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Unsaturated Hyporheic Zone Flow in Analytical Models for Stream/Aquifer Interaction

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  022212,  2002 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.9850) @2002
Authors:   Garey A. Fox, Deanna S. Durnford
Keywords:   Stream/Aquifer Interaction, Unsaturated Flow, Drawdown, Stream Depletion, Hyporheic Zone, Constant Head, Specified Flux

Pumping from groundwater resources that are hydraulically interactive with adjacent streams induces a water flux from the stream to the aquifer. Analytical models of stream/aquifer systems assume saturated flow within the region between the streambed and aquifer, or hyporheic zone. However, pumping next to a stream may cause the region between the bottom of the streambed and the aquifer to become unsaturated. When this perching occurs, the flux from the stream to the underlying aquifer approaches a constant limit. Unsaturated, hyporheic zone flow transforms streams from constant head boundaries to specific flux boundaries. This research presents an analytical solution for drawdown and stream depletion that accounts for unsaturated hyporheic zone flow. The saturated and unsaturated hyporheic zone flows are linearly superimposed in the analytical model to account for transient stream disconnection along the length of the stream. The effect of unsaturated hyporheic zone flow on the total flux from surface water to groundwater will be investigated using the proposed analytical solution.

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