Groundwater Flow & Transport Modeling with GMS

Course Description

Instituto Superior Técnico

This course held in cooperation with the Instituto Superior Técnico

The groundwater modeling training course by Aquaveo is designed as a hands-on, application oriented training course. The course will provide the attendees with the knowledge and tools necessary to solve groundwater modeling problems quickly and efficiently. The course begins with a review of groundwater modeling concepts and then attendees immediately begin building groundwater models. A series of lectures and instructor led exercises will be presented on using GMS with MODFLOW, MODFLOW-USG, PEST, MODPATH, MT3DMS, borehole data, and GIS data. Attendees will learn how to generate numerical models from high-level conceptual models constructed with GIS tools.

Learning Outcomes

  • Perform flow modeling with MODFLOW & MODFLOW-USG.
  • Create conceptual models using GIS objects.
  • Integrate GIS data into groundwater models.
  • Learn to calibrate groundwater models using PEST.
  • Analyze simple transport problems with MODPATH.
  • Learn to model transport with MT3DMS.
  • Create stratigraphy models from borehole and other subsurface data.
  • Learn how to generate professional output of modeling projects.

Course Agenda

Day 1 AM Groundwater Modeling Concepts
Conceptual Model Development, Boundary Conditions
2D vs. 3D, Steady State vs. Transient
Parsimony, Code Selection, Model Calibration, Prediction
Modeling Case Studies
MODFLOW Overview
Packages: Basic, BCF-LPF-HUF-UPW, RCH, WEL, DRN
Day 1 PM MODFLOW - Part II
File formats
Importing models – ascii, VM, GW Vistas, PMWIN
Exporting native text
Trouble shooting MODFLOW models
Day 2 AM Working with Regional MODFLOW Models
Base maps, Conceptual models, Conductance
2D Geostatistics
MODFLOW layer elevations
Interpolation methods
Day 2 PM Site Characterization
Borehole data
User-defined cross-sections
Site Characterization via Horizons
Horizons -> Solids
Horizons -> HUF
Day 3 AM Arc Hydro Groundwater
Data model overview
Web applications - well permitting, water level mapper
Model Calibration
Importing observation well data,Calibration basics
Point observations, Flow observations, Plotting calibration statistics
Day 3 PM Parameter Estimation with PEST
Introduction to inverse modeling, Parameterization
Defining zones with key values, PEST options
Parameter Estimation
Pilot point method, Regularization
Pilot point placement
Applications of Particle Tracking
Transport Modeling Concepts
Advection, Dispersion, Diffusion, Sorption, Decay
Governing Equation
Day 4 PM Open Lab
Instructors available to help with your projects


Alan Lemon - Member of the GMS development team and software engineer at Aquaveo. Alan has years of experience developing groundwater modeling software and teaching. He has also been involved in several consulting projects using GMS to model groundwater systems

Todd Wood - is a civil engineer and groundwater modeler at Aquaveo. Todd has a MS and BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Brigham Young University. He worked for four years as a technical support associate for GMS and AHGW and now works on groundwater modeling projects at Aquaveo. Todd has taught groundwater modeling training courses in the United States, China, and Australia.


The cost of the course is $1595 (USD) per attendee. Save on all registrations made at least 30 days prior to the course – add $100 to the price above for late registration.

Registration includes the following:

  • Instruction and hands-on use of GMS.
  • Comprehensive Course Notes.
  • Software CD containing the GMS software, tutorials, and documentation.
  • A 30-day trial license of the Groundwater Modeling System.
  • 25% Discount (up to $500.00) on the purchase of a GMS license.
  • Coffee/snack breaks

Training Attendee Cancellation Policy

Course Requirements

Participants will be required to provide their own computer with the following specifications:

  • Operating System: Windows XP*, Windows Vista®, Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 10
  • RAM: 4 GB (8 GB recommended)
  • CPU: GMS software is CPU intensive. Some models and utilities integrated with GMS can take advantage of multiple processor cores simultaneously. We recommend the fastest CPU your budget allows.
  • Graphics Card: For all display features to be enabled, OpenGL 1.5 or higher must be supported. The use of a dedicated graphics card is strongly recommended. Integrated graphics cards are often problematic.
  • Display Resolution: 1920 x 1080 or greater
* Limited support for Windows XP with some limitations using certain fonts and display options.
Lisbon, Portugal