A one-day, hands-on, technical workshop focused on unlocking hydrologic data in Central Texas for public consumption.
From Supercomputers to Salamanders
Barton Springs is one of the jewels of Austin. As an important water resource that is part of the Edwards Aquifer, it is one of the most well-studied groundwater systems with a wide range of data and scientific information that contribute to decisions for protecting the Barton Springs Salamander and triggering drought conditions to protect drinking water supply for more than 60,000 individuals who depend on groundwater resources. Monitoring wells, creek flow stations, and precipitation allows us to track conditions within the Edwards Aquifer, but the data is not easily accessible.
The District has teamed up with the Texas Advanced Computing Center to host the first Barton Springs Hackathon! With support from the Hill Country Alliance, the Hackathon will be a fun day to learn, teach, and help make data more accessible.
A Hackathon to Save Our Springs
Here’s where you can help – we need everybody from coders to scientists to educators that can unlock the information collected from a large network of monitoring sites and help well owners and central Texas residents understand the groundwater system that feeds Barton Springs. Join a project team and lend your expertise to the challenge!
Who should attend?
Anyone with a technical, scientific or educational background who can help in the following project teams:
- Well water, stream flow, and precipitation data processing, analytics and visualization
- Web portal and query tool for well owners to identify the most relevant monitor well based on aquifer and location
- Education and awareness projects and curriculum
- Innovating our current sensor network to be IoT capable
- Creating GIS compatible data sets
Project Teams & Hack Challenges
Data Consumption, Raw Data Processing Project Team
Compile precipitation, streamflow, and monitor well data into a useful format that facilitates analysis & visualization. Bonus points for automation!
Analytics, Visualization Project Team
Show the water cycle in action above Barton Springs. Rain–> Recharge in the Creeks (recharge zone) –> Spring Flow & Wells’ Water Level Response
Web Portal Project Team
Help well owners identify which Aquifer District monitor well is most applicable and closest to their well.
Equipment/Sensor Project Team
Streamline downloading from sensors, uploading to data management, and processing.
Teaching Resources Team
Create engaging teaching resources, modules, lessons that use data and visualizations developed by other project teams
Available data: BSEACD Aquifer Data page
LCRA Streamflow & Precip
LCRA maintains and serves up streamflow and precipitation data through the LCRA Hydromet. Streamflow and precipitation help indicate how much recharge is happening. The Hydromet is especially useful in reporting rainfall above the recharge zone.
USGS Streamflow & Lovelady Monitor Well
USGS maintains and serves streamflow data for sites above and below the recharge zone on the major contributing streams. When you compare flow upstream of the recharge zone with downstream flow, it can give an indication of how much recharge is happening (Ex. Upstream Barton Creek: 100cfs, Downstream Barton Creek: 75cfs = 25cfs estimated recharge loss).
BSEACD monitor wells
BSEACD staff maintains 47 monitor wells (47) that are downloaded quarterly and processed through Excel. Data comes in as 15-minute to 1-hr interval data. Corrections/shifts match manual measurements with the continuous measurements. Final datasets are daily minimums. Seeing what the time lag is and tracking aquifer response to rainfall/recharge would allow people to see how groundwater responds to rainfall events. Data are only updated manually (not real-time) 3-4 times a year. Currently, these data are not accessible on the web.
Texas Water Development Board Submitted Well Driller’s Reports and Groundwater Data
Texas Water Development Board hosts Submitted Well Driller’s Reports and Groundwater Data (water quality and periodic water level) through the Water Data Interactive webmap. Over 60,000 people rely on the Barton Springs segment of the Edwards as their sole source of drinking water.