The hydrogeochemistry of recharge processes and implications for water management in the southwestern United States
Artificial groundwater recharge -- Arizona -- Tucson Region.
Geochemistry -- Arizona -- Tucson Region.
Groundwater -- Quality -- Arizona -- Tucson Region.
Committee ChairFogel, Martin M.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractA geochemical approach to the evaluation of the chemistry of natural recharge processes in the Tucson basin was used to identify the major minerals controlling the evolution of ground water chemistry and to assess the viability of recharging imported Central Arizona Project water supplies. Well cuttings analyses and water quality samples from over 65 wells in the basin were used as input to the geochemical computer model PATH4 (Helgeson, 1970) and the sequence of aqueous species and mineral production in a recharge reference volume examined. The study reveals that natural processes in the basin lead to the increase in dissolved solids content in ground water over time and the production of secondary minerals such as calcite, calcium montmorillonite, kaolinite and poorly crystallized alumino-silicate phases. Secondary minerals grow into aquifer pore spaces and may, over time, be responsible for the reduction in aquifer porosity and the specific capacity of wells. The recharge of imported Central Arizona Project water will lead to an increase in the dissolved solids content of ground water and may, in certain areas of the basin, lead to the enhanced production of secondary minerals. The use of CAP water as a recharge source must be guided by the geochemical factors which influence the nature and scope of reactions between CAP water and the Tucson aquifer matrix. The study demonstrates the need for and identifies water quality and aquifer matrix criteria for the assessment of sources of recharge water and recharge facility sites. The use of geochemistry as a tool for quantitatively assessing ground water quality is demonstrated.
Degree NamePh. D.
Degree ProgramRenewable Natural Resources