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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
doi:10.5194/hessd-12-12567-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
04 Dec 2015
Review status
This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS). The revised manuscript was not accepted.
Sequential hydraulic tests for transient and highly permeable unconfined aquifer systems – model development and field-scale implementation
C.-F. Ni1, Y.-J. Huang1, J.-J. Dong1, and T.-C. J. Yeh2 1Graduate Institute of Applied Geology, National Central University, Taoyuan City, Taiwan
2Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, The University of Arizona, Tucson, USA
Abstract. The transient hydraulic tomography survey (THTS) is a conceptually improved technique that efficiently estimates detailed variations in aquifer parameters. Based on the concept of the THTS, we developed a geostatistical inverse model to characterize saturated hydraulic conductivity (K) and the specific yield (Sy) in transient and unconfined aquifer systems. In this study, a synthetic example was first used to assess the accuracy of the developed inverse model. Multiple random K and Sy realizations with different variances of natural logarithm of K (lnK) were generated and systematically compared to evaluate the effects of joint inversion on K estimations. The model was implemented in field-scale, cross-hole injection tests in a shallow and highly permeable unconfined aquifer near the middle reaches of the Wu River in central Taiwan. To assess the effect of constant head boundary conditions on the estimation results, two additional modeling domains were evaluated on the basis of the same field data from the injection tests. The results of the synthetic example showed that the proposed inverse model can effectively reproduce the predefined K patterns and magnitudes. However, slightly less detail was obtained for the Sy field based on the sampling data from sequential transient hydraulic stresses. The joint inversion by using transient head observations could slightly decrease the accuracy of K estimations. The model implementation for field-scale injection tests showed that the model can estimate K and Sy fields with detailed spatial variations. Estimation results showed a relatively homogeneous aquifer for the tested well field. Results based on the three modeling domains showed similar patterns and magnitudes of K and Sy near the well locations. These results indicated that the THTS is relatively insensitive to artificially drawn boundary conditions even under transient conditions.

Citation: Ni, C.-F., Huang, Y.-J., Dong, J.-J., and Yeh, T.-C. J.: Sequential hydraulic tests for transient and highly permeable unconfined aquifer systems – model development and field-scale implementation, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., 12, 12567-12613, doi:10.5194/hessd-12-12567-2015, 2015.
C.-F. Ni et al.
C.-F. Ni et al.

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Short summary
This study focuses on developing an inverse model for transient and unconfined aquifer systems and conducting field-scale injection tests to implement the developed model. The systematical analyses showed that the proposed inverse model can effectively reproduce the predefined parameter patterns and magnitudes. We had implemented the model to our research well field and results showed that the model can estimate aquifer parameters with detailed spatial variations.
This study focuses on developing an inverse model for transient and unconfined aquifer systems...
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