Main content area

Delineation of groundwater prospective zones from a delta region of India, using geoelectrical and water quality approach

Nageswara Rao, P. V., Appa Rao, S., Subba Rao, N.
Environmental earth sciences 2018 v.77 no.17 pp. 616
aquifers, brackish water, clay, drinking water, electrical conductivity, floodplains, freshwater, groundwater, irrigation water, rivers, sand, surveys, topsoil, water quality, water supply, wells, India
Geoelectrical survey was carried out in the western delta region of River Vasista Godavari, Andhra Pradesh, India, for delineation of groundwater prospective zones due to acute shortage of water supply for various purposes. Forty-six vertical electrical soundings (VES) were done, employing the Schlumberger configuration with a maximum AB/2 of 160 m. The interpreted results of VES show four to five layers with variable thicknesses, such as topsoil zone (1.5–3 m), clay zone (0.84–32 m), finer sand zone (2–72 m), medium to coarse sand zone (4 to 28.8 m) and clay zone (1.2–∞ m), indicating a multi-aquifer system. These results are corroborated with the known lithologs of the study area. Further, the resistivity is also compared with electrical conductivity (EC) of groundwater observed nearby shallow wells representing buried channel (BC), flood plain (FP) and coastal (C) zones, which indicate slightly brackish to brackish water (EC: 1470–6010 µS/cm), whereas the groundwater observed from deep wells shows the fresh (EC: 726–1380 µS/cm), fresh to brackish (EC: 1010 to 3250 µS/cm), and brackish water (EC: 3020 to 4170 µS/cm) located in BC, FP and C zones, respectively. This survey reveals the prospective aquifer zones with potable water at VES locations of 4–6, 8, 10, 11, 14, 16–28, 33–36, 39 and 42–44, where the resistivity values vary from 10 to 40 Ω m. The slightly brackish and brackish water zones are also observed from the resistivity of less than 10 Ω m at shallow depth in BC (VES-22, 37, 38 and 46), FP (VES-1, 2, 7, 29, 30 and 40) and C (VES-3, 4, 9, 12, 13, 15, 31, 32, 41 and 45) zones. As a result, the present investigation has delineated the freshwater zones at shallow (< 12 m) and also at deeper depths (30–45 m) as prospective areas, where BC zone occurs. Freshwater pockets also identified in FP (VES-8 and 39) and C (VES-11, 14 and 15) zones. Thus, this study helps to solve the drinking and irrigation water problems.