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Course Description

Surface Water Modeling System with Flo2DH and SMS

PROGRAM AREA: Hydraulics
Instructor-led Training (ILT)Instructor-led Training (ILT)
Calendar Year
Host Price
4 Days
2.4 Units
$875 Per Participant

TRAINING LEVEL: Accomplished

CLASS SIZE: Minimum: 20 Maximum: 26


Special Note **Effective March 30, 2015 this course is no longer offered. It has been replaced with NHI 135095 Two-Dimensional Hydraulic Modeling of Rivers at Highway Encroachments. All session requests should be made under course no. 135095.**

The host is responsible for providing 15 computers with the following minimum configuration: 850 MHz Intel Pentium III Processor or equivalent with 128 MB RAM, Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6a or 98 Second Edition or 95 (SR-1), 100 MB available disk space, CD-ROM drive, and 1024 x 768 color video display.

The course presentation provides a balance of hydraulic theory, background of the finite element method, data requirements necessary to operate the Flo2DH module of the Finite Element Surface Water Modeling System (FESWMS) computer program and to use of Surface-Water Modeling System (SMS) in the development of input data files and the analysis of the data output.

The Flo2DH is a depth averaged two-dimensional surface water model for analyzing complex flow patterns in river or tidal situations. The program has been designed for modeling bridges and hydraulic structures commonly found in highway hydraulic applications. The program is capable of modeling bridges, bridges in pressure flow, culverts, weir flow over the roadway, and general and local scour through the reach being analyzed. The model is capable of handling steady and unsteady flow through hydraulic systems. Because of the intensive input data requirements and large amounts of output generated by the Flo2DH computer program, the pre- and post-processing program SMS is used in the course. SMS is capable of interactively building finite element networks, including the input data files necessary to use the Flo2DH computer program. The program is also capable of graphically presenting the output from Flo2DH, using a variety of formats.

Participants will receive a notebook that includes course materials, a Flo2DH user's manual and SMS user's manual, including copies of the software used in the course. Non-State highway agency course participants will receive a demonstration version of the proprietary SMS computer program.

Prior to the beginning of the course, participants are strongly encouraged to enroll in the Web-based training entitled, 135091 basic Hydraulic Principles Review. Mastery of the concepts covered in this WBT is important to successful completion of the Instructor-led training.


Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Apply the fundamentals and use the capabilities of the Flo2DH computer program to develop two-dimensional water surface elevations and velocity fields
  • Develop input data necessary for use in the Flo2DH computer program
  • Use SMS as a pre- and post-processing program for the Flo2DH computer program
  • Use SMS to build finite element networks and input data files for use with the Flo2DH computer program, including to graphically view and manipulate the output


Federal, State, and local hydraulic engineers who have responsibility for the design and analysis of highway stream crossings. In order to derive the most benefit from this training, course participants should have knowledge of the fundamentals of open channel flow and should be familiar with the general concepts associated with two-dimensional surface water flow modeling. Experience with Windows computer programs is helpful.

If you have questions about this NHI training, please contact NHI at or 877.558.6873.


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Host this Course

The National Highway Institute (NHI) has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). In obtaining this accreditation, NHI has demonstrated that it complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, NHI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.


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