The Engineering of Mathematical Models

by Bernard E. Ross, Univ of South Florida, Tampa, United States,
Mark A. Ross, Univ of South Florida, Tampa, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Resources Planning and Management and Urban Water Resources


This paper presents the history of the development of a mathematical estuary hydraulic and an ecology based water quality model, and the problems encountered in transferring use to the State of Florida, Department of Environmental Regulation. The models are currently in use by the agency. Brief descriptions of the models are included in the paper for reference. In the transfer process it became evident that important fundamental engineering concepts have been ignored in the application of many mathematical models. Currently popular models of water bodies can be shown to lack basic similarity between model and prototype in spite of calibration and verification as currently practiced. These models are being asked to accomplish goals totally unattainable because of unappreciated model limitations. The availability of fast micro-computers and the promise of desk-top super-computers within the year revive the necessity for good engineering practice in the evaluation of available models and in the development of future models.

Subject Headings: Mathematics | Mathematical models | Hydraulic models | Hydrologic models | Water quality | Engineering profession | Water pollution | Environmental issues

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