Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2020IA095B

Hydro-NPOSS: A Non-Proprietary Open-Source Software for Hydrologic Data Visualization and Model Evaluation

Institute: Iowa
Year Established: 2020 Start Date: 2020-02-28 End Date: 2021-02-26
Total Federal Funds: $5,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $10,000

Principal Investigators: Navid Jadidoleslam

Abstract: Emerging techniques and data sources such as satellite remote sensing platforms and field observation networks have brought an unprecedented opportunity for the hydrologic community to better understand hydrologic cycle. At the same time, it has introduced challenges requiring effective tools and techniques for dissemination, visualization and analysis of the hydrologic data. Several open-source software solutions have been developed for hydrologic data visualization and analysis. Unlike their commercial counterparts, open-source software for web applications can benefit from developer contributions, user feedbacks, and further improvement. However, in most cases, the current solutions for hydrologic data have multiple dependencies on third-party software and programming languages which makes them cumbersome and time-consuming to deploy, maintain, and extend. To overcome these hurdles, we developed a non-proprietary open-source software (NPOSS) that allows users to visualize and analyze multivariate space-time hydrologic data that we call Hydro-NPOSS. Hydro-NPOSS leverages the concept of three-dimensional data cubes that allow users to query data in space, time, and variable dimension(s) which does not require a database system. Thereby, users can define data sources from local file systems and/or external data sources (e.g. online data services). This capability makes Hydro-NPOSS a flexible and portable solution where users can publish their hydrologic datasets in Open Data journals or as companion to their publications. Moreover, Hydro-NPOSS is an easy-to-deploy and interactive web solution for data visualizations where it can be used for visualizing time-series and geospatial data with least effort and user expertise in web application development. We implement several use cases including but not limited to hydrologic model visualization and evaluation in hindcast and forecast modes, real-time data browser for streamflow and water quality observations, and satellite soil moisture product visualization and evaluation. The proposed examples are only few web applications of Hydro-NPOSS which are more relevant to the state of Iowa. These web applications can address monitoring and evaluation of water quality and water quantity in the state of Iowa for historical and real-time data which includes flood and drought monitoring using hydrologic model results and satellite-based drought monitoring. The target audience for the proposed cyberinfrastructure are emergency managers, graduate students or academicians and decision makers that have data but limited experience in web application development.