HydroShare is an online, open-source, collaborative system being developed for sharing hydrologic data and models as part of the NSF’s Software Infrastructure for Sustained Innovation (SI2) program. The goal of HydroShare is to enable scientists to easily discover and access hydrologic data and models, retrieve them to their desktop, or perform analyses in a distributed computing environment that may include grid, cloud, or high performance computing. Scientists may also publish outcomes (data, results or models) into HydroShare, using the system as a collaboration platform for sharing data, models, and analyses. The project will expand the data sharing capabilities of the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc. (CUAHSI) Hydrologic Information System (HIS), a nonprofit research organization supported in part by the National Science Foundation which represents more than 130 U.S. universities and international water science-related organizations. It works to advance water science research and promote understanding of the central role of water to Earth and society by developing infrastructure to advance water science research. Dr. David Tarboton, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Utah State University, is the overall HydroShare project Principal Investigator, and Ray Idaszak of RENCI is Collaborative PI at UNC Chapel Hill.

RENCI’s Role

RENCI leads the HydroShare distributed software development effort requiring collaboration between domain scientists, software engineers, and software developers across ten organizations.  The development effort of HydroShare expands the data sharing capabilities of the CUAHSI Hydrologic Information System: It broadens the classes of data accommodated, enables sharing of models and model components, and leverages social media functionality to enhance collaboration around hydrologic data and models.  RENCI leads development of the HydroShare architecture that is defined as a stack of storage and computation, web services, and user applications.  A web framework, Django, provides user interface, search, social media functions, and services.  The integrated Rule-Oriented Data System (iRODS) is used to manage distributed data content and perform rule-based background actions on data and model resources, including parsing to generate metadata catalog information and the distributed execution of models and workflows.  A web browser is the main interface to HydroShare, however a web services applications programming interface (API) supports access through HydroDesktop and other hydrologic modeling systems.

Project Team

  • Chris Calloway (Project Lead)


  • Utah State University
  • Brigham Young University
  • Tufts University
  • University of Illinois
  • University of Virginia
  • University of Washington


  • National Science Foundation awards ACI-1148453, ACI-1148090, EAR-1338606, OAC-1664018, OAC-1664061, OAC-1664119.