Groundwater software is a general term for computer software that analyzes groundwater for various purposes. A groundwater software application may provide surface water modeling, evaluate groundwater remediation, or otherwise help out with groundwater management. Groundwater software may be used by parties such as engineering firms that are hired by municipalities or private property owners to provide groundwater services such as water quality testing or storm water control.
Specific software for groundwater might be useful in dealing with a flood plain, where local government is often responsible for using flood plain areas responsibly. It may be used in predicting the flow of storm water, where municipalities have to regulate water runoff in order to satisfy all of the many private property owners in a specific local area. Groundwater software might also help responsible parties find out more about the quality of local drinking water, or what has to be treated in order to provide drinking water quality.
Software tools for groundwater work can be written in many different computer languages, and used with different types of applications and interfaces. Many groundwater software programs are written for simple operating systems such as the open source Linux system, or in Unix, a specialized administrators operating system that many basic computer users don’t know much about. Some older groundwater software programs may even run in DOS, the command prompt operating system that was used before Windows and Apple operating systems became a standard in modern computing.
The software tools that cover groundwater issues are often written for a specific user audience. This would include engineers, researchers, public officials, government workers, and others who typically look at groundwater issues. Organizations like the U.S. Geological Survey, a part of the U.S. Department of the Interior, provide online resources with lists of groundwater software programs for these specific users, to help this relatively small target audience find the tools that they need. The USGS site also contains a list of obsolete groundwater software to help users understand what was popular in the past, versus what is being used currently to analyze groundwater and provide groundwater services.
Tools like groundwater related software applications generally enhance a public administration’s ability to deal with concerns about local groundwater, and can help prevent making expensive mistakes. These tools might be used to provide presentations to a public audience at a public municipal meeting. Officials might also use them to draft detailed reports about groundwater that can be made available to the public to inform them about their community.