Water Resources Engineering

Exponent’s Water Resources team specializes in the application of proven hydrologic, hydraulic, hydrodynamic, and sediment transport research and science to provide scientifically sound and cost-effective solutions to our clients. Complex problems of an interdisciplinary nature are addressed through close interaction with Exponent’s other practices.

Our staff brings a high level of expertise with an array of modeling tools and analysis techniques. Exponent routinely uses accepted and appropriate one-, two-, and three-dimensional models for simulating flow and transport, supplemented with focused field and laboratory investigations, geographic information systems, pre and post-processing tools, and visualization and animation routines. Our expertise includes water quality analysis, water resources planning, regulatory and compliance support, litigation support, and strategic planning. We determine the appropriate approach for modeling and analysis, and often custom-tailor software packages to meet our clients’ specific needs.

Our services include:

Hydrology and Hydraulics


  • Hydrologic frequency analysis 
  • Rainfall-runoff analysis 
  • Hydrologic routing 
  • Reservoir systems 
  • Open channel and closed conduit flow 
  • Best management practices 
  • Watershed modeling 
  • Hydraulic structures 
  • Retention/Detention basin analysis 
  • Groundwater hydraulics 
  • Surface water exchange 
  • Seepage analysis 
  • Contaminant transport 
  • Groundwater withdrawal impacts 
  • Subsidence 
  • Physical modeling
  • Storm water sampling design and planning
  • Climate change impacts on water supply and water quality

Hazard Analysis and Mitigation 


  • Flood hazards and mitigation 
  • Floodplain management 
  • Debris flow 
  • Landslides 
  • Effects of fire-flood-erosion sequence 
  • Geomorphology and historical floods 
  • Risk analysis

Hydrodynamics and Sediment Transport 


  • Riverine, lacustrine and estuarine studies 
  • Desalination discharge analysis 
  • Thermal discharge analysis 
  • Intake/outfall sitings 
  • Cohesive and noncohesive sediment transport  
  • Effects of dam removal 
  • Dredging and disposal studies 
  • Contaminant transport 
  • Wave analysis 
  • Coastal studies 
  • Scour protection 
  • Stream bank stabilization
  • Tracer study design and implementation

Restoration of Natural Systems 


  • Riparian wetlands 
  • Coastal marshes 
  • Stream geomorphology 
  • Arid region hydrology 
  • Beach replenishment

Environmental Assessment


  • Contaminant impact analysis
  • Basin-wide water resource evaluation
  • Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA)
  • Water quality simulation

Permitting Issues 


  • Water quality analyses
  • Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) allocation and permitting
  • National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting
  • Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)
  • Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA)
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood insurance studies and policy
  • Clean Water Act (CWA) compliance and citizens’ suits
  • Strategic planning for regulatory and compliance issues

Instrumentation and Monitoring 


  • Climate/meteorology 
  • Monitoring surface water flows, currents, water-borne constituents 
  • Monitoring soil moisture 
  • Groundwater monitoring

Litigation Support


  • Third party citizens’ suits
  • Flooding and property damage
  • Evaluation of impacts to endangered species
  • Spill evaluations
  • Pollutant fate and transport

Professionals