Apr 13, 2015

University of Arizona Professor Named 2016 Distinguished Lecturer

The lecture explores how the practice of hydrology depends on computer models and discusses new methods for characterizing and monitoring the subsurface

Ty Ferré University of Arizona Henry Darcy Distinguished Lecturer groundwater

Ty Ferré, Ph.D., professor in the University of Arizona’s Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, has been selected as the 2016 Henry Darcy Distinguished Lecturer by the National Ground Water Research and Educational Foundation.

Ferré’s lecture, “Seeing Things Differently: Rethinking the Relationship Between Data and Models,” explores how the practice of hydrology depends on computer models while at the same time new methods have been adapted or developed for characterizing and monitoring the subsurface.

He notes these two areas have evolved almost completely independently of one another, but posits a unified approach is needed—designing measurement methods in the context of numerical analyses that address specific scientific and management questions. Accordingly, Ferré will present an integrated overview of the relationships among models, measurements and decisions, including:

  • Discussing what is actually being measured when measurements are made, with a focus on the large scale from pumping tests to geophysics;
  • Describing how these measurements currently are being merged with models and how this process could be improved;
  • Covering how hydrogeologists can turn the standard approach to combining measurements and models around by using models to help identify more informative measurements; and
  • Exploring how the optimal design of a measurement and modeling campaign can, and should be, driven by the specific practical or scientific questions being asked.

Named in honor of Henry Darcy of France for his 1856 investigations that established the physical basis upon which groundwater hydrogeology has been studied ever since, this lecture series has reached more than 85,000 groundwater students, faculty members and professionals since its inception in 1986.

The Henry Darcy Distinguished Lecture Series in Groundwater Science is partially underwritten by the firms Woodard & Curran and Leggette, Brasehears, & Graham Inc., each of which is donating $5,000 for the 2016, 2017 and 2018 lectures.