A framework toward developing a groundwater conceptual model

A. Izady, K. Davary, A. Alizadeh, A. N. Ziaei, A. Alipoor, A. Joodavi, M. L. Brusseau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Developing an accurate conceptual model is the most important step in the process of a groundwater numerical modeling. Disorganized and limited available data and information, especially in the developing countries, make the preparation of the conceptual model difficult and sometimes cumbersome. In this research, an integrative and comprehensive method is proposed to develop groundwater conceptual model for an unconfined aquifer. The proposed method consists of six steps. A preliminary step (step 0) is aimed at collecting all the available data and information. The output of the first step as “controlling observations” is conceptual model version 00. This step should be rigorously checked due to its critical role in the controlling of final conceptual model. Step 2 determines the aquifer geometry. The output of this step is conceptual model version 01. Step 3 is responsible to determine hydrodynamic properties and its output develops conceptual model version 02. Step 4 evaluates the surface and subsurface interactions and lateral in/out groundwater flows. The output of this step is conceptual model version 03. Step 5 is to integrate the results from other steps and to deliver the final conceptual model version. The accuracy level of the conceptual model and the annual groundwater balance is also determined at this step. The presented groundwater conceptual model procedure was implemented for the Neishaboor plain, Iran. Results showed its usefulness and practicality in developing the conceptual model for the study area.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3611-3631
Number of pages21
JournalArabian Journal of Geosciences
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2014


  • Conceptual model
  • Development
  • Groundwater
  • Iran

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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