Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Geological and Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Alan E. Kehew

Second Advisor

Dr. Thomas Straw

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The objective of this study was to examine the possibility of determining groundwater flow directions from natural variations in groundwater chemistry. Groundwater samples were analyzed for major cation and anion concentrations. These data were to have been contoured and then compared with groundwater flow maps generated by conventional methods. The purpose was to determine whether a correlation could be drawn between the two methods. However, the results of the study did not allow for this comparison.

The plotted major cation and anion data did not lend themselves to contouring, which suggests that greater control may be required during the selection of the sampling locations, or that other factors may influence groundwater quality. The wells selected for sample collection in this study may not have all been screened in the same aquifer, and the average linear velocity of groundwater flow and the groundwater flow paths (which would govern residence time), and the soil chemistry (which would govern groundwater equilibrium chemistry), could differ between the aquifers of the study area. Recommendations are provided for future investigators should a study of this focus be undertaken again.

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