The Modeling Process and Model Validation


  • Chin-Fu Tsang

    1. Earth Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720.
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    • Chin-Fu Tsang is a Senior Scientist at the Earth Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, University of Calgornia. He received his B.Sc. from the University of Manchester, England, and his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. His current research interest includes flaw and transport in fractured rocks, coupled thermomechanical and hydrochemi-calprocesses, and borehole testing methods.

  • Discussion open until May 1, 1992.


The safety assessment of underground disposal of nuclear or toxic wastes requires the use of models. Such models need to be validated to ensure, as much as possible, that they are a good representation of the actual processes occurring in the real system. In this paper an attempt is made to take a broad view by reviewing step by step the modeling process and bringing out the need for validating every step of this process. Thus, model validation includes not only comparison of modeling results with data from selected experiments, but also evaluation of procedures for the construction of conceptual models and calculational models as well as methodologies for studying data and parameter correlation. The need for advancing basic scientific knowledge in related fields, for multiple assessment groups, and for presenting our modeling efforts in open literature for public scrutiny is also emphasized.