Program Reviews

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Last updated on Tue 13 Jul 1999 at 05:47 PM

I've written reviews of Visual Modflow and Processing Modflow for Windows (PMWIN) Argus ONE and Groundwater Vistas. I also contributed to a review of GMS 2.0 (Ground Water, Vol 35, No. 4 p. 728-729.). The developers of GMS have posted that review on their web site. On this page, I briefly list my opinions about the primary differences I see between the three programs. Newer versions of the Argus ONE MODFLOW interface, Visual MODFLOW, Processing MODFLOW have been released since these reviews were written. Thus those reviews are now outdated.

One person has sent in a comment about Visual MODFLOW.

two comments have been sent in about Argus ONE:

Argus ONE 4.2 with MODFLOW/MT3D PIE 1.0 Visual Modflow 2.0 PMWIN 4.0 Groundwater Vistas 2.15
Operating system Windows 95 or Windows NT DOS (but can run under Windows too). Windows (but can't perform many common Windows functions). Windows 95, 98, and NT
Supplementary Packages supported PCG2, DE4, BCF5 BCF2, PCG2, HFB, CHD BCF2, PCG2, HFB, CHD, STR, IBS, RES, DE4 BCF3, PCG2, HFB, CHD, STR, IBS, Variable anisotropy package
Unsupported packages included in the MODFLOW executable All USGS Packages plus variable anisotropy package STR, GFD, BCF3 BCF3, GFD1, TLK1 TLK, DE4, GFD, RES
Supported programs MODFLOW96, MT3D MODFLOW88, MODPATH, ZONEBDGT MT3D MODFLOW88, PMPATH, Water Budget Calculator, MT3D, PEST (UCODE in PMWIN 5) MODFLOW88, MODFLOWT, MODFLOW/SURFACT, MODPATH, MT3D, RT3D, PATH3D, PEST
Version of MT3D supported public domain public domain public domain public domain
Model types 3D, quasi-3D 3D 3D, quasi-3D 3D, quasi-3D
particle tracking not supported steady state, transient steady state, transient steady state, transient
ease of use very easy very easy very easy very easy
automatic specification of proper stress periods no yes no no
grid refinement best better good better
Handling of cell properties during grid refinement best better good better
ability to expand physical model dimensions yes no yes yes
ability to inport data from MODFLOW input files no yes no yes
units conversion yes yes limited no
editing modes plan view plan and cross-sectional view plan view plan view
ability to directly edit all input parameters no no yes yes (except recharge layer)
on-line help extensive limited extensive extensive
special features Extremely flexible methods for entering property values, Source code for MODFLOW PIE is in the public domain and can thus be modified by anyone with the requisite skills to support additional packages or methods, New interpolation methods and other new functionality can be supplied by the user by writing plug-in extensions. WHS solver, and data interpolation data interpolation, stochastic field generator MODFLOW documentation converted to help files, Telescopic mesh refinement, simulate variable density conditions using equivalent fresh water heads. calibration statistics and plots
Ease of use of water budget program not currently supported easier easy easier
graphics quality good better good better
theoretical maximum model size (may require enormous memory to achieve) limited only by MODFLOW96 itself (200 layers maximum) and computer memory 500x500x60 2000x2000x80 limited only by MODFLOW 88 itself 80 layers maximum) and computer memory


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©1996, 1997 Richard B. Winston,
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