Skip to Main Content

Claire Welty


Professor of Environmental Engineering
Director, Center for Urban Environmental Research and Education

Contact Information

Welty Lab WebsiteCenter for Urban Environmental Research and Education (CUERE)
Technology Research Center (TRC), Room 102


Ph.D. Civil and Environmental Engineering – M.I.T., 1989
M.S. Environmental Engineering – The George Washington University, 1983
B.S. Environmental Sciences – University of Virginia, 1976

Research Interests

Our interest is in developing an end-to-end system of field-deployed sensors and fully coupled groundwater-surface water mathematical models to quantify and predict the urban hydrologic cycle and coupled biogeochemical cycles from neighborhood to regional scales. Our goal is to be able to assimilate sensor data into hydrologic and water quality models in near-real time for predicting flow paths, fluxes and stores of water and chemicals on land surfaces and in the subsurface. We work in collaboration with the NSF Baltimore Ecosystem Study Long-Term Ecological Research Site and the USGS MD-DE-DC Water Science Center. While methods are being developed using place-based research in Baltimore area, the methods are widely applicable to other urban areas.

Selected Publications
  1. Bhaskar AS, Welty C. Water Balances along an Urban-to-Rural Gradient of Metropolitan Baltimore, 2001-2009. Environmental & Engineering Geoscience. 2012;18(1):37-50. doi: 10.2113/gseegeosci.18.1.37.
  2. Smith JA, Baeck ML, Villarini G, Welty C, Miller AJ, Krajewski WF. Analyses of a long-term, high-resolution radar rainfall data set for the Baltimore metropolitan region. Water Resources Research. 2012;48(4):n/a-n/a. doi: 10.1029/2011wr010641.
  3. Ramamurthy P, Bou-Zeid E, Smith JA, Wang Z, Baeck ML, Saliendra NZ, Hom JL, Welty C. Influence of Subfacet Heterogeneity and Material Properties on the Urban Surface Energy Budget. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology. 2014;53(9):2114-29. doi: 10.1175/jamc-d-13-0286.1.
  4. Cui Z, Welty C, Maxwell RM. Modeling nitrogen transport and transformation in aquifers using a particle-tracking approach. Computers & Geosciences. 2014;70:1-14. doi: 10.1016/j.cageo.2014.05.005.
  5. Bhaskar AS, Welty C. Analysis of subsurface storage and streamflow generation in urban watersheds. Water Resources Research. 2015;51(3):1493-513. doi: 10.1002/2014wr015607.
  6. Bhaskar AS, Welty C, Maxwell RM, Miller AJ. Untangling the effects of urban development on subsurface storage in Baltimore. Water Resources Research. 2015;51(2):1158-81. doi: 10.1002/2014wr016039.
  7. Seck A, Welty C, Maxwell RM. Spin-up behavior and effects of initial conditions for an integrated hydrologic model. Water Resources Research. 2015;51(4):2188-210. doi: 10.1002/2014wr016371.
  8. Barnes, M.L., C. Welty and A.J. Miller.  Global topographic slope enforcement to ensure connectivity and drainage in an urban terrain. J. of Hydrologic Engineering, 2015; DOI: 10.1061/14 (ASCE)HE.1943-5584.0001306
  9. Cui, Z., C. Welty, A.J. Gold. P. Groffman, S. Kaushal, A.J. Miller.  Use of a three-dimensional reactive solute transport model for evaluation of bioreactor placement in channel restoration. J.  Env Quality, 2016; 45(3), doi: 10.2134/jeq2015.06.0330.
  10. Cole, J.N., A.J. Miller, E. Stapleton, and C. Welty. Quantifying spatial patterns of channel geometry and  stream incision in an urban drainage network, J. of Hydrologic Engineering. 2016; doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)HE.19435584.0001459.