National Weather Service seeks IT expertise to develop next-gen water prediction capabilities

The National Weather Service is working to deliver new flood and water supply mapping capabilities by the end of the decade.
Evidence of flash flooding across Badwater Road is seen as Death Valley National Park partially reopens two weeks after record-setting rainfall caused a historic flash flood on August 20, 2022 in Death Valley, California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

The National Weather Service is looking for IT expertise to improve its prediction and analysis of floods and water supply and quality in light of climate change, pollution, population growth and aging infrastructure.

NWS‘s Office of Water Prediction needs engineers, technicians, program and project managers, data scientists, and software developers to deliver three improved or innovative capabilities sought by the decade’s end: the National Water Model (NWM), flood inundation mapping (FIM) services and an enterprise hydrofabric solution.

A contract resulting from NOAA’s sources sought notice would cover development of a Next-Generation Water Resources Modeling Framework starting in 2025 with a testing environment for optimizing both the NWM and FIM. The framework would be updated annually.

Details of the new contract were published by the agency earlier this month in a performance work statement on


The chosen contractor would also be expected to improve FIM services helping NOAA make flood emergency response decisions by improving the depiction of where, when and how infrastructure is impacted.

Lastly the contractor will establish an enterprise hydrofabric solution — a digital representation of significant water features on and below the land’s surface — supporting both the NWM and FIM. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, of which NWS is a part, is developing an earth system modeling framework to which all three capabilities are key and that will help with decision making.

“Over the last decade, NWS has taken proactive steps to transform and innovate its modeling capacity, as well as move into a partner and customer-centric service delivery model to create a climate-ready nation (CRN) that is prepared for and responds to weather, water and climate-dependent events,” reads NOAA’s performance work statement. “Building a CRN was identified by the secretary of Commerce as one of the top Department of Commerce priorities.”

The winning contractor will work out of its own facilities, and NOAA is interested in improving small business competition through this sources sought. Responses are due by 5 p.m. EDT on Sept. 8, 2022.

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