What is FEFLOW? FEFLOW is a professional software package for modeling fluid flow and transport of dissolved constituents and/or heat transport processes in the subsurface. FEFLOW contains pre- and post processing functionality and an efficient simulation engine. A user-friendly graphical interface provides easy access to the extensive modeling options. FEFLOW is a completely integrated system from simulation engine to graphical user interface. It also includes a public programming interface for user code. Application Examples FEFLOW is suitable for numerous different applications in flow and transport processes simulation in porous media, ranging from lab scale to continental scale. A few typical examples are listed here: Groundwater Management Geothermal Energy (Deep and Near-Surface) Mine Water Management Geotechnical Applications Industrial Porous Media Design Survey of Saltwater Intrusion Study of Pollutant Dispersion Coupled Groundwater/Surface-Water Simulation (Linkage with DHI MIKE11) Flexible mesh generators Finite-element discretization allows to use complex unstructured meshes that closely match natural structures while obeying requirements such as element size, element angles, etc. For large modeling areas, generation is supported by sophisticated automation algorithms to ensure efficient work. Automatically generated meshes also have to be adapted to internal geographical structures, like rivers or well locations. As any single mesh generation approach cannot be expected to perform optimally under all conditions, FEFLOW offers a number of different mesh-generation algorithms and different options of user influence on the generation process. Parallel computing Transient calculations of complex regional models for long time periods require significant computational effort. Long simulation times can occur, even using the latest hardware available. Parallel processing allows a significant reduction in CPU times on multiple-processor platforms. In FEFLOW tasks of parallel structure as matrix assembly are processed in parallel on the different CPUs. Finite-element method Spatial discretization of the study area is a prerequisite for any numerical modeling. Classic groundwater simulation codes use finite difference discretization. In contrast, FEFLOW is based on the finite-element technique. Major advantages of finite-element modeling include: Unstructured meshing, thus much better representation of features like rivers, fractures, well locations by adaptation of the mesh Better representation of sloping layers and anisotropy Local mesh refinement without having to refine the whole column/row Moving meshes for free-surface calculations Automatic mesh refinement and coarsening Less computational effort due to reduced element numbers for large regional models Broad range of small-scale and large-scale applications GIS/CAD interface In most practical applications, the basic spatial data are available either in GIS (e.g., ESRI formats) file format or in a CAD-like format (e.g., AutoCAD exchange format). Direct import of these data formats helps to avoid intermediate conversion routines for transferring the basic data to the groundwater model. In the post processing step, data are easily transferred back to the GIS or CAD system to provide the results in data formats compliant to the project framework. FEFLOW can handle GIS as well as CAD data for import and export at all stages of modeling, e.g., to provide geographical input for mesh generation, parameter distribution, etc. Where appropriate, different regionalization methods are provided to transfer the basic data to the finite elements or mesh nodes. Using GIS files, attribute data can be directly transferred to the groundwater model. Alternatively, all data input can be performed manually or by importing ASCII files. Up-to-date visualization tools The days of presenting modeling results in large tables of figures are long gone. Today’s customers expect elaborate isoline maps, pathline diagrams, cross-sectional and 3D views and animations, which can also be used to present complex hydrogeologic conditions to the public. FEFLOW addresses that need by its planar, cross-sectional and 3D visualization features. Using FEFLOW three-dimensional visualizations of all model parameters and modeling results (like movements of contaminant plumes, etc.) can be produced.

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