Groundwater/surface water interaction

Coupled water quantity and quality modelling

The interaction of groundwater and surface water is one of the major concerns in water resources management today. Nearly all surface water bodies interact with groundwater. Therefore, in many cases these two resources need to be treated as a coupled system when looking into water quantity and water quality issues.

FEFLOW enables you to model all relevant processes related to water quantity and quality. With the coupling plug-in IfmMIKE11, our software suite features an efficient tool to couple the groundwater software FEFLOW with the surface water product MIKE 11. A powerful graphical user interface allows you to visualise the interaction between groundwater and surface water and to analyse the patching.

IfmMIKE11 supports the following features:

  • Coupling of river networks and looped networks
  • Coupling of polder areas and floodplains
  • Interaction between lakes and groundwater
  • Automatic setting of constraints within areas representing polders or floodplains
  • Automatic setting of constraints for regular branches
  • Definition of the exchange area between river and groundwater by MIKE 11 cross sections.
  • Mass-transport coupling


  • One tool for integrated modelling of all relevant flow and mass transport processes
  • Realistic representation of exchange processes under various conditions
  • Batch-mode execution
  • Comfortable user interface



ifmMIKE11 (version 2.1 – Update 2016)

IfmMIKE11 couples our groundwater software FEFLOW with our surface water software MIKE 11. You can download ifmMIKE11 and run one of the prepared examples in demo mode. The full version requires a license. IfmMIKE11 is compatible with MIKE by DHI 2012, 2014 and 2016. Please notice that a coupling of MIKE 11 2014 and FEFLOW 7.0 (2016) is not possible. For coupling FEFLOW 7.0 it is required to use MIKE 11 2016. Previous version of FEFLOW 6.x can be also coupled to MIKE 11 (2016). The current plug-in version only supports the coupling with 3D standard layered-based models (prismatic elements) in FEFLOW.

To obtain a license or if you have any questions, you can contact us at

The complete documentation of the plug-in is found in the ifmMIKE11 user manual (the user manual has not been updated to the latest features yet. The updated version will be ready for download at a later stage).