Characterising the vertical variations in hydraulic conductivity within the Chalk aquifer

Williams, A.; Bloomfield, J. ORCID:; Griffiths, K.; Butler, A.. 2006 Characterising the vertical variations in hydraulic conductivity within the Chalk aquifer. Journal of Hydrology, 330 (1-2). 53-62.

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Various field methods have been used to examine and quantify the vertical variations in aquifer properties within the Chalk aquifer at a LOCAR site in Berkshire, UK. The site contains three 100 m open boreholes and three sets of two nested piezometers within an area of about 100 m2. There is also an 86 m deep abstraction borehole about 40 m from the site. The techniques that have been used at the site include: geophysical logging, borehole imaging, packer testing, dilution testing and pumping tests. The packer test results show that the permeability of the aquifer varies by three orders of magnitude over the 70 m of tested material with a strongly non-linear decrease with depth below ground level. Comparison with the borehole images show that some of the highly permeable zones appear to be associated with obvious fractures. However, large fractures can be seen in zones which have much lower permeability while some highly permeable zones appear to be associated with poorly developed fractures. Single borehole dilution tests have shown that there are differences in flow velocity depth profiles over a few tens of meters across the site. These are inferred to be because the different boreholes, although of similar drilled depth and very close proximity, intersect slightly different parts of the fracture network and hence the groundwater flow system. In particular, a flowing feature at the base of one borehole is not intersected by the second, which is drilled from a slightly higher elevation. A dilution test carried out whilst the aquifer was being pumped shows that different fractures become active when the aquifer is stressed. This has implications for the interpretation of flow logs performed under pumping.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: BGS Programmes > Groundwater Management
ISSN: 0022-1694
Additional Keywords: Chalk, Chalk aquifers, Hydraulic conductivity, Tracer test, Berkshire, GroundwaterBGS, Groundwater, Aquifer characterisation
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Related URLs:
Date made live: 29 Apr 2008 14:58 +0 (UTC)

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