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A digital simulation of the glacial-aquifer system in Sanborn and parts of Beadle, Miner, Hanson, Davison, and Jerauld counties, South Dakota

Water-Resources Investigations Report 87-4082

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Abstract

The drought in South Dakota from 1974-76 and the near drought conditions in 1980-81 have resulted in increased demands on the groundwater resources within many of the irrigated areas of the James River basin in eastern South Dakota. These increases in demand for irrigation water from the glacial aquifer system, and continued requests to the State for additional irrigation well permits, have created a need for a systematic water management program to avoid over-development of this system in the James River basin. An equally spaced grid containing 56 rows and 52 columns used to simulate the glacial aquifer system, was calibrated using water level data collected before significant groundwater development (before 1973). The aquifer was also simulated in 11 annual transient stress periods from 1973 through 1983 and in 12 monthly transient stress periods for 1976. The simulated pre-development potentiometric heads were compared to average water levels from 32 observation wells to check the accuracy of the simulate potentiometric surface. The average arithmetic difference between the simulated and observed water levels was 1.68 ft and the average absolute difference was 4.38 ft. The non-pumping steady-state simulated water budget indicates that recharge from precipitation accounts for 97.1% of the water entering the aquifer and evapotranspiration accounts for 98.2% of the water leaving the aquifer. The sensitivity analysis of the steady-state model indicates that the model is most sensitive to reductions in recharge and least to changes in hydraulic conductivity. The maximum annual recharge varied from 0.10 inch in 1976 to 8.14 inches in 1977. The potential annual evapotranspiration varied from 29.9 inches in 1982 to 48.9 inches in 1976. Withdrawals from the glacial aquifer system increased 2.6 times between 1975 and 1976. The average annual arithmetic difference between the simulated and observed water levels ranged from 3.88 ft in 1974 to 2.23 ft in 1982; the average absolute difference ranged from 4.70 ft in 1973 to 11.70 ft in 1982. In the 1976 monthly transient simulation, the maximum annual recharge rate 0.10 inch was distributed over the months of March, April, and September. The potential monthly evapotranspiration rate ranged from 12.50 inches in August to 0.00 inch during the winter when the ground was frozen. (Author 's abstract)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
A digital simulation of the glacial-aquifer system in Sanborn and parts of Beadle, Miner, Hanson, Davison, and Jerauld counties, South Dakota
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
87-4082
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1988
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
v, 59 p. :ill., maps ;28 cm.