Effective Solute Transport Simulation

June 2, 2013



This one-day short course will focus on the essential aspects of effective solute transport simulation. The course is designed for professionals and researchers who use solute transport models and want to use them better. Attendees will leave the course with a set of detailed course notes that can be used for subsequent self-study.

The course will begin with a discussion of analytical solutions that are available for transport analyses. These solutions are ideal for developing quickly a rough idea of the “right” answer. This section will include a discussion of how some of these solutions have been implemented in modules that can be used for the preliminary screening of sites.

The second section of the course will be devoted to using the popular simulator MT3DMS efficiently and correctly. Among the issues that will be addressed are the design of transport models so that the models don’t take too long to simulate, the selection of an appropriate solution technique for a particular problem, and approaches for confirming that the results from a numerical simulation are reliable.

The third part of the course is devoted to two vexing issues associated with solute transport simulation: handling storage changes in unconfined aquifers, and simulating transport with flow models with dry-cell problems.

The final section of the course is intended to provide a showcase for Professor Zheng’s recent advances in the ongoing development of MT3DMS.



1. Analytical solutions and screening modules for solute transport

2. Effective use of MT3DMS

    1. Checking the reliability of MT3DMS results
    2. Selecting an appropriate MT3DMS advection solution option
    3. Understanding and controlling MT3DMS transport step sizes
    4. Interpreting the MT3DMS mass budget
    5. Assessment of appropriate vertical discretization
    6. Implications of the implicit representation of barriers
    7. Development of initial concentration distributions

3. Non-conventional applications of MT3DMS

    1. Simulating heat transport with MT3D
    2. Simulating groundwater age
    3. Modeling dual-domain solute transport
    4. Modeling transport in fractured rock with the dual‑domain approach

4. Advanced issues in the application of MT3DMS

    1. Handling of storage changes in unconfined aquifers
    2. Working with no-dry MODFLOW models
    3. Contaminant Treatment System (CTS) package for simulating pump & treat scenarios
    4. Advanced reaction options

5. Chunmiao Zheng: Recent developments of MT3DMS


Christopher J. Neville

Chris Neville is an Associate with S.S. Papadopulos & Associates, Inc. (SSP&A), and manager of the firm’s Waterloo, Ontario office. He has over twenty years of experience as a hydrogeologist, with particular expertise in the quantitative analysis of groundwater flow and solute transport.  He has synthesized hydrogeologic data, evaluated and designed protections for groundwater resources, developed regional groundwater flow models, and analyzed and designed remedial measures. Mr. Neville has developed and documented large-scale three-dimensional numerical models for industrial, mining, and government clients, and has reviewed numerous site-specific hydrogeologic analyses and groundwater modeling codes. He has extensive experience in the development of work plans for groundwater projects, the direction of groundwater modeling studies, and senior peer review. Mr. Neville is actively involved in the development of professional short courses in the interpretation of pumping tests and groundwater modeling, and he assists in teaching graduate courses at the University of Waterloo.

Vivek Bedekar

Vivek Bedekar has 10 years of experience as a groundwater modeler and software developer. He has worked on various flow and transport numerical models in support of RI/FS activities, water supply issues, saltwater intrusion problems, minimum heads and flows, TMDL, litigation support, RCRA, and CERCLA projects. His experience includes risk assessment modeling and working with analytical/semi analytical models. He has worked on modeling projects in Florida, California, Washington, New York, and Kansas. Besides modeling, Mr. Bedekar is also involved in a variety of software development projects. He has contributed to the development of MODFLOW-SURFACT and MODHMS. At SSP&A, Vivek leads the extension of the capabilities of MODFLOW, MT3DMS, and MODPATH. He has also developed tools like the source screening module (SSM) that implement analytical/semi-analytical solutions in an accessible Excel environment.

Chunmiao Zheng

Chunmiao Zheng is the George Lindahl III Endowed Professor in Hydrogeology and Water Resources at the University of Alabama. He holds a Ph.D. in hydrogeology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. From 1988 to 1993, he was a senior hydrogeologist and director of software development at SSP&A. Since 1993, he has been leading the interdisciplinary hydrogeology program at the University of Alabama. Dr. Zheng is developer of MT3D/MT3DMS, a widely used contaminant fate and transport simulation model, and co-author of the textbook Applied Contaminant Transport Modeling, published by John Wiley & Sons and currently in the second edition. Dr. Zheng has published over 50 papers and book chapters on both applied and theoretical aspects of hydrogeology, contaminant transport, and optimal groundwater management. He is recipient of the 1998 John Hem Excellence in Science and Engineering Award from the National Ground Water Association for outstanding contributions to the understanding of groundwater, and is a fellow of the Geological Society of America.


The course will be held at the Colorado School of Mines (Room TBA). A campus map will be sent upon enrollment.

All Visitor parking areas will have a pay and display parking meter. When arriving on campus for the first time, look for a parking meter, find a space in that location, pay the meter and display the receipt on your dash. You will find brochures at each of our parking meters that can also help guide you around the campus.


The fee for the short course is $495 by 4PM Mountain Daylight Time, May 17, 2013 ($595 after May 17).  You will be invoiced for the tuition balance. The fee covers instruction, course notes, refreshments, and continuing education units. Lodging and meals are not covered. Payment in full must be received prior to the beginning of the course. The registration fee may be paid by check, VISA, MasterCard, AMEX, Discover or purchase order (US Only).

If cancellation is made before May 17, 2013  , tuition will be refunded except for the $100 deposit. Cancellations made after that date will forfeit a $150 processing fee in addition to the $100 deposit. In case of cancellation, the right to course material is forfeited. Substitutions are permitted at any time prior to the start of the course. Please be advised that if the program is cancelled due to insufficient enrollment, Colorado School of Mines will return all course fees, but will not be liable for any other expenses incurred by the prospective attendees.

To register click here.


The Colorado School of Mines is located in Golden, which is 20 minutes west of Denver, 1 hour west of the Denver International Airport and can be reached by taxi, airport shuttle or rental car. It is strongly recommended that for events held on the CSM campus, attendees select accommodations within .5 miles of the campus if a rental car or personal transportation will not be available, as taxi service and public transportation from other areas may involve significant delays and costs. Lodging is available in Golden, within walking distance of the campus.

Denver Shuttle Service from Denver Airport

To get to SuperShuttle when you land, take the train from the Concourse to the Terminal. Pick up your luggage and proceed to the SuperShuttle counter located on Level 5/Baggage Claim, adjacent to the water feature in the center of the terminal. Counter staff will issue tickets and give directions to the van loading areas. For information, call 1-800-BLUEVAN. Their ticket counters are closed between 12am and 6am. If you arrive between these hours, please use the courtesy phone located at the ticket counter to notify dispatch of your arrival. Please contact a shuttle provider directly for more information on fees and destinations served. Shuttles pick-up and drop-off from Jeppesen Terminal Level 5, Island 3, outside doors 505-507 (east side) and 510-512 (west side).

Super Shuttle International Denver

Phone: (800) 525-3177

Web site: www.supershuttle.com

Rental Cars

All Rental car companies at DIA are located on airport property but are away from the main terminal. Each rental company provides a courtesy shuttle to and from Jeppesen Terminal from their locations. All courtesy shuttles pick-up and drop-off from Jeppesen Terminal Level 5, Island 4, outside doors 505-513 (east side) and 504-512 (west side). If you are arriving in Denver, please follow the overhead signage for the appropriate pick-up location, or check-in at your company's counter in the center of the Terminal.
For more information, please visit at http://www.flydenver.com/rentalcars


Taxis are readily available and service within the eight counties that make up the Denver metro area. Some companies may also provide service to other destinations within the state of Colorado. Check with your cab company of choice (or directly with your driver at the airport) for more information on fares and destinations served. Fares to Golden area are based on the taxi’s meter and it costs about $70-85 plus the $3.75 airport access fee. Taxis pick-up and drop-off from Jeppesen Terminal Level 5, Island 1, outside doors 507-511 (east side) and 506-510 (west side).



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