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.

Big whorls have little whorls, which feed on their velocity, And little whorls have lesser whorls, and so on to viscosity.
Dr. Lewis Richardson in Weather Prediction by Numerical Processes, pg. 66, 1922
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
For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.
Khalil Gibran, The Prophet
So, I’m just gon’ sit on the dock of the bay Watchin’ the tide roll away, ooh I’m sittin’ on the dock of the bay Wastin’ time
Otis Redding. (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay. The Dock of the Bay. 1968
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
We owe our lives to the sun… How is it, then, that we feel no gratitude?
Lewis Thomas, Earth Ethics (Summer 1990)
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
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
I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.
Sir Isaac Newton. Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton, 1855 by Sir David Brewster