• Research Vessels

    IIHR owns a number of research vessels for a variety of data-collection needs.

  • Bathymetric Surveying

    IIHR staff can conduct single-beam and multibeam bathymetric surveys to detect scouring around bridge piers due to frequent flooding, changes in riverbeds near power plant intakes, and more.

  • Shallow-Water Surveying

    IIHR engineers use kayak-based bathymetry for shallow-water surveying.

  • Groundwater Studies

    IIHR has on-staff expertise with groundwater management and data collection.

  • Coring

    IIHR’s research vessels can be set up with vibracore coring equipment used to collect samples or cores of underwater sediments


IIHR maintains and operates field equipment, including research vessels with instruments to measure river flow rates, velocities, depths, and water quality.

Other capabilities include:

  • Single-beam and multi-beam bathymetric surveys
  • Sediment sampling and coring with an onboard drilling rig
  • Large-scale particle image velocimetry (LSPIV)
  • Development and deployment of flood-related instrumentation

It’s important to know what’s happening on the ground (or in the river). Our fieldwork teams use sophisticated technology to gather reliable data that can be used for precision model construction,
computational modeling, and more.

Examples of fieldwork support:

  • Customizing and installing a trailer with a camera on a tall mast to take video images of a creek or stream. Using large-scale particle image velocimetry (LSPIV), researchers estimate river flows based on what’s happening at the surface.
  • Wetland cells built and tested by IIHR, and then installed near the wastewater treatment plant in Iowa City.
  • Iowa Flood Center research includes development and deployment of instruments such as tipping bucket rain gauges, soil moisture probes, stream-stage sensors, and radars. IIHR staff support these efforts to varying degrees and have developed new expertise in the process.