A review of open software resources in python for electrical resistivity modelling

Yonatan Garkebo Doyoro, Ping Yu Chang, Jordi Mahardika Puntu, Ding Jiun Lin, Tran Van Huu, Diah Ayu Rahmalia, Meng Shiun Shie

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Geophysical modelling performs to obtain subsurface structures in agreement with measured data. Freeware algorithms for geoelectrical data inversion have not been widely used in geophysical communities; however, different open-source modelling/inversion algorithms were developed in recent years. In this study, we review the structures and applications of openly Python-based inversion packages, such as pyGIMLi (Python Library for Inversion and Modelling in Geophysics), BERT (Boundless Electrical Resistivity Tomography), ResIPy (Resistivity and Induced Polarization with Python), pyres (Python wrapper for electrical resistivity modelling), and SimPEG (Simulation and Parameter Estimation in Geophysics). In addition, we examine the recovering ability of pyGIMLi, BERT, ResIPy, and SimPEG freeware through inversion of the same synthetic model forward responses. A versatile pyGIMLi freeware is highly suitable for various geophysical data inversion. The SimPEG framework is developed to allow the user to explore, experiment with, and iterate over multiple approaches to the inverse problem. In contrast, BERT, pyres, and ResIPy are exclusively designed for geoelectric data inversion. BERT and pyGIMLi codes can be easily modified for the intended applications. Both pyres and ResIPy use the same mesh designs and inversion algorithms, but pyres uses scripting language, while ResIPy uses a graphical user interface (GUI) that removes the need for text inputs. Our numerical modelling shows that all the tested inversion freeware could be effective for relatively larger targets. pyGIMLi and BERT could also obtain reasonable model resolutions and anomaly accuracies for small-sized subsurface structures. Based on the heterogeneous layered model and experimental target scenario results, the geoelectrical data inversion could be more effective in pyGIMLi, BERT, and SimPEG freeware packages. Moreover, this study can provide insight into implementing suitable inversion freeware for reproducible geophysical research, mainly for geoelectrical modelling.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3
JournalGeoscience Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • BERT
  • Inversion freeware
  • Pyres
  • ResIPy
  • Resistivity modelling
  • SimPEG
  • pyGIMLi


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