. The hope is that sustainable development focused on water, sanitation, and energy will occur over time in ways that enable improved community health and prosperity.

Learn more about their trip at
and at

Iowa Flood Center researchers are developing high-resolution flood inundation maps. They use bathymetric surveys, supplemented by aerial LiDAR (laser radar) data of the riverbed, to determine the shape of the channel and the flood plains. With this information, researchers can create detailed maps of river corridors to illustrate where floodwaters will go under different upstream flow conditions. The maps demonstrate every six-inch rise in the flood level, allowing communities and individuals to make informed decisions about their flood risks.

Detailed flood inundation map libraries are available online for Cedar Rapids, Charles City, Des Moines, Hills, Iowa City, and Waterloo. More communities will be mapped in the future.
To use the interactive online maps, visit and click on “Flood Maps” under the Iowa Flood Information System.

Funding Awards and Renewals:

Nandita Basu received $20,000 from The Nature Conservancy for “Modeling surface-subsurface hydrology and nutrient dynamics at the Swamp White Oaks Preserve.”

Wiltold Krajewski received $30,000 from NASA for “Scaling-based flood prediction: exploring benefits of satellite remote sensing.”

Fred Stern received $89,385 from the Department of Defense for “Stochastic Variable Physics SBD for High Speed Waterjet Ships.”

Pablo Carrica was awarded a grant for $58,919 from the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, for his project titled, “Integration of PUF-14 into CFDShip-Iowa V4.5 and Validation for Transient Self-propulsion and Maneuvering Applications.”

Thanos Papanicolaou, professor and faculty research engineer at IIHR—Hydroscience & Engineering, was awarded $59,938 from Mid-America Transportation Center for “Monitoring the effects of knickpoint erosion on bridge pier structural damage and scour.”

Jerald Schnoor was awarded $66,667 from Rice University for “Engineered Nanomaterials and plant interactions: Uptake, biotransformations, and physiological effects.”

Troy Lyons received a $197,190 grant from Ch2M Hill for physical modeling for Abbey Mills Shaft F in London.

James Buchholz and Thanos Papanicolaou have received a $280,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for a study of fluid dynamics and, in particular, how fluids move around riverine structures. For the purposes of the study, sediment is defined as pieces of naturally occurring material broken down by natural processes such as erosion.

With Sorrow:

IIHR alumnus Marco Falcon passed away in Venezuela on March 27 due to heart problems. “He was a good friend, also great hydraulic engineer,” said Emilio Martinez.

Falcon was a student of former IIHR Director Jack Kennedy and an expert in sediment transport.

Dr. Tatsuaki Nakato said, “When Rob [Ettema] and I met him in Venezuela in 2006, he was very active and was asking all kinds of interesting questions to presenters.
He was literally a father in hydraulics over there.” He will be missed.

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Last modified on June 29th, 2015
Posted on May 3rd, 2011

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