Collaboration with Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Centers

Artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) are tools increasingly being applied to hydrologic problems.

Venn. diagramExtensive data sets of hydrologic information (e.g., precipitation, water levels in wells, pumping rates, etc.) have been analyzed by hydrologists using AI/ML methods for the past decade or more and are now finding even greater application in hydrologic predictions. Likewise, it is anticipated that the extensive data generated in the water balance research focus area of the Hydrologic Innovation Center using remote sensing and other geophysical methods will be well suited for analysis using AI/ML methods.

Fortuitously NM Tech already has AI activity on campus working toward establishing a Center for Artificial Intelligence & Data Science (CAIDS). The research staff in the new Hydrology Center would be able to apply the expertise of the CAIDS as one means of tackling complex hydrologic problems.

The current work by hydrogeologists in the NM Bureau of Geology in mapping the aquifers of New Mexico is also highly relevant to the emphasis of the Center. The aquifer mapping project would provide an excellent baseline for comparing assessments of our major aquifers using the remote sensing and geophysical methods applied by the Center’s researchers. Further, the NM Bureau of Geology, with funding from the state legislature, was recently tasked to make water data in the State more transparent and accessible. Many of these water data sets are quite extensive and nicely complement the aquifer mapping project. The big data sets produced statewide by the NMBG could be analyzed by hydrologists affiliated with the Center using AI/ML methods.