Prof. Bayani Cardenas (CV)
I study the broad topic of flow and transport dynamics of natural hydrologic systems. I am primarily trained as a hydrogeologist and I earned all my degrees are from Earth science departments. The scales of my investigations span from a few microns inside pores to thousands of kilometers of rivers, watersheds, and basins. Our dynamic research group uses a variety of approaches including conventional hydrologic and water quality monitoring, geophysical surveys, remote-sensing, analogue experiments, and mathematical modeling including high-performance computational models. I am particularly motivated by problems that cross disciplinary boundaries which require drawing ideas and approaches from different fields.

Post-doctoral Researchers

none at the moment

PhD Students including visitors


Mike O’Connor

BS Amherst College (Geology and Music), MS University of Texas-Austin

I am most interested in the hydrologic and biogeochemical processes occurring at and near the surface of the Earth.  I use field and laboratory techniques as well as numerical modeling to understand and represent these complex systems.  My current research focuses on the variably saturated flow and nutrient transport dynamics of Arctic permafrost systems.  I hope to use this work to help describe the mechanisms for terrestrial Arctic carbon export.  I am also very interested in the intersection between water science and policy, especially in Texas, and am a co-author for the blog “Texas Water Policy” (here).  In my spare time, you could find me swimming, climbing, or playing keyboard.

Mike’s website



Stephen Ferencz

BA and MA (Geology), University of California-Berkeley

I am interested in understanding surface water-groundwater processes in dynamic systems such as rivers and drainage basins and relating these processes to surface water and groundwater availability and quality.  I am also interested in exploring the influence of varying geological and geographical settings on surface water-groundwater processes as well as the potential effects of climate change, urbanization, and increased demand for water resources due to population growth.

Stephen’s website


Anna Turetcaia

BA Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova (Finance), BS Queens College, City University of New York (Envi. Science)

Near surface geological processes are mostly attributed to physical and chemical changes in the environment, and often pay little to no attention to the crucial part played by microorganisms. My interest is studying geochemical, physical and biological aspects involved in the nutrient cycle at the groundwater / surface water interaction boundary called the hyporheic zone.  The implications resulting from a more profound understanding of processes involved in the nutrient cycle in this zone could lead us towards improvements in management of various fresh water reservoirs.


Cansu Demir

BS and MS (Environmental Engineering), Middle East Technical University

With increasing concerns on global climate change, there has been a growing interest in the potential impacts of it to groundwater reservoirs along with the surface waters. My principal research interest is based on the interaction between these major reservoirs in regional and local scales with the emphasis on water balance, saltwater intrusion, and climate variability. Use of field observations, space driven data and coupled simulation models are the tools required to understand the major mechanisms and make projections for the future states of these resources.

Cansu’s website


Anzy Lee

BS Handong University, MS Seoul National University, Currently a PhD student at Purdue University (adviser: Dr. Antoine Aubeneau)

I am interested in hydrodynamic transport processes, particularly surface-subsurface water interactions in rivers and coastal area. My current research focuses on the numerical investigation of how the riverbed morphology impacts hyporheic exchange processes.

MS Students

Micaela Pedrazas

BS (Geophysical Engineering and Humanitarian Engineering), Colorado School of Mines

I seek to better understand surface water-groundwater interactions and fluid dynamics in aquifers through the integration of various datasets ranging from remote sensing and geophysical surveys to well data and laboratory experiments. I desire to tackle the challenges associated with quantifying and monitoring groundwater. Ultimately, I seek to direct my skills and knowledge to help find innovative solutions to complex problems that can help inform management decisions.


Undergraduate Honors Students and Research Assistants

Zachary Mungia

Former PhD Students and Post-doctoral Fellows

Parentheses show immediate position after UT or last known position

  • Matthew Kaufman, PhD Geological Sciences, 2018 (Linus Pauling Postdoctoral Fellow, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)
  • Eric Guiltinan, PhD Geological Sciences, 2018 (Postdoctoral Fellow, Los Alamos National Laboratory)
  • Lichun Wang, PhD Geological Sciences, 2015, Postdoc, 2015-2018 (Associate Professor, Tianjin University)
  • Wen Deng, Postdoc, 2010-2014 (Assistant Professor, Missouri University of Science and Technology)
  • Lizhi Zheng, PhD Geological Sciences, 2017
  • Kevin Befus,  PhD Geological Sciences, 2015 (Assistant Professor, University of Wyoming)
  • Peter Zamora, PhD Geological Sciences, 2015 (Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina- Wilmington)
  • Kuldeep Chaudhary,  PhD Geological Sciences, 2013 (Assistant Professor, Kent State University)
  • Audrey Sawyer, PhD Geological Sciences, 2011 (Assistant Professor,  Ohio State University)

Former MS/MA Students

Parentheses show immediate position after UT or last known position

  • Jeffery Watson, MS Geological Sciences, 2016 (Hays-Trinity Groundwater Conservation District)
  • Raquel Flinker, MS Geological Sciences, 2014 (Schlumberger, Brazil)
  • Alyse Briody, MS Geological Sciences, 2014 (USGS New Mexico)
  • Mike Kanarek, MS Geological Sciences, 2013 (Intera)
  • F. Alexander Norman, MS Geological Sciences, 2013
  • John Nowinski, MS Geological Sciences, 2010 (Pastor, Behling, & Wheeler)
  • Travis Swanson, MS Geological Sciences, 2010 (PhD student at UT)
  • Blair Stanley, MS Geological Sciences, 2009 (BP, Houston)
  • Wai Sum Chan, MA Science and Math Education, 2011 (high school teacher)
  • Meredith Mackey, MA Science and Math Education, 2008 (middle school teacher)
  • Ashleigh Barber-Bomar, MA Science and Math Education, 2008 (high school teacher)

Former Undergraduate Students and REU/RET Fellows

Parentheses show immediate position after UT or last known position

  • Sebastian Muñoz, BS Geological Sciences 2018
  • Kindra Nicholaides, BS Geological Sciences 2018
  • Lauryn Martinez, REU student, 2017, University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez
  • Aimee Ford, BS Geological Sciences, 2015 (law school, University of Michigan)
  • Hannah Leiberg, REU student, BS Environmental Engineering (University of Maryland-Baltimore County), 2013 (grad school, University of Nevada-Reno)
  • Julianne Wooten, BS Geological Sciences, 2012
  • Ben Bass, BS Geological Sciences, 2011 (grad school, Rice University)
  • Michael Markowski, BS Geological Sciences, 2010
  • Anne Dunckel, BS Geological Sciences, 2010 (grad school, University of Virginia; StreamWatch)
  • Nancy Pattyn, RET fellow, 2010, Anderson High School
  • Laura Merner, REU student, BS Geography (Clark Univ), 2008 (grad school, University of Maryland-Baltimore County)