Modeling water and solute transport in the vadose zone for groundwater resource management requires an accurate determination of soil hydraulic parameters. Estimating these parameters by inverse modeling using in situ observations is very common. However, little attention has been given to the potential of pore water isotope information to parameterize soil water transport models. By conducting a Morris and Sobol sensitivity analysis, we highlight the interest of combining water content and pore water isotope composition data in a multi-objective calibration approach to constrain soil hydraulic property parameterization. We then investigate the effect of the sampling frequency of the observed data used for model calibration on a synthetic case. When modeling is employed in order to estimate the annual groundwater recharge of a sandy aquifer, it is possible to calibrate the model without continuous monitoring data, using only water content and pore water isotopic composition profiles from a single sampling time. However, even if not continuous, multi-temporal data improve model calibration, especially pore water isotope data. The proposed calibration method was validated with field data. For groundwater recharge estimate studies, these results imply a significant reduction in the time and effort required, by avoiding long-term monitoring, since only one sampling campaign is needed to extract soil samples.
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