Effects of aquifer anisotropy on the migration of infiltrated stream water to a pumping well

Xunhong Chen, Xi Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

Pumping of groundwater near a stream can induce infiltration of stream water into the surrounding aquifers. Analysis of the migration of the infiltrated stream water to the pumping well is important to better understand stream-aquifer interactions. The paper analyzes the effects of aquifer anisotropy on the migration process of infiltrated stream water to a partially penetrating well. MODFLOW is used to simulate the transient groundwater velocity fields, and MODPATH is used to record the locations of water particles. Pathlines were plotted over a cross section to show the hydraulic connectivity between the well and the stream for various levels of aquifer anisotropy. Travel times, infiltration rates, and fractions of pumped river water were determined to characterize the migration process. Generally, the movement of the infiltrated stream water is slow; the water can take several months to arrive at a well located a short distance from a stream. Results suggest that the rate of produced stream water at the well is higher for the anisotropy Kh/Kz= 10 and 20 (ratio of horizontal to vertical hydraulic conductivity) than for Kh/Kz< 10, or > 20. On the other hand, when Kh/Kz is between 20 and 100, the first water particle that gets to the pumping well needs a shorter travel time than that for other Kh/Kz values. A gaining stream can significantly reduce the rate of stream infiltration and produced stream water. Areal recharge provides an additional source to the well, thus reducing the rate of stream infiltration as well as the rate of produced stream water.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-293
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hydrologic Engineering
Volume8
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2003

Keywords

  • Aquifers
  • Pumps
  • Streams
  • Water infiltration
  • Wells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Environmental Science(all)

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