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27.02.2018 | Report | Ausgabe 6/2018

Hydrogeology Journal 6/2018

Hydrogeologic and hydraulic characterization of aquifer and nonaquifer layers in a lateritic terrain (West Bengal, India)

Zeitschrift:
Hydrogeology Journal > Ausgabe 6/2018
Autoren:
Sabinaya Biswal, Madan K. Jha, Shashi P. Sharma

Abstract

The hydrogeologic and hydraulic characteristics of a lateritic terrain in West Bengal, India, were investigated. Test drilling was conducted at ten sites and grain-size distribution curves (GSDCs) were prepared for 275 geologic samples. Performance evaluation of eight grain-size-analysis (GSA) methods was carried out to estimate the hydraulic conductivity (K) of subsurface formations. Finally, the GSA results were validated against pumping-test data. The GSDCs indicated that shallow aquifer layers are coarser than the deeper aquifer layers (uniformity coefficient 0.19–11.4). Stratigraphy analysis revealed that both shallow and deep aquifers of varying thickness exist at depths 9–40 and 40–79 m, respectively. The mean K estimates by the GSA methods are 3.62–292.86 m/day for shallow aquifer layers and 0.97–209.93 m/day for the deeper aquifer layers, suggesting significant aquifer heterogeneity. Pumping-test data indicated that the deeper aquifers are leaky confined with transmissivity 122.69–693.79 m2/day, storage coefficient 1.01 × 10−7–2.13 × 10−4 and leakance 2.01 × 10−7–34.56 × 10−2 day−1. Although the K values yielded by the GSA methods are generally larger than those obtained from the pumping tests, the Slichter, Harleman and US Bureau Reclamation (USBR) GSA methods yielded reasonable values at most of the sites (1–3 times higher than K estimates by the pumping-test method). In conclusion, more reliable aquifers exist at deeper depths that can be tapped for dependable water supply. GSA methods such as Slichter, Harleman and USBR can be used for the preliminary assessment of K in lateritic terrains in the absence of reliable field methods.

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