Mohammed Mizanur Rahman

Research Interest

My research domain spans from field to basin scale hydrological modelling with a wide range of hydrological models (both numerical and conceptual). In particular, investigating wetlands’ hydrologic and hydraulic interactions with surrounding environments (e.g. rivers and aquifers) has been a preferable area to me over the last couple of years. Under my PhD work, I have developed a variant of Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model to enhance SWAT’s capability in simulating riparian wetlands’ hydrology. My research also includes treatment (downscaling and bias correction) of raw Global Climate Model (GCM) generated data and assessing climate change effects on terrestrial water distribution. My current research is simulating groundwater recharge in an Amazonian experimental ranch where I am using the numerical HYDRUS model.


PhD 2017: University College London (UCL), UK; Department of Geography (Wetland Hydrology Unit)

MS 2011: North Dakota State University, USA; Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Dept.

MS 2006: Bangladesh Agricultural University, Bangladesh; Irrigation and Water Management Dept.

BS 2004: Bangladesh Agricultural University, Bangladesh; Faculty of Agricultural Engineering and Technology.

Selected Publications

Rahman, M. M., Thompson, J. R, and Flower, R. J. 2019. Hydrological impacts of climate change on river-wetland systems in the Upper Meghna River Basin (Bangladesh and India) and their implications for rice cultivation. Hydrological Sciences Journal. DOI: 10.1080/02626667.2019.1676427

Rahman, M. M., Thompson, J. R, and Flower, R. J. 2016. An enhanced SWAT wetland module to quantify hydraulic interactions between riparian depressional wetlands, rivers and aquifers. Environmental Modelling and Software, vol: 84, p: 263-289.

Rahman, M. M., Z. Lin, X. Jia, D. D. Steele, and T. M. DeSutter. 2014. Impact of subsurface drainage on streamflows in the Red River of the North basin. Journal of Hydrology, vol: 511, p: 474-483.

Leanne Hancock

Research Interests

My research is focused on the geochemistry of modern and ancient sediments. Specifically, I employ a wide variety of tools including stable isotope and trace element geochemistry to reconstruct ancient environments. My previous work was focused on low-oxygen settings and understanding the role of anoxia on local and global ocean chemistry and ecology. Ongoing projects include reconstructing sulfur cycling in methane seep environments and the depositional history of the organic-rich Monterey Formation and its impact on and role in Miocene climate. Current work at Michigan State includes using nitrate nitrogen and oxygen isotopes to determine nitrogen sources to Michigan rivers, and using boron isotopes to quantify septic contamination in freshwater systems.


Ph.D. The University of California Riverside, Earth Science

Graduate Advisor: Timothy W. Lyons

Dissertation Title: Proxy Applications for Reconstructing Carbon and Sulfur Cycling in Ancient Marine Environments

B.S. The University of Georgia, Geology

Recent Publications

Hancock, L.G., Hardisty, D.S., Behl R.J., and Lyons T.W., 2019, A multi-basin redox reconstruction for the Miocene Monterey Formation, California, USA: Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology., v. 520, p. 114-127, 10.1016/j.palaeo.2019.01.031.

Feenstra, E.J., Birgel, D., Heindel, K., Wehrmann, L.M., Jaramillo-Vogel, D., Grobety, B., Frank, N., Hancock, L.G., Van Rooij D., Peckmann, J., and Foubert A., in review, Constraining the formation of authigenic carbonates in a recent seepage affected cold-water coral mound by lipid biomarkers: Geobiology.

Walker, S.E., Hancock, L.G., Bowser, S.S., 2017, Diversity, biogeography, body size, and fossil record of parasitic and suspected parasitic foraminifera: A review: Journal of Foraminiferal Research, v. 47, p. 35-56.

Tarhan, L.G., Haddad, E., Solon, C.M., Dahl, R.M., Hancock, L.G, Henry, S.E., Joel, L.V., and Thompson, T.J., Droser, M.L., 2016, Seafloor colonization in the earliest Paleozoic: evidence from the Cambrian of Death Valley: Proceedings of the Death Valley Natural History Association, p. 3-27.

Loyd, S.J., Sample, J., Tripati, R.E, Defliese, W.F., Brooks, K., Hovland, M., Torres, M., Marlow, J., Hancock, L.G., Martin, R., Lyons, T.W., and Tripati, A.E., 2016, Methane seep carbonates yield clumped isotope signatures out of equilibrium with formation temperatures, Nature Communications, v. 7, article 12274.

Hancock, L.G., Walker, S.E., Perez-Huerta, A., and Bowser, S.S., 2015, Population dynamics and parasite load of a foraminifer on its Antarctic scallop host with their carbonate biomass contributions: PLOS ONE, 10(7): DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0132534.

Current CV


Luwen Wan


Research Interest

Generally, I have interests in interdisciplinary research to better understand the complexity of coupled human environment systems. Specially, I have focused on climate change, extreme climate events, landscape pattern evolution and their impacts on surface runoff, water quality and ecosystem services. Currently, my research involves nutrients transport in Great Lakes Basin using a spatially explicit modeling method, also nutrient simulations using a fully-coupled, process-based integrated hydrologic model in agricultural watersheds.


2018-Present: Ph.D. student in Earth and Environmental Sciences, Michigan State University
2016-2017: visiting student in Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Purdue University
2014-2017: MS in Geography, South China Normal University
2010-2014: BS in Land Resource Management, Hunan Normal University

Recent Publications:

  • Zhang, Z., Wan, L., Dong, C., Xie, Y., Yang, C., Yang, J. and Li, Y., 2018. Impacts of Climate Change and Human Activities on the Surface Runoff in the Wuhua River Basin. Sustainability, 10(10), p.3405.
  • Chen, Y., Zhang, Z., Wan, L., Zhang, J., Yang, C., Ye, C. and Li, Q., 2018. Identifying Risk Areas and Risk Paths of Non-point Source Pollution in Wuhua River Basin. Acta Georaphica Sinica, 73(09), p. 1765-1777.
  • Wan, L., Zhang, Z., Dong, C., Yang, C. and Zhang Z., 2017. The study on influence factors of hanjiang river basin of reference crop evapotranspiration change and its spatio-temporal change. Journal of south China normal university (natural science edition),49(04),p.73-81.
  • Wan, L., Zhang, Z. and Li, Y., 2017. Temporal and spatial analysis of extreme temperature and precipitation events in hanjiang river basin during the past 50 years. Journal of China Agricultural University, 22 (09), p.133-144.
  • Li, Y., Zhang, L., Qiu, J., Yan, J., Wan, L., Wang, P., Hu, N., Cheng, W. and Fu, B., 2017. Spatially explicit quantification of the interactions among ecosystem services. Landscape Ecology, 32(6), pp.1181-1199.


Ally Brady

I grew up in a small farming suburb of Grand Rapids, Michigan where my parents greatly enforced the value of curiosity and discovery. Being surrounded by freshwater my entire life fostered a deep appreciation for the environment and the dynamic interactions between humans and varying ecosystems. During my undergraduate experience at The Ohio State University, I was able to utilize my passion as well as supporting coursework to perform research of groundwater contamination. My Bachelor’s Thesis redirected my interests from analyzing water issues that had already occurred to prevention of water issues that may arise. In my graduate education, my goal is to directly impact people in a positive way through science discovery which is why I work with the Hydrogeology Lab at MSU.

Research Interests

I am interested in the effects of anthropogenic water use on overall environmental, economic, and energetic sustainability. A majority of water withdrawal is used for agricultural irrigation, and irrigation is paramount to sustainability. Through data analysis and the use of models created by the hydrogeology lab, the USGS, and more, I investigate the impacts of agricultural irrigation on the energy footprint and water resources of the Central Valley in California.


  • PhD Student August 2018-Present, Environmental Geosciences, Michigan State University
  • BS Earth Sciences 2014, The Ohio State University, magna cum laude,  with Honors in Arts & Sciences, and Honors Research Distinction in Earth Sciences

Recent Abstracts

Ben McCarthy

Research Interests

My interests in hydrology include groundwater processes, geology and its influence on both surface and groundwater, and subsequent impacts on water use. My involvement in research focuses on the properties of large scale aquifers in the central continental United States. Measuring the relationship between water use and energy expenditure, using analytical methods to evaluate total energy expenditure in a region, more specifically; Kansas. Water and energy are the one of the most important factors that determine agricultural yield and efficiency, impacting all steps of the agricultural process. I’m interested in quantifying this process and evaluating the current methods involved in increasing efficiency on a large scale.

Quercus Hamlin

Research Interests

Cycles of nitrogen and phosphorus have been driven out of balance by anthropogenic processes. My work seeks to understand nutrient sources and transport at regional scales. As an NSF graduate research fellow, I led development on the Spatially Explicit Nutrient Source Map (SENSMap) in the Great Lakes Basin, a product that quantifies seven N and P source applications at 30 m resolution. I am interested in modelling the fate of these nutrient applications as they move across the land surface and through groundwater.


MS Student September 2017 – present, Environmental Geosciences, Michigan State University
BS Geographic Information Science 2017, Michigan State University

Recent Works

Hamlin, Quercus F., Kendall, Anthony D., Martin, Sherry L., Whitenack, Henry D., Roush, Jacob A., Hannah, Bailey A., Hyndman, David W. “Spatially Explicit Nutrient Source Map (SENSMap): Quantifying Landscape Nutrient Inputs in the Great Lakes Basin.” Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences (In Review)

Hamlin, Quercus F., Kendall, Anthony D., Martin, Sherry L., Hyndman, David W. “Quantifying Nutrient Loading Landscapes using Spatially Explicit Maps in the Great Lakes Basin”. Poster. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting. 12 December 2018.

Hamlin, Quercus F., Kendall, Anthony D., Martin, Sherry L., Hyndman, David W. “Quantifying Nutrient Inputs in the Great Lakes Basin with SENSMap (Spatially Explicit Nutrient Source Map)”. Oral. US International Association for Landscape Ecology Annual Meeting. 11 April 2018.


Quercus Hamlin CV Feb 25 2019

Jeremy Rapp

Research Interests

The health of the High Plains Aquifer is directly related to the extent and demands of the irrigated landscapes that exist within it.  My research aims to further the understanding of this irrigation by generating high resolution GIS map products  using remotely sensed imagery fused with environmental data.



Posters, Papers, and Publications

Poster: AGU 2017

Poster: AGU 2019

Jacob Roush

Research Interests

Human activity is drastically altering the planet we live on in ways that we don’t fully understand. I am interested in studying the effects of hydropower installation, changes in land use, and climate change on the hydrologic regime of the Mekong River Basin. Study of this system will give crucial insight into how human activity affects one of the world’s largest rivers and how we could further manage this system to sustainably provide fresh water for the millions who depend on it.


Curriculum Vitae – Jacob Roush

Brent Heerspink

Research Interests

I am interested in the geochemical and hydrological controls on water quality and water availability. My specific interests include fate and transport of contaminants, groundwater remediation technologies, nutrient transport and cycling, groundwater-surface water interactions and emerging contaminants. My previous research has focused on the transport and remediation RDX in groundwater, and biogeochemical controls on nitrate exchange between ground and surface water.  My current research is investigating the hydrologic and geochemical responses to hydropower development in the Brazilian Amazon.


Brent – CV 2017 V2

Tianfang Xu


Research Interests

Numerical simulation and uncertainty quantification of groundwater flow and solute transport

Water resources sustainability

Coupled climate, hydrologic and social-economic systems

Model-data fusion

Machine learning



Ph.D. Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Jun. 2012 – Aug. 2016

Thesis title: An efficient fully Bayesian approach to uncertainty quantification of groundwater models

M.S. Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Aug. 2010 – May. 2012

Thesis title: Use of data-driven models to improve prediction of physically based groundwater models.

B.S. Geotechnical Engineering, Nanjing University, China, Sep. 2006 – Jun. 2010



Xu, A. J. Valocchi, M. Ye and F. Liang. Quantifying model structural error: efficient Bayesian calibration of a regional groundwater flow model with a data-driven error model and fast surrogates. Water Resources Research, submitted.

Xu and K. Guan, Temporally and spatially ranging response of rainfed corn yield to climate and extreme events in the U.S. Corn Belt, Global Change Biology, in preparation.

Xu, A. J. Valocchi, M. Ye, F. Liang and Y.F. Lin. Bayesian calibration of groundwater models with input data uncertainty. Water Resources Research, in revision.

Xu and A. J. Valocchi. A Bayesian approach to improved calibration and prediction of groundwater models with structural error. Water Resources Research, 51(11): 9290-9311, 2015.

Xu and A. J. Valocchi. Data-driven methods to improve baseflow prediction of a regional groundwater model. Computers & Geosciences, 85(B): 124-136, 2015.

Choi, J., E. Amir, T. Xu and A. J. Valocchi. Learning relational Kalman filtering. In Proc. 29th AAAI Conf. on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI-15), Austin, TX, Jan. 2015.

T. Xu, A. J. Valocchi, J. Choi, and E. Amir. Use of machine learning methods to reduce predictive error of groundwater models. Groundwater, 52(3): 448-460, 2014.

Complete CV

CV (Last Updated September 2016)


Chanse Ford

FieldWorkResearch Interest

My research interests involve examining shallow groundwater, surface hydrology and groundwater-surface water interactions through empirical observation and geochemical (isotopic) methods. My interest in this area stems from a desire to help our society better manage these natural resources and best prepare for the changes to these systems due to global climate change. My current research involves examining changes to groundwater and river systems in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula due to changes in snow melt timing and dynamics. Previous research involved the use of stable isotopes to better understand the relations of groundwater, surface water and precipitation at the headwaters of the White River in Manistee National Forest and quantifying groundwater discharge into the White River through the use of seepage meters.


2016-Present: Ph.D. student in Environmental Geoscience, Michigan State University

2014-2016: MS in Geoscience, Western Michigan University

2009-2014: BS in Geology, University of Southern Indiana



Doss, P.K., Feldhaus, A, Ford, C., Stephens, M. and Chambers, T.B., 2014, Long-Term Monitoring of Water Resources with Undergraduate Student Collaborators: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Vol. 46, No. 6, p.527.

Ford, C. M. and Doss, P. K., 2013, Characterizing Groundwater Seepage In The Headwaters Of The White River, Manistee National Forest, Michigan: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Vol. 45, No. 7, p.201

Ford, C.M., Hampton, D.R., Doss, P.K., and Krishnamurthy, R.V., 2015, Characterizing Heterogeneous Discharge in the Headwaters of the White River, Manistee National Forest, Michigan: Abstract M-35 presented at the 2015 AGU Chapman Conference: The MADE Challenge for Groundwater Transport in Highly Heterogeneous Aquifers: Insights from 30 Years of Modeling and Characterization at the Field Scale and Promising Future Directions, Valencia, Spain, 5-8 October.



Ford – Curriculum Vitae August 2016




Sam Smidt


Research Interests

My research interests include using sensing techniques to quantify near surface transport in order to serve a global society. Currently, I am modeling recharge in the Southern High Plains Aquifer in response to land use and climate change in order to better understand the future of food and water sustainability in this heavily irrigated area. Previously, I have quantified surface water-groundwater exchange using electrical resistivity tomography in order to better understand hyporheic transport as a design goal for stream restoration structures.


2014-Present, PhD student in Environmental Geoscience, Michigan State University

2012-2014, MS in Geoscience, University of Iowa

2008-2012, BS in Geology, Environmental Science, Olivet Nazarene University


Smidt, SJ, JA Cullin, AS Ward, J Robinson, MA Zimmer, LK Lautz, TA Endreny. A comparison of hyporheic transport at a stream restoration structure and natural feature. Department of Engineering Research Open House, Iowa City, IA. 2014.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward. Using electrical resistivity tomography to quantify hyporheic exchange. James F. Jakobsen Graduate Conference, Iowa City, IA. 2014.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward. Electrical resistivity tomography as a hydrogeophysical tool for characterizing surface water-groundwater interactions. Annual Meeting of the Iowa Academy of Science, Fort Dodge, IA. 2014.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward. Quantifying the controls of discharge and regional hydrogeologic gradients hyporheic exchange. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA. 2013.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward. Quantifying the controls of discharge and regional hydrogeologic gradients hyporheic exchange. Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Denver, CO. 2013.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward, JA Cullin, J Robinson, TA Endreny, LK Lautz, MA Zimmer. Do stream restoration structures create hyporheic zones that are comparable to those at natural features? Society for Freshwater Science, Jacksonville, FL. 2013.

Smidt, SJ, AS Ward. Experimental design for quantifying the role of stream gradient and discharge on hyporheic exchange. James F. Jakobsen Graduate Conference. Iowa City, IA. 2013.

Ward, AS, J Robinson, TA Endreny, JA Cullin, SJ Smidt, LK Lautz, MA Zimmer. Do stream restoration structures create hyporheic zones that are comparable to those at natural features? American Geophysical Union, San Francisco, CA. 2012.


Smidt, SJ, JA Cullin, AS Ward, J Robinson, MA Zimmer, LK Lautz, TA Endreny. A comparison of hyporheic transport at a stream restoration structure and natural riffle feature. Groundwater. In Review.


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Xiao Liu

XiaoPersonal History

Growing up near a beautiful coast in China, I gained my love for water and rocks. Studying in major about soil and water presented a good basic for my research. I have a strong desire to learn more about nature and help to improve the environment. Satellite-based Estimates of Groundwater Depletion in India by Matthew Rodell published in Nature in 2009 attracted my attention on ground water, which shown in the article, changed more considerably than surface water in India. It is significantly important and challenging, so I made my decision to focus on groundwater more than surface water in my following career.

Research Interests

I am interested in exploring groundwater and how to use groundwater best for human.  I’m currently focused on coupling human and natural systems and improve water resources sustainability in metropolis.


  • M.S.   Michigan State University                       Environmental Geosciences                 2013-Present
  • M.S.   Beijing Normal University, China          Hydrology and Water Resources        2010-2013
  • B.S.    Beijing Forestry University, China         Soil and Water Conservation              2006-2010

Complete CV

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Kayla Cotterman

kayla_imageResearch Interests

I am interested in studying the High Plains Aquifer through the CLASS project.  Some of the aspects that intrigue me include the effect of climate change as well as the economic impact of the aquifer.  I will use various models to study the aquifer’s changes throughout time such as rate of depletion and recharge.


  • B.S. Atmospheric Science, Purdue University, 2013
    Certificate, Learning Beyond the Classroom, Purdue University, 2013

Lin Liu

LinLin Liu is a masters student in the Department of Geological Sciences. Before she came to Michigan State University, she had pursued a Bachelor degree in Environmental Science from Sichuan University (P.R China). She studied at State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry for a one-year exchange program and participated in the “MELNHE” project. During her course of education, she identified her professional goal as understanding biophysical processes and integrating social aspects with the natural system. Currently, she is using modeling technique to understand swichgrass cultivation impact on Michigan’s water resources for her thesis.  Click here to view her resume.

Complete CV

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Laura Bailey

LauraI grew up in Elk, Rapids, a small town in Northern, Michigan located on Grand Traverse Bay. Growing up so close to Lake Michigan and spend a lot of my time. This experience made me develop a strong appreciation for environmental quality and I wanted to apply my interest in the environment to my career. Now I am a senior in my undergraduate studies at Michigan State University.  I plan to graduate in the spring of 2014 with my degree in Environmental Engineering with a concentration on water resources. I have been working in the hydrogeology lab since January 2013.

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Henry Whitenack

IMG_1502Henry Whitenack is a junior from Troy, MI, pursuing an Environmental Geosciences major with a Specialization in Environmental Studies.  Henry found interest in nature at a young age, going on camping trips with his family, picking up rocks wherever he went. His Environmental Studies class in High School strongly influenced him in pursuing his major. He plans on going into a Master’s program after completing undergraduate studies at MSU. Along with geology, Henry enjoys the outdoors and is an avid US National Men’s Soccer Team fan.

Jillian Deines

DeinesCoringCoupled Human-Water Systems

My research integrates the biophysical, socioeconomic, and political components of human water use to inform sustainable water management. I use satellite remote sensing and economic data to drive physical models of human-water systems, including agricultural and urban water uses. These systems models are then used to understand human water use, governance, and the associated impacts on water resources.


Personal Website

Deines Curriculum Vitae – September 2017



  • Ph.D., Michigan State University, May 2013 – present
    Environmental Geosciences
  • M.S., Biological Sciences, University of Notre Dame, 2009
    Thesis: Conservation management under climate change: on tropical drought resistance, non-native species response to increasing disturbance, and assisted migration
    Advisor: Jessica J. Hellmann
  • B.S., Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Saint Louis University, 2006
    Minor: Anthropology


Blaze Budd

SmalfutPersonal History

Some say I was born with a rock in my hand. My first memories are of rocks. In fact, all of my memories involve rocks. When I was very young I was playing in a stream looking for rocks, I noticed that rocks in the stream were much smoother than rocks on the banks of the stream. I thought “That’s pretty neat”. At that moment I knew that I wanted to learn about rocks and water, forever. My only wish was that there was some field of study that incorporated both of those concepts.


No Formal Education.

Nomadic skills acquired from years spent living with wild bears in the heart of the Siberian Forests.

Served as a test dummy for many governmental experiments in the early 2000’s.