Another successful European HEC Software Workshop

Delegates gathered at CCT Venues, Barbican, London for a three-day event dedicated to the HEC hydraulic and hydrological modelling software – HEC-RAS, HEC-HMS, HEC-DSS and HEC-ResSim. New for this year was a two-day HEC-HMS training course.

Organised by Felicity Clarke, our Training Co-Ordinator, the workshop took place from Tuesday 25 to Thursday 27 July and was presented by lead software developers, Matt Fleming, Mike Bartles and Alejandro Sánchez – all the way from the Hydrologic Engineering Centre (HEC) in California, USA.

Overall the event was a great success with delegates learning things they never knew they could do with the software, as well as networking with other professionals and modellers within the industry.

Thanks to the HEC software developers for their invaluable time and travel from America. Also, to the other presenters and poster contributors for their time, knowledge and insight.

Using HEC

The poster session showcased projects that demonstrated how the HEC software had been used, focussing on the new 2D functionality. The posters discussed were:

  • Modelling the Panama Canal Reservoir System with HEC- ResSim – Vern Bonner, Bonner Consulting
  • Environment Agency Lune Tributaries Update: Transitioning from 1D to 1D – 2D models -Gavin Hodson – Engineer Flood Risk Drainage, JBA Consulting
  • Strategic modelling study for Paramaribo, Suriname using HEC-RAS 2D – Jose Sabatini – Chartered Senior Analyst, JBA Consulting
  • Using HEC-RAS 2D to investigate nature-based approaches – Jack Dudman – Analyst, JBA Consulting


Feedback from the event suggests delegates found it incredibly beneficial to meet and ask questions with the software developers. Several people also discussed the differences between American approaches to modelling compared to here in the UK and Europe.

Suggestions for future development included an online user forum, email updates of new HEC releases and another similar event to take place next year.

“Subgrid idea looks really interesting.”

“Great venue, convenient and plenty of food and refreshments!”

“Look forward to revamping some of our old HEC-RAS models using knowledge from today.”

“There are always many new things in the HEC software, so it is really useful to learn about developments, hopefully in 2018!”

“The workshop provided an excellent opportunity to talks to the guys from HEC-RAS and ask those questions google didn’t even know the answer to. The overview of future releases of HEC-RAS shows just how far the software has come and the new features will definitely help with future modelling projects. The case study presentations provided a great insight into how people are using the software on different projects.”

“I learned quite a lot from the event on hydrological modelling and how to apply HEC software to practical situations. Features discussed not only concentrated on the software, but also on general hydrological methods, which I found particularly useful.”

HEC Workshop

Day 1

  • Keynote session – The HEC software family and its future development
  • New features in HEC-RAS v 5.1
  • Practical workshop demonstration – how to develop a combined 1D/2D flow model from scratch using the new software tools and features.

HEC-HMS training course

Day 2

  • HEC-HMS and other associated packages specialising in hydrological catchment modelling
  • Overview of the capabilities of the software, discussing representations of catchments, reservoirs, routing reaches, numerous hydrological loss modelling options, and the data import tools available in the software
  • Example of how to build a catchment model from scratch in HEC-HMS
  • Various ways precipitation can be represented, in hydrological modelling in general
  • Loss models available in HEC-HMS.

Day 3

  • Unit hydrograph theory, including some practices used in the United States
  • Using HEC-HMS
    • Calibrate parameters of a standard unit hydrograph based on recorded data
    • Derive a data-based unit hydrograph using streamflow and rainfall data.
  • Useful optimisation and calibration tools available in HEC-HMS
  • Tips for optimising hydrological models.
  • Hydraulic routing methods typically used in hydrological modelling software
  • Developments in the HEC suite of software planned for the near future.

Want to know more?

Contact Felicity Clarke to register your interest for future HEC events. You can also find out more about other training events, across many different topics, on our training webpages.


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