A review of the numerical modelling of salt mobilization from groundwater-surface water interactions

S. Alaghmand, S. Beecham, A. Hassanli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Salinization of land and water is a significant challenge in most continents and particularly in arid and semi-arid regions. The need to accurately forecast surface and groundwater interactions has promoted the use of physically-based numerical modelling approaches in many studies. In this regard, two issues can be considered as the main research challenges. First, in contrast with surface water, there is generally less observed level and salinity data available for groundwater systems. These data are critical in the validation and verification of numerical models. The second challenge is to develop an integrated surface-groundwater numerical model that is capable of salt mobilization modelling but which can be validated and verified against accurate observed data. This paper reviews the current state of understanding of groundwater and surface water interactions with particular respect to the numerical modelling of salt mobilization. 3D physically-based fully coupled surface-subsurface numerical model with the capability of modelling density-dependent, saturated-unsaturated solute transport is an ideal tool for groundwater-surface water interaction studies. It is concluded that there is a clear need to develop modelling capabilities for the movement of salt to, from, and within wetlands to provide temporal predictions of wetland salinity which can be used to assess ecosystem outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-341
Number of pages17
JournalWater Resources
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Floodplain Salinization
  • Groundwater-Surface Water Interactions
  • Numerical modelling
  • Salt mobilization

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