Modeling Stream-Aquifer Interactions During Floods and Baseflow: Upper San Pedro River, Southeastern Arizona
Committee ChairMeixner, Thomas
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractStreams and groundwaters interact in distinctly different ways during flood versus base flow periods. Recent research in the Upper San Pedro River using isotopic and chemical data shows that (1) near-stream, or 'riparian,' groundwater recharged during high streamflow periods is a major contributor to streamflow for the rest of the year, and (2) the amount of riparian groundwater derived from this flood recharge can vary widely (10-90%) along the river. Riparian groundwater in gaining reaches is almost entirely basin groundwater, whereas losing reaches are dominated by prior streamflow.This description of streamflow gives rise to the questions of (1) how much flood recharge occurs at the river-scale, and (2) subsequently, what is the relative importance of flood recharge and basin groundwater in maintaining the hydrologic state of the riparian system. To address these questions, a coupled hydrologic-solute model was constructed for 45 km of the Upper San Pedro riparian system.