MARE3DEM is a multidimensional electromagnetic modeling code for geophysical exploration and the 3D successor to the freely available MARE2DEM code.  MARE3DEM uses an unstructured tetrahedral mesh to efficiently discretize complex model domains and can calculate highly accurate EM responses by using automatic iterative mesh refinement that is guided by a goal-oriented error estimator. The code is currently being developed under funding support from the Consortium for Parallel Adaptive Finite Element Modeling for 3D Electromagnetic Geophysics at Scripps Institution of Oceanography.  Although we plan to eventually release the MARE3DEM code to the general public in the distant future, our funding sponsors receive exclusive early access.  


  • Graduate student Yuxiang Zhang and Prof. Kerry Key
    Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
  • Prof. Jeff Ovall
    Fariborz Maseeh Department of Mathematics and Statistics, 
    Portland State University
  • Prof. Michael Holst 
    Center for Computational Mathematics, 
    UC San Diego

Interested in joining the consortium? 

Please contact Professor Kerry Key (kkey@ucsd.edu)

Update November 2014: The MARE3DEM code is now available to consortium sponsors!

The images below show an example of the highly efficient mesh refinement possible with our goal-oriented error estimator. This test model, although somewhat simplified, includes important complex structures typical for exploration problems, including 3D continental shelf bathymetry,  an underlying resistive oil reservoir and a deeper resistive basement with variable topography.TOpo1

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Here’s a vertical slice through the course starting mesh, which produces EM responses with over 100% relative error due its poor approximation of the 3D EM differential equation:v1

Here’s a slice through the final adaptively refined mesh, which produces EM responses accurate to 1%:V5

The image below shows the electric and magnetic field responses computed at 0.25 Hz for models with and without the reservoir.Untitled 3