Welcome to the website of the Fluvial, Oceanic, and Water-level Sciences (FLOWS) research group of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Portland State University. The unifying theme of our work is the influence of hydrodynamic processes on ecosystems. Though we specialize in physical oceanography, we study topics ranging from juvenile salmon to climate change, and wavelet transforms to beach ripples.

Turbulence is the most important unsolved problem of classical physics.
Richard Feynman
The use of sea and air is common to all; neither can a title to the ocean belong to any people or private persons, forasmuch as neither nature nor public use and custom permit any possession therof.
Queen Elizabeth the I of England, Letters
I am an old man now, and when I die and go to heaven there are two matters on which I hope for enlightenment. One is quantum electrodynamics, and the other is the turbulent motion of fluids. And about the former I am rather optimistic.
Horace Lamb in Turbulence: an Introduction, 1932
I’ve known rivers: I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins. My soul has grown deep like the rivers.
Langston Hughes
The day, water, sun, moon, night – I do not have to purchase these things with money.
… Ocian in view! O! the joy! …
Captain William Clark upon seeing the Columbia River estuary, Nov. 7, 1805
Because there’s nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, no matter how many times it’s sent away.
Sarah Kay
For many of us, water simply flows from a faucet, and we think little about it beyond this point of contact. We have lost a sense of respect for the wild river, for the complex workings of a wetland, for the intricate web of life that water supports.
Sandra Postel
Remember that all models are wrong; the practical question is how wrong do they have to be to not be useful.
George E.P. Box, Empirical Model-Building and Response Surfaces, 1987, pp. 74
When life looks sandy and barren, is reduced to its lowest terms, we have no appetite, and it has no flavour, then let me visit such a swamp as this, deep and impenetrable, where the earth quakes for a rod around you at every step, with its open water where the swallows skim and twitter…
Henry David Thoreau