California Water Science Center (CAWSC) - San Bernardino Valley Optimal Basin Management (OBM)

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San Bernardino Optimal Basin Management

Welcome to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) San Bernardino Optimal Basin Management website. This site provides hydrologic data collected or compiled by the USGS in the San Bernardino area; some additional data may be available from the USGS database National Water Information System (NWIS).

Project Chief: Wes Danskin
Phone: 619-225-6132

Groundwater Flow Model

A groundwater flow model of the valley-fill aquifer provides quantitative information to aid in managing water resources. This information can be used independently or can be combined with the constrained optimization model to address more comprehensive questions of water use.

A groundwater flow model is a mathematical representation of groundwater flow through an aquifer, which is composed of saturated sediment and rock. In order to solve the equations that constitute the flow model, it is necessary to make simplifying assumptions about the aquifer and the physical processes governing groundwater flow. The most important of these assumptions are embodied in the conceptual model of the aquifer. Although the groundwater flow model cannot be as detailed or as complex as the real system, the model is useful in at least four ways: (1) the model integrates and assures consistency among aquifer properties, recharge, discharge, and groundwater levels; (2) the model can be used to estimate flows and aquifer characteristics for which direct measurements are not available; (3) the model can be used to simulate response of the aquifer under hypothetical conditions; and (4) the model can identify sensitive areas where additional hydrologic information could improve understanding.