Learn about MODFLOW's latest version: MODFLOW 6

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) has just released the latest MODFLOW version: MODFLOW 6. It is the sixth core version of MODFLOW to be released by the USGS (previous core versions were released in 1984, 1988, 1996, 2000, and 2005).

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An overview of Freewat, the new MODFLOW interface in QGIS

A new and fresh opensource preprocessing and post processing tool is available. Freewat 0.4 was launched as a beta version and publicly available upon registration from this website: http://freewat.eu/. Most of the developers are italian and the project is funded under the H2020 program from the European Union and the Regione Toscana. The software comes with clear and descriptive documentation and tutorials plus the installation instructions. 
This article show the most important features of Freewat and its capabilities for representing the geospatially referenced regional groundwater flow.

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7 Solved Questions about Conceptualization, Construction and Calibration of Hydrogeological Models

Constructing and calibrating numerical models can be a challenging task in terms of time, available data and professional abilities of the modeler. Since this work is usually done alone, there are many questions about the conceptualization of the physical environment, the construction of the model and the calibration with observed data. Based on the questions asked by some attendees of our webminars, we have written this article for all the confused hydrogeological modelers.

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Key concepts for modeling groundwater flow driven by geothermal energy

For most hydrogeologists numerical modeling of groundwater flow is still new and brings several challenges when dealing with input data, model construction and simulation. Most of our modeling efforts are done in gravity driven groundwater flow on shallow aquifers solved by Darcy law equations. Sometimes we excel ourselves in conceptualizing "advanced" topics as unsaturated flow, contaminant transport, variable density or baseflow calibration. What about if we consider another driving force besides gravity? Will out lives be happier/miserable? Could we cope with the huge amount of required data?

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How relevant is evapotranspiration in the groundwater flow regime?

Evapotranspiration is the mixed process of soil evaporation and transpiration of plants. This process is not included in many Hydrology books or in hydrological methods like the rational method, SCS, among others. Evapotranspiration is not relevant in when calculating maximum floods, but it is considered in water balances of superficial water and groundwater.

This article shows the relevance of the evapotranspiration process in the conceptualization and modeling of groundwater, indicating which would be the errors and inaccuracies of not considering this process.

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What data do you need for hydrogeological modeling?

A hydrogeological evaluation needs a numerical representation of the groundwater flow regime. Numerical models are a great tool to evaluate the current and future conditions of groundwater flow. In order to make a model, it is necessary to have geological and climate data, among other types.

The following list describes the input data needed to carry out a hydrogeological modeling. The information required could be either in tabular or vectorial format.

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Cost (& Time) optimization of hydrogeological studies

Impact on groundwater flow from mining facilities could be evaluated many times along the different mining phases, many of these evaluations are done by different consultant companies. This post is focused on strategies and best practices for cost (& time) optimization, specially for hydrogeological investigation on mining projects. 

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Importance of numerical modeling

In the actual society, the environmental aspects are a concern when planning projects related to water resources. In this context, numerical models are useful tools to represent the superficial water and groundwater cycle and determine the contamination effects.

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How to Pythonify (modify and run with Python) a Pumping Test Model in MODFLOW

Working with graphical user interfases (GUIs) can be slow when one wants to do a severe trial-error runs on a groundwater flow model. Pumping test intepretation requires a lot of attemps in order to calibrate the steady and transient parameters as hydraulic conductivity, vertical anisotropy, specific storage and specific yield. 

This tutorial show a procedure to generate the modflow files and run them by scripts in Python. The process allows to setup a generic model for a pumping test interpretation where the pumping rates, and observed head can come in separate files or arrays.

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Simulation of Radial Drains for Tailings Drainage with MODFLOW Tutorial

MODFLOW is a versatil and applied computer code written in Fortran capable of modeling groundwater flow on steady and transient conditions. MODFLOW can simulate a diverse sort of groundwater flow management cases due to its packages and solvers. This tutorial shows the application of MODFLOW for the simulation of radial drains in a mine tailings facility. The simulation considers 16 drains of 60 m length over a simulation period of 1000 days.

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Key concepts to become a numerical modeler

Nowadays, water resources management requires a better understanding of nature and a superior evaluation of the impacts caused by humans. We are concerned and focused on sustainability because we live on a planet with limited resources and changing environments. In some way, we know that the actual changes are results from past and present actions along with the effect of nature cycles.

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Simulation Tutorial of Heavy Metals Bioaccumulation at Wetlands with MODFLOW-MT3DMS

If we want to talk about concentrations, solutes and contaminant transport in groundwater, we need to mention the Source/Sink concepts and natural concentrations in groundwater. Sources represent solute mass entering the system, which could be representing spills or natural lixiviation processes. Sinks are the zones where water with solute concentrations leave the system.

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Have you missed all the latest MODFLOW fun?

While emailing with an ex boss, I have realized that working with MODFLOW has changed dramatically over the last 4 years. This is copy of the email:

I realized that if you don’t know MODFLOW-NWT you might have missed a lot of fun on MODFLOW. Lets talk from the beginning.

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Tailing and waste dump seepage evaluation and remediation

Current and historical mining activities have a seepage and waste-dumps legacy that are the concern for mining companies, population and regulatory authorities.

Old waste-dumps have not been regulated and most of the old tailings have been deposited in soils without covering. Tailing deposits and waste-dumps should be analyzed in a particular way because of the ground, instalation details, mineralized body geology, mined type, weather and other parameters.

Recent mining activities count with major engineering in waste-dumps and tailing deposit instalations, as well as better monitoring evaluation seepage. However, there is still a seepage risk coming from old and new waste-dumps and their transport constituties a potential environmental issue.

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Questions on MODFLOW with Model Muse

Some questions from a follower:

Thanks for agreeing to help. I developed a simple mode just to check if it works. But I get this error (attached). There are NO streams in my study area so do I still need to give my model a input for drainage package? I wanted to go around it but I could not proceed, therefore I created streams as drainage lines from DEM.

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How to probe your MODFLOW modeling skills?

Follower: Over the past couple of weeks I have intensively studied the tutorials, groundwater modeling blogs, and usgs links you have posted on the hatariwater tumblr site. I cannot thank you enough for provided such easy to follow and concise videos. They have completely opened my eyes to a whole new section of hydrology that I didn't know even existed.

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Feasibility and environmental assessment of hydropower plants

Hydropower is the energy source that requires no fossil fuels and doesn´t present carbon emissions to the environment in its operational stage. Within the global energy framework there is great demand for both types of energy, renewable and non-renewable, and a special interest in the search of undeveloped hydroelectric resources in high potential and the Andean countries.

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Tutorial to install MODFLOW with MODEL MUSE

This is a quick tutorial to install MODFLOW with MODEL MUSE on Windows.

This tutorial includes;

  • Search for the MODFLOW - MODEL MUSE website 
  • Install of MODEL MUSE
  • Introduction to the Graphical User Interfase
  • Setup of MODFLOW NWT and other Packages
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How to do a groundwater flow model with your company logo

I wanted to do some “art” with numerical models. This is in fact a workaround on the use of MODFLOW with Model Muse to create artistic expressions based on hydraulic heads, particle tracking and soon with contaminant transport modeling.
I don’t know if this effort will turn people closer to numerical modeling, but I had much fun doing this. Next time I will put Scarlett Johansson or Robert Downey Jr on a pumping test model.

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