Irrigation and Drainage Engineering

Irrigation and Drainage Engineering

Program Coordinator:
Dr. Jose Chavez
jose.chavez@colostate.edu
(970) 491-6095


The Irrigation and Drainage Engineering program educates students in the application of engineering principles to support useful plant life, with minimum degradation of soil and water resources. The primary objective is to understand soil, water and plant relationships and how they can be applied to better manage natural resources in the production of food and fiber. Irrigation and Drainage Engineering program, especially at the graduate level, is structured to be interdisciplinary. In addition to increasing their understating of engineering fundamentals, students are encouraged to appreciate environmental and ecological effects of irrigated agriculture. This is important since irrigated agriculture has come under increasing criticism for being a heavy user of scarce water resources and for polluting soil and water resources.

Graduate studies in Irrigation and Drainage Engineering typically consider issues like the following:

  • Soil-water-crop relationships
  • Analysis for crop water requirements
  • On-farm irrigation system design
  • On-farm irrigation water management
  • Design of water delivery and distribution systems
  • Water control and measurement in irrigation systems
  • Drainage of irrigated lands
  • Environmental concerns related to irrigation and drainage – salt problem, nutrient leaching, and reduction of stream flows in rivers.