Investigation of artificial recharge of aquifers in Nebraska

Water-Resources Investigations Report 80-93
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Progressive declines of ground-water levels in some areas of Nebraska prompted this investigation into the technical feasibility of recharging aquifers through wells, impoundments, pits, and canals. Information gained from a literature search and from preliminary tests was used to design several artificial-recharge experiments in Nebraska from 1977 to 1979. In well experiments, 0.46 billion gallons of water from an aquifer recharged by the Platte River was transported by pipeline and injected through a well into a sand and gravel aquifer near Aurora. Recharge was at about 730 gallons per minute during tests of 6- and 8-months duration. No evidence of clogging of the aquifer due to chemical reactions, air entrainment, or bacteria was detected in either test. In the 6-month test, evidence of clogging due to fine sediment in the recharge water was detected; however, analysis of this test indicated that recharge could have continued for several years before rehabilitation would have become necessary. Results of the 8-month test confirmed results of the earlier test until casing failure in the supply well and subsequent sediment deposition in the recharge well caused rapid water-level rise in the recharge well. In surface-spreading experiments, maximum infiltration rates from 24-foot-diameter ring infiltrometers near Aurora and Tryon were 0.4 and 11 feet per day, respectively. Results indicate that large-scale surface spreading is feasible only where low-permeability layers are absent in the subsurface. Infiltration rates from reuse pits ranged from 0.01 to 1.6 feet per day, indicating highly variable subsurface permeability. Flow measurements in an irrigation canal near Farwell indicate an infiltration rate of 0.37 feet per day. (USGS)
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Investigation of artificial recharge of aquifers in Nebraska
Series title Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number 80-93
DOI 10.3133/wri8093
Edition -
Year Published 1980
Language ENGLISH
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey, Water Resources Division,
Description viii, 112 p. :ill., maps ;26 cm.
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