Roanoke River Basin Model




Need for a Hydrologic Model

The Roanoke River basin covers 9,580 square miles of total drainage area, 3,503 square miles entirely within North Carolina.  The basin supplies water to the population of nearly 344,638 people (census 2010) residing in 19 North Carolina counties within the basin.   

A computer model is a needed tool for evaluating surface water resources management in the basin.  For long term planning, the State can use the model in making regulatory decisions by evaluating potential impacts of proposed projects with significant water withdrawals within the basin as well as interbasin transfer permit applications.  Local units of government as well as the State can use the model to plan for increased water use due to growth, and to evaluate the effects of operational and regulatory constraints during a drought condition. 


OASIS, a patented, mass balance, water resources simulation/optimization model was developed for the Roanoke River basin. This basinwide model uses the finest practical geographic resolution and timestep. It covers both North Carolina and Virginia portion of the Roanoke River basin. This model is fully functional for power generation and optimization along with water resources management and optimization. 

Model Version 2014

The current version of the model includes hydrologic period from Jan 1930 to September 2011, later extended to December 2018 with provisional data; and has water withdrawal data for year 2010 as base case scenario and 50-year planning projection period scenarios from 2020 to 2060 for every 10-year interval. 

Model Development Documents and Reports:


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Contact Neelufa Sarwar ( or Pam Behm ( to request access to the Roanoke OASIS 2014 model.

If you have a comment or question on the Roanoke plan/model, please contact us at