Principal investigator

Jesus Picture

Sampling in Saguache Creek watershed, Saguache, CO

Jesus (Chucho) Gomez-Velez
Assistant Professor of Hydrology
Dept. Earth & Environmental Science
New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology
jesus.gomezvelez at

Office: MSEC 242
+1-575-835-5045 (Phone)
+1-575-835-6436 (FAX)

Interests: Groundwater-surface water interactions, hydrogeology, watershed hydrology, analytical and numerical modeling, data mining and assimilation.

I study the movement of water, solutes, and energy through landscapes and river systems. Most of my current research focuses on the interactions between surface water and groundwater at multiple temporal and spatial scales, ranging from small river bedforms and reaches to continents. This work combines numerical modeling, data mining and assimilation, and a whole lot of field and laboratory experiments. I teach courses on fluid dynamics for earth scientist (Flow and Transport in Hydrologic Systems) and the use of models to adequately represent and understand natural systems (Data-driven modeling in science and engineering).

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2013-15, National Research Program, U.S. Geological Survey
Ph.D. in Earth Sciences, 2013, New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology
M.S. in Hydrology, 2008, New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology
M.S. in Applied Mathematics, 2017, New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology
B.S. in Civil Engineering, 2005, National University of Colombia at Medellin

Graduate students

Chao Wang pictureChao Wang
PhD Student, Hydrology

Chao Wang got both his BS and MS of Engineering in Hydrology and Water Resources from Hohai University in China. He delves into hydrology with the leading of two questions: How does hydrology system work? What can inform us about this complex system? For the first question, Chao is currently focusing on modeling groundwater flow and its interaction with surface water, analytically and numerically, incorporating field observations. More specifically, he is trying to investigate the controlling factors on surface-subsurface flow interactions and its potential response to changing climate. For the second question, Chao has a great interest in applying remote sensing data to hydrology. This was mainly his previous work as a master student. Chao used state-of-the-art GRACE satellite observations to estimate large scale terrestrial water storage changes, its response to changing climate and anthropogenic activities and its implications for sustainable water resource management.

Nathan Wales
MS Student, Hydrology

Nathan’s work focuses on understanding flow and transport processes in Arctic ecosystems. His work is funded by Los Alamos National Lab and DOE.

Ice-wedge polygons are ubiquitous landforms in Arctic ecosystems characterized by large amounts of organic carbon. The degradation of these landforms can result in the release of significant amounts of carbon dioxide or methane, highlighting the importance of understanding their hydrological regimes. This knowledge is fundamental to design future numerical and field experiments, as well as to propose adequate conceptualizations to upscale hydrologic fluxes in Arctic environments.

Rebeca Paulino
MS Student, Hydrology

Rebeca’s work focuses on the use of heat as a natural tracer to estimate connectivity between surface water and groundwater. Her study site is the Values Caldera National Preserve, NM. Her work is funded by NM EPSCoR and NSF.

Sofia Avendano
MS Student, Hydrology

Sofia’s work focuses on the understanding of gas transport in fracture porous media. This work combines field experiments, geophysical observations, and numerical modeling. Her work is funded by DTRA-DOD.

Xiaoqiao Wang
MS Student, Hydrology

Quiao’s work focuses on the use of analog and numerical experiments to understand flow and transport processes in karst systems.