Developing cloud-based tools to predict monthly streamflow in western montana
Mountain snowpack is an essential water resource for people, economies, and ecosystems in Montana, the western United States, and across the Earth. Despite its importance, measurements of mountain snowpacks are sparse, and often rely on hydro-meteorological monitoring sites that are location-specific and are often not representative of rugged mountain landscapes. This project will provide stakeholders in Montana with a prototype streamflow forecast model (SnowCloudHydro) that implements satellite measurements of snowpack, precipitation, and soil moisture. Satellite data are not connected to a fixed location and provide insights in data scarce regions. SnowCloudHydro is an entirely web-based platform for data analysis and geovisualization. The methods combine cloud-based data access, interactive web-based geospatial data visualization, and forecast tools through a web browser. This innovative approach will deliver time-critical snow hydrology information to resource managers, decision-makers, and researchers.
Dr. Eric Sproles is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at Montana State University.