Distributed memory parallel groundwater modeling for the Netherlands Hydrological Instrument

J. Verkaik*, J. D. Hughes, P. E.V. van Walsum, G. H.P. Oude Essink, H. X. Lin, M. F.P. Bierkens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Worldwide, billions of people rely on fresh groundwater reserves for their domestic, agricultural and industrial water use. Extreme droughts and excessive groundwater pumping put pressure on water authorities in maintaining sustainable water usage. High-resolution integrated models are valuable assets in supporting them. The Netherlands Hydrological Instrument (NHI) provides the Dutch water authorities with open source modeling software and data. However, NHI integrated groundwater models often require long run times and large memory usage, therefore strongly limiting their application. As a solution, we present a distributed memory parallelization, focusing on the National Hydrological Model. Depending on the level of integration, we show that significant speedups can be obtained up to two orders of magnitude. As far as we know, this is the first reported integrated groundwater parallelization of an operational hydrological model used for national-scale integrated water management and policy making. The parallel model code and data are freely available.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105092
Pages (from-to)1-15
JournalEnvironmental Modelling and Software
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • Distributed memory
  • Groundwater
  • Integrated modeling
  • Netherlands Hydrological Instrument
  • Numerical modeling
  • Parallel computing


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