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Groundwater

Groundwater is water which is located beneath the Earth’s surface. This water resides in the soil pores and in the fractures of rock formations. A unit of rock which can yield a usable quantity of water is called an aquifer. The depth at which a soil pore fractures and becomes a void in the rock which is completely saturated with water is called the water table. Groundwater will recharge once used from the springs and wetlands. Groundwater is often used as our drinking water, for agricultural purposes and for industrial purposes. It is extracted from an aquifer through wells.

Groundwater was traditionally thought of as liquid water flowing through shallow aquifers. Although this is true, it can also include soil moisture, permafrost, immobile water in low permeability bedrock and deep geothermal water. Hypothetically, groundwater is thought of as the lubrication which allows the earth to move through faults.

Groundwater is being utilized all around the world. It is a renewable resource until it is over-used or as it’s called overdrafting. Putting groundwater into overdraft can have devastating effects. It can lower the water table and therefor cause the wells to have to be drilled deeper. Many ecosystems rely heavily on groundwater to provide a habitat.

Groundwater is also susceptible to pollutants. When pollutants are on the ground, they can make their way down to the groundwater. This can contaminate the aquifer and in some cases make it completely unusable. The interaction of groundwater contaminates with surface waters is studied using hydrology transport models. 

 

 

Title Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Isotope Chemistry of Groundwater

What is meant by the path of rainfall from the atmosphere to the saturated portion of an unconfined aquifer? Can you identify and explain the quantities you would need to measure or estimate in order to calculate potential recharge from rainfall data? How does the oxygen, carbon and hydrogen isotope chemistry of groundwaters

Spatial Distribution

The attachment shows two sets of histograms, showing nitrate and total organic carbon (TOC) concentrations in each groundwater block of the London Basin region. (a) I would like to know the spatial distribution of elevated nitrate levels in groundwater. What factors might explain this distribution? (b) What is the spatial di

Hydraulic Conductivity

A sample of drill core collected from an unconfined sandstone aquifer was tested using a constant head permeameter with a radius of 3cm at 20°C and provided the following data: Flow rate = 0.18 cm3/min Distance between manometers = 5 cm Difference in head between manometers = 2.8 cm A well in the same aquifer was pumped

Environmental Management

Compare and contrast the secondary water treatment methods to the tertiary water treatment It is a common practice, particularly in the Western United States, to treat wastewater to a very high level, and then inject it back into ground, where it can be used to replenish the groundwater table. Suppose that you are managing a

Differences between groundwater to streams and rivers separately

Hello. I cannot answer these two questions for my homework assignment. Here are the questions... 1. Compare the differences between groundwater to streams and rivers separately. 2. What are the major geological impacts running water and groundwater have on people?

Groundwater

Briefly describe each feature associated with groundwater: water table, aquifer, well, cave,karst topography, and geothermal energy. Describe the characteristics of each feature and how it is related to groundwater. I do not understand the process, so can you provide some insight? Thank you.

You are the environmental manager of the site and there has been a release of VOC's and metals onto the ground surface and have migrated into the subsurface sediments and groundwater.

You are the environmental manager of the site and there has been a release of VOC's and metals onto the ground surface and have migrated into the subsurface sediments and groundwater. The underlying aquifer is very close to the surface, only about 2 feet< and the groundwater generally flows toward the lake. From benchmarks, the

Leachate from landfills- example and health effects

I am trying to understand the effects of leachate from landfills and its effects on groundwater, and since I am in environmental health- its effects on the human health. Can anyone help explain these concepts to me? Also, does anyone know of any examples where leachate became a problem? Why is it important to study?

Hydogeology Fetters (discharge, water-table elevation)

11. An unconfined aquifer has a hydraulic conductivity of 8.7 x 10-2 cm/s. There are two observation wells 597 ft apart. Both penetrate the aquifer to the bottom. In one observation well the water stands 28.9 ft above the bottom, and in the other it is 26.2 ft above the bottom. (A)What is the discharge per 100-ft-wide strip of