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Lecture Hydrogeology

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Water cycle Groundwater Properties Aquifers & Pumping tests UK Aquifers Hydrogeology and Construction Groundwater Contamination

The Water Cycle


Describes the continuous movement of water on, above and below the Earths surface Water moves from one reservoir to another: River to ocean Ocean to atmosphere

Price; Introducing Groundwater


Reservoir
Antarctica Oceans Glaciers Seasonal snow cover Soil moisture Groundwater: shallow Groundwater: deep Lakes Rivers Atmosphere

By physical processes : Evaporation Condensation Precipitation Run-off* Subsurface flow*


*Of most interest to hydrogeologists and engineering geologists

Average residence time


20,000 years 3,200 years 20 to 100 years 2 to 6 months 1 to 2 months 100 to 200 years 10,000 years 50 to 100 years 2 to 6 months 9 days

PhysicalGeography.net

Earths Water Resources


1400 M km3 : Total Volume of water 96.5 %: saline water of oceans 2 %: glaciers and polar ice-caps 0.02 %: rivers and streams

~1-1.5 %: GROUNDWATER 7-60 M km3 Estimates difficult due to permafrost, seasonal ice & impermeable rocks Surface/fresh water excluding ice

(C) Copyright, 1996 by Purdue Research Foundation, West Lafayette, Indiana 47909, All Right Reserved. This material may be reproduced and distributed in its entirely for non-profit, educational use, provided appropriate copyright notice is acknowledged.

Groundwater in rocks and soils


Water exists in the ground within the saturated and unsaturated zone Unsaturated zone: pores/voids partially filled Saturated zone: pores/voids completely filled

(C) Copyright, 1996 by Purdue Research Foundation, West Lafayette, Indiana 47909, All Right Reserved. This material may be reproduced and distributed in its entirely for non-profit, educational use, provided appropriate copyright notice is acknowledged.

Groundwater in rocks and soils


Unsaturated zone: water held as a film around grains, water at less than atmospheric pressure Capillary fringe: ~saturated water above the water table at pressure less than atmospheric due to surface tension and capillary phenomena Groundwater recharged by downward flow of water due to gravity Saturated zone: below the water table groundwater at a pressure above atmospheric

Saturated Unsaturated Zone Zone

Groundwater

Groundwater in rocks and soils


How/why does water flow in the ground?

Differences in water table heights (elevation and pressure) Water works to equalize the difference by flowing Therefore flow occurs from high head to low head Flow cells Recharge
zone

Groundwater circulatory systems

Discharge zone

Recharge during Winter Discharge at rivers

permeable impermeable

Perched water tables


Water table within low permeability lenses Above regional water table

(C) Copyright, 1996 by Purdue Research Foundation, West Lafayette, Indiana 47909, All Right Reserved. This material may be reproduced and distributed in its entirely for non-profit, educational use, provided appropriate copyright notice is acknowledged.

Groundwater Properties
At what depth is groundwater reached?
Water table at 2-3 m BGL
20-200 m deep, Qanats

Northumberlandtoday.com

Alluvial fan, Iran


Wikipedia

Groundwater Properties
Term groundwater either refers to 1) water in rocks 2) the exploitable commodity Is not evenly distributed throughout the Earths crust;
some lithologies concentrate groundwater and permit flow easily through it others hold groundwater and only permit very slow flow rates and small volumes

Some areas do not get sufficient recharge


Water not available to enter subsurface, high rates of evapotranspiration (Evp)

Large areas of the UK where groundwater exists but can not be exploited as a resource
Mainly due to properties of the lithologies in which the water exists

Groundwater Properties
Porosity:
Measure of pore space How porous the rocks are; = 100 (= Volume of void space/total rock volume)

Permeability (=hydraulic conductivity):


A measure of the ease with which water can flow through a rock Permeable materials permit water to flow through them (impermeable contrary) A function of connectivity and grain size of geological material High porosity does not mean high permeability, an example: Cretaceous Chalk

Groundwater Properties
Permeability: Flow takes place by:
Intergranular flow diffuse flow, between grains in sands and gravels, poorly cemented sandstones and young porous limestones Fracture flow through joints, bedding etc; erratic flow in faults; dense joint sets provide diffuse flow in chalks

Secondary flow - groundwater flow increasing permeability by dissolution, notably in limestones, karst systems,
Limestones at Castleton, Derbyshire Inchnadamph

Groundwater as a resource
Like many natural resources, if groundwater is to be exploited as a resource; It must exist in economically viable quantities This situation is met where:
1. Layers of rock are sufficiently porous to store water 2. Permeable enough to allow flow through

These conditions exist: Aquifer Unconfined aquifer: upper surface water table Confined aquifer: low permeability confining layer overlying aquifer

Types of Aquifers
Groundwater must be abstracted Groundwater flows as by pumping under pressure

Unconfined Aquifer

Confined Aquifer
(C) Copyright, 1996 by Purdue Research Foundation, West Lafayette, Indiana 47909, All Right Reserved. This material may be reproduced and distributed in its entirely for non-profit, educational use, provided appropriate copyright notice is acknowledged.

Aquifer Properties
One of the most important and easiest properties: Hydraulic Conductivity, k, m/s:
A measure of how much water can naturally flow Is dependent on the hydraulic gradient, :

=
Slope of the water table

Typical for an aquifer = 1:100

Aquifer Properties
Hydraulic Conductivity, k
Flow rate, Q Area of the aquifer: B = aquifer thickness, m w = aquifer width, m

Darcys apparatus to experimentally verify his concept in Dijon, 1803 = Darcys Law is used to describe the flow through an aquifer For a given material, K, remains constant; proportionality constant

Other Aquifer Properties


Specific yield - % volume of water that can drain freely from a rock; indicates the groundwater resource value of an aquifer (some water not extractable) Storage Coefficient/Storativity volume of water released from an aquifer for each unit change of water table height Transmissivity, T hydraulic conductivity of a vertical section of aquifer, hence: =
How readily water can move through aquifer to wells

Typical Aquifer Values


Material Granite Shale Clay Fractured sandstone Sand Gravel Cavernous limestone Chalk Fracture zone (e.g. fault) K< 0.01 m/day impermeable Permeability K (m/day) 0.0001 0.0001 0.0002 5 20 300 erratic 20 50 Porosity % Specific yield % 1 3 50 15 30 25 5 20 10 0.5 1 3 8 28 22 4 4

K>1 m/day exploitable aquifer

Field Measurement of Aquifer Properties


Regional Aquifer Properties
Cone of depression forms in piezometric surface during abstraction Shape: pumping rate, transmissivity and storativity of aquifer Pump water out at a steady rate while monitoring the fall in water table in at least 2 monitoring wells Draw down proportional to pump rate

Field Measurement of Aquifer Properties


Local Aquifer Properties
Packer test used to determine individual contributions to overall aquifer transmissivity of particular layers or fissures Can be either constant head or falling head

UK Aquifers
Most important UK aquifers occur in Younger Cover Permo-Triassic Sandstones Penrith Sandstone Dune sands Intergranular flow Porosity 20-35 % K = 1-10 m/day Cretaceous Chalks Shell fragments Porosity 40 % Specific yield = ~1 % T = 1000 m2/day Cracks and fissures Bedding flow

UK Groundwater Forum

Annual abstraction: 2400M m3/day 85% from two aquifers

UK Aquifers
Example of a hydrogeological map Relief & Annual Rainfall data

Hydrogeological Map:
Piezometric contours Surface water courses Rainfall catchments

Hydrochemistry & abstraction licenses


Stratigraphic column with hydrogeological properties Hydrograph data

(BGS)

Geological cross sections

Piezometric contours

Rivers, streams & Sea

UK Aquifers
Drift material

Contours of base Otter Sandstone aquifer

Rainfall catchments

Flow direction Permian Breccias

1 km
Example of a hydrogeological map: close up
BGS

Hydrogeological model
More than one groundwater flow path exists

Groundwater Resources
Abstraction Well Design
Example abstraction well connected to three aquifers Borehole supported by steel casing Grout between casing and rock for sanitary reasons Perforated screen used for loose sands prevents up flow of sediment Gravel filter pack for fine sands Unlined for rocks as support not needed

Resource Considerations
Aquifer abstraction stability is only assured if the rate of abstraction < recharge. If abstraction > recharge = groundwater mining (e.g. Great Man-made River) Groundwater quality is ensured by:
aquifer filtration while flowing underground residence time in contact with absorptive clays and cleansing bacteria in soils

Tapping an aquifer
Eighth wonder of the world Colonel Gaddafi Worlds largest water irrigation project Supply 70 % of overall water demand 6,500,000 m3 per day

Abstract groundwater from Nubian Sandstone Aquifer in Sahara Fossil aquifer; no recharge Potential water reserves: 150,000 km3 Transport to cities of Tripoli, Benghazi & Sirte

Tapping an aquifer
Eighths wonder of the world Colonel Gaddafi Worlds largest water irrigation project Supply 70 % of overall water demand 6,500,000 m3 per day

Abstract groundwater from Nubian Sandstone Aquifer in Sahara Fossil aquifer; no recharge Potential water reserves: 150,000 km3 Transport to cities of Tripoli, Benghazi & Sirte
1300 abstraction wells down to 500 m 2820 km of pipes and aquaducts Several huge reservoirs

Groundwater & Engineering Works


Any construction project working in the saturated zone will be affected by groundwater Groundwater exclusion techniques:

Diaphragm Walling Sheet Piling


Prweb.com Menardbachy.au

Groundwater & Engineering Works


Any construction project working in the saturated zone will be affected by groundwater Groundwater exclusion techniques:
Grouting

Bachysoletanche .com

Groundwater & Engineering Works


Any construction project working in the saturated zone will be affected by groundwater Dewatering techniques:
Pumping to lower water table Also used in deep mining

Moorcroft Quarry, Plymouth

Price 2002

Groundwater & Engineering Works


Any construction project working in the saturated zone will be affected by groundwater Drainage:
Remove water that enters works Remove water before it can be an issue

Groundwater & Engineering Works


Any construction project working in the saturated zone will be affected by groundwater Drainage:
Reduces strength of foundations Remove and prevent water from flowing
Pump water out via gallery and borehole

Grout curtain

Groundwater Contamination
EU Water Framework Directive Europes Water protection policy
In terms of groundwater: 1. Prevent input of pollutants 2. Recharge-discharge balance 3. Reverse current pollutant concentration trends 4. Do all the above within 15 years

Groundwater Contamination
Common contaminants: 1. Petroleum products 2. Fertilizers 3. Pesticides 4. Human waste (sewerage) 5. Nitrates Contaminant sources: 1. Storage tanks (point source) 2. Septic systems 3. Fly-tipping of waste 4. Contaminated water courses 5. Landfills 6. Roads and railways (line source) 7. Salt water intrusion 8. Farming (diffuse source)

Contaminant Transport

Diffusion & dispersion

Advection; with groundwater

Contaminant Transport Common contaminants: 1. Petroleum products Herbicides, pesticides and fungicides used to kill 2. Pesticides weeds & insects 3. Human waste (sewerage) Soluble and susceptible to leaching; easily reach GW 4. Nitrates Restrictions in use near public supply wells Contaminant sources: Diffusion & dispersion 1. Storage tanks (point source) 2. Septic systems 3. Fly-tipping of waste 4. Contaminated water courses 5. Landfills 6. Roads and railways (line Advection; with source) groundwater 7. Salt water intrusion 8. Atmospheric contaminants

Groundwater Contamination

Contaminant Transport Common contaminants: 1. Petroleum products 2. Pesticides 3. Human waste (sewerage) 4. Fertilisers: Nitrates Contaminant sources: High concentrations detrimental to health (infants) 1. Storage source) tanks Risk of(point groundwater contamination managed Diffusion & dispersion Designated Nitrate Vulnerable Zones 2. Septic systems Farmers encouraged to adapt farming practices 3. Fly-tipping of waste 4. Contaminated water courses 5. Landfills 6. Roads and railways (line Advection; with source) groundwater 7. Salt water intrusion 8. Atmospheric contaminants

Groundwater Contamination

Summary
Groundwater as a resource Types of aquifers Groundwater movement & field measurement Aquifer well design & aquifer exploitation example Hydrogeology and engineering projects Groundwater contamination