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.

… Ocian in view! O! the joy! …
Captain William Clark upon seeing the Columbia River estuary, Nov. 7, 1805
On your arrival on that coast, endeavor to learn if there be any port within your reach frequented by the sea-vessels of any nation, and to send two of your trusty people back by sea, in such way as shall appear practicable, with a copy of your notes.
President Thomas Jefferson
The progress of the world depends almost entirely upon education.
George Eastman
Turbulence is the most important unsolved problem of classical physics.
Richard Feynman
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
You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.
Rabindranath Tagore
The day, water, sun, moon, night – I do not have to purchase these things with money.
Plautus
Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.
Wernher von Braun in an interview in the New York Times, 16 December 1957
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
The winds, the sea, and the moving tides are what they are. If there is wonder and beauty and majesty in them, science will discover these qualities… If there is poetry in my book about the sea, it is not because I deliberately put it there, but because no one could write truthfully about the sea and leave out the poetry.
Rachel Carson at an acceptance speech of the National Book Award for Nonfiction, 1952