Water Science and Engineering 2011, 4(4) 357-373 DOI:   10.3882/j.issn.1674-2370.2011.04.001  ISSN: 1674-2370 CN: 32-1785/TV

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one-dimensional unsaturated water flow model
groundwater model
coupled numerical model
unsaturated-saturated water flow
YAN -Zhu
ZHA -yuanyuan
TONG -juxiu
YANG -jinzhong
Article by Yan,.Z
Article by Zha,.Y
Article by TONG,.J
Article by Yang,.J

Method of coupling 1-D unsaturated flow with 3-D saturated flow on large scale

Yan ZHU, Yuan-yuan ZHA, Ju-xiu TONG, Jin-zhong YANG*

State Key Laboratory of Water Resources and Hydropower Engineering Science, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, P. R. China


A coupled unsaturated-saturated water flow numerical model was developed. The water flow in the unsaturated zone is considered the one-dimensional vertical flow, which changes in the horizontal direction according to the groundwater table and the atmospheric boundary conditions. The groundwater flow is treated as the three-dimensional water flow. The recharge flux to groundwater from soil water is considered the bottom flux for the numerical simulation in the unsaturated zone, and the upper flux for the groundwater simulation. It connects and unites the two separated water flow systems. The soil water equation is solved based on the assumed groundwater table and the subsequent predicted recharge flux. Then, the groundwater equation is solved with the predicted recharge flux as the upper boundary condition. Iteration continues until the discrepancy between the assumed and calculated groundwater nodal heads have a certain accuracy. Illustrative examples with different water flow scenarios regarding the Dirichlet boundary condition, the Neumann boundary condition, the atmospheric boundary condition, and the source or sink term were calculated by the coupled model. The results are compared with those of other models, including Hydrus-1D, SWMS-2D, and FEFLOW, which demonstrate that the coupled model is effective and accurate and can significantly reduce the computational time for the large number of nodes in saturated-unsaturated water flow simulation.

Keywords one-dimensional unsaturated water flow model   groundwater model   coupled numerical model   unsaturated-saturated water flow  
Received 2011-04-14 Revised 2011-09-22 Online: 2011-12-30 
DOI: 10.3882/j.issn.1674-2370.2011.04.001

The work was supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (Grant No. 2010CB428802), the Scholarship Award for Excellent Doctoral Students granted by Ministry of Education, the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, and the Ph. D. Candidates’ Self-research Program of Wuhan University in 2008.

Corresponding Authors: Jin-zhong YANG
Email: jzyang@whu.edu.cn
About author:


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