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.

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
Turbulence is the most important unsolved problem of classical physics.
Richard Feynman
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
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
Whenever I gaze up at the moon, I feel like I’m on a time machine. I am back to that precious pinpoint of time, standing on the foreboding yet beautiful – Sea of Tranquility. I could see our shining blue planet Earth poised in the darkness of space.
Buzz Aldrin, in an article for National Geographic News (May 12, 2013)
Cryin’ won’t help you, prayin’ won’t do you no good, Now, cryin’ won’t help you, praying won’t do you no good, When the levee breaks, mama, you got to move
Led Zeppelin. "When the Levee Breaks". Led Zeppelin IV. 1971
For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.
Khalil Gibran, The Prophet
We can see cities during the day and at night, and we can watch rivers dump sediment into the ocean, and see hurricanes form.
Sally Ride in an interview with Scholastic, 1998
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
Water is the best of all things.