A REVIEW OF THE SCALE PROBLEM AND APPLICATIONS OF STOCHASTIC METHODS TO DETERMINE GROUNDWATER TRAVEL TIME AND PATH

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/614214
Title:
A REVIEW OF THE SCALE PROBLEM AND APPLICATIONS OF STOCHASTIC METHODS TO DETERMINE GROUNDWATER TRAVEL TIME AND PATH
Author:
Yeh, T.-C. Jim; Stephens, Daniel B.
Affiliation:
Department of Hydrology & Water Resources, The University of Arizona
Publisher:
Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)
Issue Date:
1989
Rights:
Copyright © Arizona Board of Regents
Collection Information:
This title from the Hydrology & Water Resources Technical Reports collection is made available by the Department of Hydrology & Atmospheric Sciences and the University Libraries, University of Arizona. If you have questions about titles in this collection, please contact repository@u.library.arizona.edu.
Abstract:
The groundwater travel time along the fastest path of likely radionuclide transport is a regulatory criterion used to assess the hydrogeologic quality of a high - level radioactive waste repository. Hydrologists and engineers are limited in their ability to define with confidence the fastest path, owing to the heterogeneous nature of geologic materials. Field measurements of hydraulic properties such as in test or observation wells, are inherently averages of properties at scales smaller than the scale of the field measurement. As a result of averaging, subscale information is lost and there is uncertainty in defining the fastest trajectory of groundwater. This scale problem is explained through a review of the continuum and REV concepts in groundwater hydrology. The application of hydrodynamic dispersion concepts is recommended as a means of incorporating the effect of subscale heterogeneity on the fastest groundwater travel time. Sources of uncertainties in predicting groundwater travel time are discussed in the report. The uncertainties are mainly attributed to the heterogeneous nature of geologic formations. The heterogeneity of geologic materials can, however, be characterized quantitatively using geostatistical methods. Important statistical parameters include mean and variance. as well as the spatial correlation structures of the hydrologic properties within the hydrogeologic system. These parameters may he obtained from limited data base. Stochastic methods, reviewed and explained in this report, can take advantage of the geostatistical characterization to predict large -scale groundwater flow and solute transport. Several examples from recent scientific literature are provided to illustrate the application of stochastic methods to the groundwater travel time analysis. Stochastic methods in subsurface hydrology have only recently been evaluated under field conditions for a few locations, and validation of the theories is incomplete, especially in unsaturated fractured rocks. Nevertheless, research efforts should continue to improve the state -of -the art. Geostatistics and stochastic methods will be valuable tools in addressing the groundwater travel time objective
Keywords:
Groundwater; Radioactive wastes
Series/Report no.:
Technical Reports on Hydrology and Water Resources, No. 89-010
Sponsors:
The authors wish to extend thanks to Dr. Allan L. Gutjahr at New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology for his constructive comments and suggestions. Many thanks go to Mr. Guzman Amado for his hard working and Mr. Youkuan Zhang and the staff of Daniel B. Stephens and Associates, Inc. Finally, the authors would like to thank Ms. Deborah E. Greenholtz for editing of the manuscript and Ms. Corla Thies for drafting of figures.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorYeh, T.-C. Jimen
dc.contributor.authorStephens, Daniel B.en
dc.date.accessioned2016-06-22T20:10:24Z-
dc.date.available2016-06-22T20:10:24Z-
dc.date.issued1989-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10150/614214-
dc.description.abstractThe groundwater travel time along the fastest path of likely radionuclide transport is a regulatory criterion used to assess the hydrogeologic quality of a high - level radioactive waste repository. Hydrologists and engineers are limited in their ability to define with confidence the fastest path, owing to the heterogeneous nature of geologic materials. Field measurements of hydraulic properties such as in test or observation wells, are inherently averages of properties at scales smaller than the scale of the field measurement. As a result of averaging, subscale information is lost and there is uncertainty in defining the fastest trajectory of groundwater. This scale problem is explained through a review of the continuum and REV concepts in groundwater hydrology. The application of hydrodynamic dispersion concepts is recommended as a means of incorporating the effect of subscale heterogeneity on the fastest groundwater travel time. Sources of uncertainties in predicting groundwater travel time are discussed in the report. The uncertainties are mainly attributed to the heterogeneous nature of geologic formations. The heterogeneity of geologic materials can, however, be characterized quantitatively using geostatistical methods. Important statistical parameters include mean and variance. as well as the spatial correlation structures of the hydrologic properties within the hydrogeologic system. These parameters may he obtained from limited data base. Stochastic methods, reviewed and explained in this report, can take advantage of the geostatistical characterization to predict large -scale groundwater flow and solute transport. Several examples from recent scientific literature are provided to illustrate the application of stochastic methods to the groundwater travel time analysis. Stochastic methods in subsurface hydrology have only recently been evaluated under field conditions for a few locations, and validation of the theories is incomplete, especially in unsaturated fractured rocks. Nevertheless, research efforts should continue to improve the state -of -the art. Geostatistics and stochastic methods will be valuable tools in addressing the groundwater travel time objectiveen
dc.description.sponsorshipThe authors wish to extend thanks to Dr. Allan L. Gutjahr at New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology for his constructive comments and suggestions. Many thanks go to Mr. Guzman Amado for his hard working and Mr. Youkuan Zhang and the staff of Daniel B. Stephens and Associates, Inc. Finally, the authors would like to thank Ms. Deborah E. Greenholtz for editing of the manuscript and Ms. Corla Thies for drafting of figures.en
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.publisherDepartment of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)en
dc.relation.ispartofseriesTechnical Reports on Hydrology and Water Resources, No. 89-010en
dc.rightsCopyright © Arizona Board of Regentsen
dc.sourceProvided by the Department of Hydrology and Water Resources.en
dc.subjectGroundwateren
dc.subjectRadioactive wastesen
dc.titleA REVIEW OF THE SCALE PROBLEM AND APPLICATIONS OF STOCHASTIC METHODS TO DETERMINE GROUNDWATER TRAVEL TIME AND PATHen_US
dc.typetexten
dc.typeTechnical Reporten
dc.contributor.departmentDepartment of Hydrology & Water Resources, The University of Arizonaen
dc.description.collectioninformationThis title from the Hydrology & Water Resources Technical Reports collection is made available by the Department of Hydrology & Atmospheric Sciences and the University Libraries, University of Arizona. If you have questions about titles in this collection, please contact repository@u.library.arizona.edu.en
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