Optimizing complex river basin operations for water resources planning and decision support

Rapid growth in population and mounting needs for irrigation have dramatically increased the necessity to expand sources of reliable water supply while attending to environmental and ecological issues. Publicly-owned water systems must often deal with severe restrictions from complex legal agreements, contracts, federal regulations and interstate compacts; these water systems also face pressures from various special interest groups. Computer modeling tools can optimize and coordinate the many facets of river basin systems to allow managers to make rational decisions.

MODSIM is a generalized river basin decision support system (DSS) and network flow model designed to simulate water allocation and operations in river basins. It can also help you facilitate analysis and understand the dynamics of these complex systems. Experts at the RTI Center for Water Resources have applied MODSIM in many settings. MODSIM uses scenario visualization to compare outcomes, and it has proven to be a robust tool to model a variety of water resources systems and complex operations.

MODSIM was developed at Colorado State University (CSU). Through a collaboration agreement with CSU, RTI International is the exclusive provider of MODSIM development and support, including validation of model upgrades and implementation of new functionality.

MODSIM is structured as a DSS with a graphical user interface that allows users to create any river basin system topology. Results of the network optimization are presented in useful graphical plots.

Following are additional details about MODSIM:

  • Designed for the highly complex and constantly evolving river basin management environment
  • Linked with stream-aquifer models for analysis of the conjunctive use of groundwater and surface water resources
  • Can be used with water quality simulation models for assessing the effectiveness of pollution control strategies
  • Works with geographic information systems for managing spatial data base requirements of river basin management

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