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USGS Groundwater Watch

USGS maintains a network of active wells to provide basic statistics about groundwater levels.

 [Image: USGS active water level wells location map.]

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Water Software > Groundwater Software > PULSE

PULSE: Model-Estimated Groundwater Recharge and Hydrograph of Groundwater Discharge to a Stream

This web site includes information about the PULSE computer program for analyzing a streamflow record.  The version at this site will read streamflow data in the format that is available from USGS web sites.


The computer model PULSE can be used to construct a hydrograph of groundwater discharge to a stream. The model is applicable to a groundwater flow system that is driven by areally uniform recharge to the water table, and in which groundwater discharges to a gaining stream. One of the two formulations used by the model allows for an instantaneous recharge pulse and subsequent groundwater discharge to the stream. The other formulation, which allows for a gradual hydrologic gain or loss term in addition to the instantaneous pulse, can be used to simulate the effects of gradual recharge to the water table, groundwater evapotranspiration, or downward leakage to a deeper aquifer.

Program users should be aware of recent data issues (12kb PDF).

Background Literature

The documents below provide valuable information to hydrologists using the PULSE program:

Useful Resources

The following resources may also be of use:

Point of Contact

Support is provided for correcting bugs and clarification of how PULSE is intended to work. Only limited assistance can be provided for applying PULSE to specific problems. Comments and questions can be sent to Paul Barlow.

Other USGS Groundwater Software

The USGS develops groundwater RSS, water-quality, surface-water, and other water-resources software for use by the USGS in fulfilling its mission. Most of this software is available online for download at no charge.

Disclaimers and Notices

Please refer to the USGS Water Resources Software User Rights Notice for complete use, copyright, and distribution information. This software has been approved for release by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Although the software has been subjected to rigorous review, the USGS reserves the right to update the software as needed pursuant to further analysis and review. No warranty, expressed or implied, is made by the USGS or the U.S. Government as to the functionality of the software and related material nor shall the fact of release constitute any such warranty. Furthermore, the software is released on condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from its authorized or unauthorized use.

See also, USGS policy on linking to non-Federal web sites.

Note: Some or all of this information is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of the free Adobe Reader from the Adobe web site. [Link exits USGS] Visit [Link exits USGS] for free tools that allow visually impaired users to read PDF files.

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Page Last Modified: Friday, 21-Aug-2015 15:06:13 EDT