Showing posts from November, 2020

Predicting floods using models for Covid and other infectious diseases

  What do Covid-19, social networks, traffic congestion and floods have in common? On the face of it, the answer would seem to be - nothing. But interestingly enough, all these systems can be represented in similar fashions - as nodes and networks with spatial and temporal effects.   So, scientists and researchers often try to see if models and ideas developed to solve problems in fields with similar representations can be adapted to problems in other fields.   A really interesting study was published in Nature   a couple of months ago, where researchers explored what happened when they adapted models used in understanding how infectious diseases like Covid spread to predicting floods in cities and urban systems.   How have floods and their impacts typically been modeled and why do people care? To start with, people care about flooding because it directly impacts their lives - when do areas have to be evacuated, how long should the evacuation last, and what are potential health consequ

Oceans, Ships and Data Science

  What comprises the water sector? If you asked ten people working in the sector, you’d probably get ten different opinions! And that’s because there are so many aspects of working with water and water technology.   There’s drinking water - which involves figuring out how much water is available (water resources management), how to treat it, how to deliver it effectively and at an acceptable price to customers. Then there’s wastewater - how do you treat, remove and recycle wastewater, both residential and industrial, to acceptable levels. Next, we come to the interactions between water and other built systems - hydropower and irrigation being the largest. Then, there’s the impact of water-related disasters - floods and tsunamis for example. Finally, we’ve got natural resources management - where we explore, monitor and evaluate the condition of natural water bodies - lakes, rivers, glaciers and the ocean - and how they interact with other systems.   The fun part about working with wate