Evaluation of ground-water quality data from Kentucky

Water-Resources Investigations Report 83-4240

, , and


  • The Publications Warehouse does not have links to digital versions of this publication at this time
  • Download citation as: RIS


The report reviews and summarizes 10,578 chemical analyses, from 2,362 wells and springs in Kentucky. These water-quality data were collected prior to September 30, 1981, and are available in computer files of the U.S. Geological Survey. The principal water-bearing rocks in Kentucky were combined into 10 major groups to aid in data summary preparation and general description of the ground-water quality of the State. Ground water in Kentucky is generally fresh near the outcrop of the rocks comprising the aquifer. Slightly saline to briny water occurs at variable depths beneath the freshwater. Preparation of quadrilinear diagrams revealed three principal geochemical processes in the aquifers of Kentucky: (1) mixing of freshwater and saline water in an interface zone; (2) dedolomitization of the Devonian and Silurian and Lower Mississippian carbonate rocks; (3) sodium for calcium exchange in the freshwater sections of many of the sandstone-shale aquifers. A number of errors and deficiencies were found in the data base. The principal deficiencies were: (1) very few complete analyses which included important field measurements; (2) inadequate definition of the chemistry of the freshwater-saline water interface zone throughout much of the State; (3) no analyses of stable isotopes and dissolved gases; (4) fewer than 10 analyses of most trace metals, radionuclides, and man-made organic chemicals; and (5) no data on bacteria in ground water from any aquifer in the State. (USGS)

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Evaluation of ground-water quality data from Kentucky
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
Year Published:
U.S. Geological Survey,
v, 65 p. :ill., maps (some col.) ;28 cm.