Articles | Volume 368
07 May 2015
 | 07 May 2015

Confined aquifer vulnerability induced by a pumping well in a leakage area

X. Meng, B. Deng, J. Shao, M. Yin, D. Liu, and Q. Hu

Keywords: Vulnerability, confined aquifer, leaky, solute transport

Abstract. Due to the pollution of shallow groundwater and the rapid development of society and economy which consume more freshwater, the exploitation of confined groundwater is steadily increasing in north China. Therefore, the rapid decline of the confined groundwater head increases the risk of confined aquifer pollution by leaky recharge from shallow aquifers. In this paper, a quantitative method for assessing confined aquifer vulnerability to contamination due to pumping has been developed. This method is based on the shallow and confined groundwater flow model and the advection and dispersion in the aquitard, including sorption. The cumulative time for the pollutant concentration at the top boundary of confined aquifer exceeding the maximum allowable level is defined as the confined aquifer vulnerability index, which can be obtained by numerically solving the solute transport equation. A hypothetical example is chosen as a case study to illustrate the whole process. The results indicate that the proposed method is a practical and reasonable assessment method of confined aquifer vulnerability.