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Geostatistical analysis of effective vertical hydraulic conductivity and presence of confining layers in the Shallow Glacial Drift Aquifer, Oakland County, Michigan

Scientific Investigations Report 2004-5167

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Abstract

About 400,000 residents of Oakland County, Mich., rely on ground water for their primary drinking-water supply. More than 90 percent of these residents draw ground water from the shallow glacial drift aquifer. Understanding the vertical hydraulic conductivity of the shallow glacial drift aquifer is important both in identifying areas of ground-water recharge and in evaluating susceptibility to contamination. The geologic environment throughout much of the county, however, is poorly understood and heterogeneous, making conventional aquifer mapping techniques difficult. Geostatistical procedures are therefore used to describe the effective vertical hydraulic conductivity of the top 50 ft of the glacial deposits and to predict the probability of finding a potentially protective confining layer at a given location. The results presented synthesize the available well-log data; however, only about 40 percent of the explainable variation in the dataset is accounted for, making the results more qualitative than quantitative. Most of the variation in the effective vertical hydraulic conductivity cannot be explained with the well-log data currently available (as of 2004). Although the geologic environment is heterogeneous, the quality-assurance process indicated that more than half of the wells in the countys Wellkey database (statewide database for monitoring drinking-water wells) had inconsistent identifications of lithology.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Geostatistical analysis of effective vertical hydraulic conductivity and presence of confining layers in the Shallow Glacial Drift Aquifer, Oakland County, Michigan
Series title:
Scientific Investigations Report
Series number:
2004-5167
Edition:
-
Year Published:
2004
Language:
ENGLISH
Description:
24 p.