Bureau of Reclamation Banner, Upper Colorado Region
Reclamation Home              Reclamation Offices              Newsroom              Library              Projects & Facilities

Water Measurement App Created by Reclamation's Provo Area Office

image: Measure H20 App logo
Measure H2O app icon

Beginning 1953, Reclamation in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture, printed the first edition of the Water Measurement Manual to provide for more precise water measurement techniques to enhance the accuracy of water delivery, accounting, and irrigation practices; support improved operational efficiencies; and facilitate water conservation. This manual has been revised and reprinted through 2001. In 2007 the Utah Association of Conservation Districts in cooperation with Reclamation produced a pocket reference version of the Water Measurement Manual to support water managers in their day-to-day water delivery duties.

The importance of accurate and reliable water measurement data is essential to the management practices and operational decisions made by public and private water resource agencies and organizations alike. Some of the key benefits include:

  • More equitable allocation and distribution of water shares both on and off farm
  • Improved irrigation practices and reduced negative environmental impacts
  • More efficient metering and seepage loss evaluation data
  • Support for automation technologies
  • Improved data for decisions regarding canal and ditch improvements and prevention of excess runoff
  • Ability to reduce excessive use and enhance conservation

The continuous revisions and additions to the manual reflect the refinements and improvements in water measurement practices made possible through implementation of evolving technology. The design of delivery system upgrades incorporated new technologies resulting in significant efficiency improvements. Not surprisingly, the value of new technology led to water managers expressing an interest in development of a water measurement app for mobile devices that could replace the need do manual calculations based on the pocket reference version of the Water Measurement Manual.

image: H20 app page
Measure H2O app page

In March 2012, Reclamation's Provo Area Office Resource Management Division Manager Edward Vidmar began investigating what it would take to develop such an app. His objective was to design something that would perform a range of water measurement functions including all the necessary calculations to convert staff gage readings to a flow reading based on formulas or mathematical calculations.  He also wanted to include another type of water measurement functionality for dam tenders to make the necessary calculations to replace the need to take water measurement readings using a bucket and a stopwatch. By performing all the mathematical calculations, the new app will reduce the potential for human error and significantly improve the final reading data.

Vidmar began laying out the initial conceptualization for the new app by constructing a slideshow using PowerPoint to depict what each screen in the app should look like. In November 2012, he located a business to handle writing the code for the app for its initial availability for use on iPhone and iPad. The free "Measure H2O" app became available for download in the Apple Store on February 4, 2013.

The app is still undergoing some minor tweaks to improve functionality and a 1.1 version will be soon available as will an Android device version of the app.

** To download the app from the Apple Store:
 Search for:  Measure H2O (letter 'O') or water measure


Last updated: February 7, 2013