• Analysis of Borehole Infiltration Tests Above the Water Table

      Stephens, Daniel Bruce; Neuman, Shlomo P. (Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1980-03)
      Constant head borehole infiltration tests are widely used for the in situ evaluation of saturated hydraulic conductivities of unsaturated soils above the water table. The formulae employed in analyzing the results of such tests disregard the fact that some of the infiltrating water may flow under unsaturated conditions. Instead, these formulae are based on various approximations of the classical free surface theory which treats the flow region as if it were fully saturated and enclosed within a distinct envelope, the so- called "free surface." A finite element model capable of solving free surface problems is used to examine the mathematical accuracy of the borehole infiltration formulae. The results show that in the hypothetical case where unsaturated flow does not exist, the approximate formulae are reasonably accurate within a practical range of borehole conditions. To see what happens under conditions closer to those actually encountered in the field, the effect of unsaturated flow on borehole infiltration is investigated by means of two different numerical models: A mixed explicit - implicit finite element model, and a mixed explicit -implicit integrated finite difference model. Both of these models give nearly identical results; however, the integrated finite difference model is considerably faster than the finite element model. The relatively low computational efficiency of the finite element scheme is attributed to the large humber of operations required in order to reevaluate the conductivity (stiffness) matrix at each iteration in this highly nonlinear saturated -unsaturated flow problem. The saturated -unsaturated analysis demonstrates that the classical free surface approach provides a distorted picture of the flow pattern in the soil. Contrary to what one would expect on the basis of this theory, only a finite region of the soil in the immediate vicinity of the borehole is saturated, whereas a significant percentage of the flow takes place under unsaturated conditions. As a consequence of disregarding unsaturated flow, the available formulae may underestimate the saturated hydraulic conductivity of fine grained soils by a factor of two, three, or more. Our saturated -unsaturated analysis leads to an improved design of borehole infiltration tests and a more accurate method for interpreting the results of such tests. The analysis also shows how one can predict the steady state rate of infiltration as well as the saturated hydraulic conductivity from data collected during the early transient period of the test.
    • Aquifer Modeling by Numerical Methods Applied to an Arizona Groundwater Basin

      Fogg, Graham E.; Simpson, Eugene S.; Neuman, Shlomo P. (Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1979-06)
      FLUMP, a recently developed mixed explicit -implicit finite -element program, was calibrated against a data base obtained from a portion of the Tucson Basin aquifer, Arizona, and represents its first application to a real -world problem. Two previous models for the same region were constructed (an electric analog and a finite -difference model) in which calibration was based on prescribed flux boundary conditions along stream courses and mountain fronts. These fluxes are not directly measured and estimates are subject to large uncertainties. In contrast, boundary conditions used in the calibration of FLUMP were prescribed hydraulic heads obtained from direct measurement. At prescribed head boundaries FLUMP computed time - varying fluxes representing subsurface lateral flow and recharge along streams. FLUMP correctly calculated fluctuations in recharge along the Santa Cruz River due to fluctuations in storm runoff and sewage effluent release rates. FLUMP also provided valuable insight into distributions of recharge, discharge, and subsurface flow in the study area.Properties of FLUMP were compared with those of two other programs in current use: ISOQUAD, a finite -element program developed by Pinder and Frind (1972), and a finite- difference program developed by the U.S. Geological Survey (Trescott, et al., 1976). It appears that FLUMP can handle a larger class of problems than the other two programs, including those in which the boundary conditions and aquifer parameters vary arbitrarily with time and /or head. FLUMP also has the ability to solve explicitly when accuracy requires small time steps, the ability to solve explicitely in certain parts of the flow region while solving implicitly in other parts, flexibility in mesh design and numbering of nodes, computation of internal as well as external fluxes, and global as well as local mass balance checks at each time step.
    • Effect Of Filtering On Autocorrelation, Flow, And Transport In Random Fractal Fields

      Federico, Vittorio Di; Neuman, Shlomo P.; Department of Hydrology & Water Resources, The University of Arizona (Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1995-12)
      " Fractal" concepts have become the focus of much interest in the earth sciences during the last fifteen years. The term "fractal" is especially appealing from a semantic point of view in that Mandelbrot [ 1983] derived it from the Latin "fractus ", describing the appearance of a broken stone. In this report, we focus on issues of flow and contaminant transport in porous media. Here, fractal concepts have been widely associated with attempts to explain scale- effects such as the apparent growth of effective longitudinal dispersion with the scale of observation. However, a much broader range of topics has been explored in the literature on fractals, which can be roughly divided into two broad categories. The first category concerns a fractal description of medium geometry, over a given range of scales [Adler, 1992]. Within this category, the fractal geometry is considered to be either deterministic (self -similar) or random (statistically self -similar, or self -affine) [Voss 1985]. The second category views medium physical properties (porosity, log- conductivity) as random fields, most commonly with statistical self -similarity of second -order moments such as structure function ( variogram) or autocovariance. In this report, we focus on random fractal fields. We start with an introduction in Chapter 1 of isotropic random fractal fields and the scaling properties of corresponding power -law variogram and spectral densities in one, two, and three dimensions. We then derive new expressions for autocovariance functions corresponding to truncated power -law spectral densities; demonstrate that the power -law variogram and associated power spectra can be constructed as weighted integrals of exponential autocovariance functions and their spectra, representing an infinite hierarchy of unconelated homogeneous isotropic fields (modes); and analyze the effect of filtering out (truncating) high and low frequency modes from this hierarchy in the realand spectral domains. In Chapter 2, we derive first -order results relative to early preasymptotic, and late time asymptotic, transport in media characterized by a truncated log -conductivity power -law spectral density. In Chapter 3, we return to the multiscale log- conductivity fields constructed in Chapter 1; present some general results for early preasymptotic and late time asymptotic transport; and obtain complete first -order results for flow and transport, at preasymptotic and asymptotic stages, in two dimensions. In Chapter 4, we explore the multiscale behavior of conductivity from an aquifer in Mobile, Alabama, using different methods of data reduction. In Chapter 5, we summarize our main conclusions.
    • Nonlocal and localized finite element solution of conditional mean flow in randomly heterogeneous media

      Guadagnini, Alberto; Neuman, Shlomo P.; Department of Hydrology & Water Resources, The University of Arizona (Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1997-09)
      This report considers the effect of measuring randomly varying local hydraulic conductivities K(x) on one's ability to predict deterministically, without upscaling, steady state flow in bounded domains driven by random source and boundary terms. Our aim is to allow optimum unbiased prediction of hydraulic heads h(x) and Darcy fluxes q(x) by means of their ensemble moments, , and c, conditioned on measurements of K(x). It has been shown earlier that these predictors satisfy a deterministic flow equation which contains an integro-differential "residual flux" term. This term renders c nonlocal and non-Darcian so that the concept of effective hydraulic conductivity looses meaning in all but a few special cases. Instead, the residual flux contains kernels which constitute nonlocal parameters that are conditional on hydraulic conductivity data and therefore nonunique. The kernels include symmetric and nonsymmetric second -rank tensors as well as vectors. We derive exact integro-differential equations for second conditional moments of head and flux which constitute measures of predictive uncertainty. We then develop recursive closure approximations for the moment equations through expansion in powers of a small parameter ay which represents the standard estimation error of In K(x). Finally, we solve these nonlocal equations to first order in a by finite elements on a rectangular grid in two dimensions. We also solve the original stochastic flow equations by conditional Monte Carlo simulation using finite elements on the same grid. Upon comparing our nonlocal finite element and conditional Monte Carlo results we find that the former are highly accurate, under either mean uniform or convergent flows, for both mildly and strongly heterogeneous media with a as large as 4 - 5 and spatial correlation scales as large as the length of the domain. Since conditional mean quantities are smooth relative to their random counterparts our method allows, in principle, resolving them on relatively coarse grids without upscaling. We also examine the quc on under what conditions can the residual flux be localized so as to render it approximately Darcian. One way to achieve such localization is to treat ' "draulic conductivity as if it was locally homogeneous and mean flow as if it was locally uniform. This renders the flux predictor Darcian according to c _ - Kc(x) \7c where Kc(x) is a conditional hydraulic conductivity tensor which depends on measurements of K(x) and is therefore a nonunique function of space. This function can be estimated by means of either stochastically- derived analytical formulae or standard inverse methods (in which case localization coincides with common groundwater modeling practice). We use the first approach and solve the corresponding localized conditional mean equation by finite elements on the same grid as before. Here the conditional hydraulic conductivity is given by the geometric mean KG(x). Upon comparing our localized finite element solution with a nonlocal finite element solution and conditional Monte Carlo results, we find that the first is generally less accurate than the second. The accuracy of the localized solution deteriorates rel tive to that of the nonlocal solution as one approaches points of conditioning and singularity, or as the variance and correla': ^n scale of the log hydraulic conductivity increase. Contrary to the nonlocal solution, locàlzation does not yield information about predictive uncertainty.