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Groundwater All the subsurface water trapped in the pores and other open spaces in rocks, sediments and soils; .75% of total water available for use and 30.1% of fresh water resources; movement averages a few meters per day, slower than streams; used for irrigation
Pores Groundwater is stored in open spaces in rocks
Porosity The percentage of a material's total volume that is open space (%)
Permeability The capacity to transmit fluids; open spaces must be connected for fluid to move. This is necessary if we are to produce water from rocks; Dependent on porosity, but also on the size of the pores and their interconnections
High Permeability Higher flow rates; small grains usually produce low permeability; Conduits produce high permeability; Large grains without clay and silt matrix tend to have excellent permeability
Aquifer A permeable underground rock layer saturated with slowly moving groundwater.
Sandstones The best aquifers are well-sorted, loosely & cemented, capillary pressure helps to hold the water
Aquiclude A non-permeable layer that prevents the flow of water. Ex: clay or shale layers
Confined aquifer An aquifer with an aquiclude above and below
Phreatice Zone (Zone of Saturation) The region of groundwater where all pore spaces are filled with fluids
Vadose Zone (Zone or Aeration) The region of groundwater where most pore spaces are filled with vapor (unsaturated zone)
Suspended Water Water that is in the vadose zone as a result of adhesion to grain boundaries and capillary pressure
Water Table A planar surface which occurs at the top of the phreatic zone, level fluctuates with precipitation, infiltration, etc.
Water Table Dynamics In areas with adequate precipitation, the water table surface will mimic land surface, rising under hills, and flowing down to streams or areas of lower pressure
Gaining Streams Have water flowing to the stream from the ground; these stay around despite recent precipitation
Losing Streams Have water leaving the channel and infiltrating the ground; these only run for a few hours after precipitation event
Natural Springs Where flowing water exits the ground; occurring at locations where the landscape intersects the water table; water can be flowing along beds of rock or through faults and fractures in the rock
Artesian Aquifers Confined aquifers that have constant pressure and recharge; only need a well to get water
Elevation of the Water Table In the recharge area and the distance from this area will determine the pressure = how high the water will rise
Water Wells Wells that penetrate into the water table in an aquifer and either flow naturally or/and pumped to bring water to the surface
Cone of Depression When pumping water from an aquifer at a rate higher than the groundwater is flowing back into the aquifer; then the water will flow towards the well forming this
Recharge Zone Where surface water infiltrates the ground and replenishes the aquifer; surface water recharge is from rainfall, melting snow & losing streams; can take 1000's of years to replenish some aquifers
Karst Topography Denotes a landscape that is dominated by soluble rock (limestones, dolomites, gypsum) and dissolution features in humid environments
Sinkholes Either dissolution or collapse
Solution Valleys Coalescing sinkholes
Natural Bridges Remaining land between sinkholes
Disappearing Streams Underground conduits for water
Tower Karst Extensive dissolution
Caves and Caverns Underground features associated with groundwater; these form when acid water dissolves limestone below the surface slowly creating voids in the rock; gradually grow larger and larger forming themselves
Speleothems These are features in caves; such as stalactites, stalagmites, columns and drapery formations
Cave Any natural opening in the subsurface that forms a cavity large enough for human entry; Texas definition: void must at least be 5 meters in traverse length & have no dimension of entrance that exceeds length or depth
Cavern Very large cave or system of interconnected caves passages
Grotto Small cave or an individual room within a cavern
Krubera Cavern Deepest cave in the world; water percolates through deep faults and fractures formed by orgenic stresses, these are accentuated through dissolution of limestone
Cave of Crystals Cavern found in a lead, zinc, & silver mine; Giant gypsum crystals that are growing in a fluid filled cavity; a giant geode
Caves in Quartzite Caves formed over millions of years form by fracturing & dissolution of quartz; Ridges rise up from the valley floors, covered in vegetation; requires help of organic acids; speleothems formed from opal
Quicksand Sand or other unconsolidated sediment that is super saturdated with water, such that grains are buoyantly held away from one another;
Quicksand Occurs at: Groundwater discharge zones Upward flow of groundwater Springs, streamboats, coasts **High density but highly visocous
Tufa Surface carbonate speleothem formed by the precipitation of mineral entering atmospheric conditions, result of: Degassing, Change in temp, Interaction w/ biota; Similar to: Silica Dioxide & Calcium sulfate
Hydrothermal fluids Groundwater that is heated above the average annual mean temperature, as a result of: Volcanism, radioactive decay, Deep-circulation (geothermal gradient)
Hot Springs AKA Thermal & warm springs; Thermal waters are brought to the surface and discharged, usually as artesian waters; mudpots can form when thermal water alters bedrock to produce hydrated clays that "bubble"
Geysers Hot springs that eject water & steam; constricted permeability (conduits) enable pressure to build up within system; as pressure increases, gases spontaneously expand to forcefully eject water and steam
Water Quality Extraction can result in a decrease in water quality as a result of increased leakage from surrounding area
Subsidence Lowering of the regional land surface due to grain compaction as a result of the loss of buoyant support as a result groundwater extraction
Collapse Local lowering of the land surface, often catastrophically, as a result of the loss of buoyant support as a result of groundwater extraction
Groundwater Contamination Sources of potential anthropogenic groundwater contamination abound; Ex: Septic tanks, landfills, waste injection wells, Toxic chemical disposal, cemetaries, etc.
Groundwater Quality General related to 4 things: Composition of aquifer rock Solubility of aquifer rock Residence time of aquifer fluid External contaminents
Hard water Water that has a high dissolved solute load, which is often associated with scale deposition
Severe health problems Can develop from high levels of natural minerals such as arsenic (slow poison that can cause cancer)
Created by: FaithRaquel2015