Hydrodynamic and Oil Spill Modeling: Galveston Bay

In Partnership with the Texas General Land OfficeSimulations presented on this web page show the speed and direction of water movement, i.e., currents, in Galveston Bay including East, West, and Trinity Bays.  Currents are shown for a moving three-day window (beginning yesterday and finishing tomorrow) and slide forward each day.  Flows are computed for about four weeks prior to today and extend through about a week beyond today, but only results for a three-day window are shown.

Galveston Bay Models are run and updated daily.

Go to step-thru frames for Galveston Bay

Model Input and Related Data


Data from the Galveston North Jetty station of the Texas Coastal Ocean Observation Network (managed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as station 8771341) is used to estimate tidal forcing for the Galveston Bay TxBLEND model.  Tidal input is composed of the most recent daily tide measurement and forecasted tides, which are adjusted according to the most recent data.  Tidal inputs are applied to the model's Gulf boundary to drive model simulations.  Comparisons between measured tides and hindcasts/forecasts are shown on the TWDB Tide Forecasts webpage for Texas.  The differences in the measured data and the hindcasts are largely due to the effect of meteorological phenomena on the tide.


Wind velocity input used in the TxBLEND hydrodynamic model is derived from the NAM Model of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) by Texas A&M University Oceanography Department in cooperation with the Texas General Land Office.  The specific wind time series is calculated for the Galveston Bay grid node at Latitude/Longitude: 29.456° N, 94.833° W.  Wind plots show the hindcast/forecast wind speed and direction that is input into TxBLEND.

River Inflows

Inflows to the Galveston Bay TxBLEND model are based on mean daily gaged flows from the Trinity River, San Jacinto River, Chocolate Bayou, Buffalo Bayou, plus several other gaged bayous that flow into the Houston Ship Channel.  Other flow inputs include monthly estimates of historical water intakes and returns from power plants in the region and statistically estimated constant-value ungaged flows from Dickinson, Highland, Cedar Bayous, Clear Creek and estimates of smaller streams to the estuary.

The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) and the Texas General Land Office (TGLO) make no representations or warranties regarding the accuracy, completeness, suitability, fitness for any purpose, or any other warranty with regard to the information, illustrations or other data provided herein.  These data are not suitable for navigational purposes.