What is Groundwater Modeling and Why is it Important?

What is Groundwater Modeling and Why is it Important?

Groundwater is an essential source of water resource systems. It is extracted from aquifers through pumping wells and supplied for domestic use, industry & agriculture. The groundwater encounters these underlying issues –

  • Waterlogging
  • Groundwater mining
  • Seawater Disturbance
  • Groundwater Pollution

Hydrologists regularly work on groundwater models for groundwater flow and foresee aquifer circumstances.
In this blog, we will understand Groundwater modeling & its importance in detail!
Groundwater Modeling is a proficient tool for groundwater management and remediation. Models are formed to examine & predict future performance.
Some of the different models are –

  • physical (laboratory) models,
  • mathematical models (process-based numerical models),
  • screening models and generic models (hypothesis testing)

Most groundwater models are developed for forecasting (prediction), & many times reconstruct past situations and perform engineering calculations too. The system helps in different ways! Some of them are –

  • To know the total volume to be drawn annually from an aquifer
  • Pumping location and artificial recharge wells and their rates
  • Conclusions on groundwater quality

So, while we go further details- a few critical things need to be assessed for Model Accuracy post relying on the level of understanding of the flow system –

  1. Some degree of site investigation
  2. Precise conceptualization

The groundwater models are most costly to construct, time-consuming, rarely accurate, so we need to extra careful while executing the apt model to use. While the good part of an effective model is that it can assimilate all information in a system! It can validate complex properties, test concepts, and hypotheses, consistently test multiple scenarios, evaluate data needs, and provide other relevant information too.

Some typical answers for groundwater require important hydrogeological information and analysis, along with a professional judgment. Knowing the values of aquifer parameters and hydrologic stresses like pumping can answer questions such as-

  • How will pumping affect groundwater levels in the coming years?
  • How will planned land-use change groundwater discharge?
  • How will climate change affect groundwater levels?
  • Or Identify potential leakage!

Let us read on the importance of groundwater-modeling system –

  • Forecasts expected artificial or natural changes in the system – Some models also carry a high degree of certainty.
  • Analyzes various assumptions with groundwater!
  • Understand the ideologies of groundwater flow related to several general or specific problems.
  • Regulates water balance (in terms of water quantity),
  • Helps to know about the quantitative features of the unsaturated zone,
  • Simulates water flow and chemical migration in the saturated region including river-groundwater relations,
  • Assesses the impact of changes of the groundwater management on the environment,
  • Setts-up monitoring networks, and
  • Setts-up groundwater protection zones

The groundwater-modeling system comprises several stages, such as conceptualization, data collation, software choice, model design, and model calibration against measured data. Post the completion, the companies offering groundwater-modeling services also get them double-checked, ensuring model accuracy and robustness.

We at Fulcrum in California offer hydrogeology and groundwater modeling services. Fill in the “Request for Quote” form on our website to know more details on groundwater modeling. We would be happy to serve you!

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