Articles and Technical Papers

Where would science be without incessant note-taking? When research gets published – it’s a pretty big deal and can usually be found over decades. Often good project reporting, not meant for publication, gets lost. This is why we felt it important to compile some work we think is notable so that you can find it easily and digitally. We also add some commentary for your benefit.

Below are links to PDF files. Clicking on the title of any that you are interested in will open a new tab to view or download that publication. While most browsers can read PDF files just fine, you may want to use the (free!) Adobe Reader for the best experience.

Some Project Report Classics

A Cautionary Tale:

Elkhart, Indiana’s South Wellfield, one of three operated by the city’s Department of Public Works and Utilities (DPWU), is developed in the glacio-fluvial outwash Yellow Creek tributary of the St. Joseph River aquifer. Hydrogeologic details are provided in the original wellfield testing report of 1964 (Keck Consulting for Peerless Midwest), and in Imbrigiotta and Martin (1981) and Arihood and Cohen (1997). This wellfield was at the time developed with three high-capacity screened “gravel-wall” wells, and supplies a conventional aeration/pressure-filtration water treatment plant. Over time, these wells have experienced performance decline, adversely affecting the economy of the plant and its operations, with periodic attempts to restore production capacity.

Field Evaluation of Emergency Well Disinfection for Contamination Events:

Executive Summary

Hurricane Floyd (September 1999) caused extensive flooding in North Carolina and adjacent Atlantic coastal areas. In the flooding, thousands of homes were made uninhabitable and 48 people died. Potential fecal and pathogenic bacterial contamination of wells due to their immersion by flood waters was identified by state authorities as a significant health risk, consistent with other flooding events. To restore many of the 12,000 affected wells, over 2000 of which showed total coliform positive (potentially unsafe) results, wells were disinfected in the affected areas. However, a significant fraction of wells were still not providing coliform-free water after multiple treatments. Disinfection methods developed for preventive use, or to inactivate bacteria introduced during service or other small-scale contamination may be inadequate in response to flood water inundation. Flood waters contain very high loads of sediment, debris, and chemical and biological contaminants. Significant depth of immersion can force contaminants into the aquifer formation.

To improve response to such large-scale flooding events in the future, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) identified the need to develop procedures and protocols for emergency well disinfection that it can recommend to state and local emergency management agencies.

FEMA commissioned the National Ground Water Association to conduct a study and provide recommendations for improved practices to respond to such mass flooding-immersion events. NGWA chose Ground Water Science to conduct the work, which we completed on a rapid schedule in 2002 with the help of EGIS PA, Chapel Hill, NC. The report was duly prepared, submitted to and accepted by FEMA, then never seen again. Some derivations were published and the work formed a basis for recommendations by NGWA after other big flooding events such as Hurricane Katrina. However, we thought we should (with NGWA’s permission) publish the full report.

The last chapter has a series of recommendations for emergency management preparation for and rapid response to a mass flooding event that inundates large numbers of wells.

Over a long time in a consulting practice, and especially with online-only publishing of reports, it is easy for some really good content to become lost. These are reports that we have generated that have wider benefit beyond the client’s immediate need. The newer ones are published with client permission. 

Background Document for Monitoring Program

A review of geomicrobiology with a focus on coal-seam-gas-affected aquifers — For Queensland Dept. of Natural Resources and Mines (2015) — Part of the Investigation of Microbial Aspects of Groundwater Quality and Volatile By-products Related to Coal Seam Gas Development


Microbiological and Water Quality Sampling and Analysis Plan

For Queensland Dept. of Natural Resources and Mines (2015) — Part of the Investigation of Microbial Aspects of Groundwater Quality and Volatile By-products Related to Coal Seam Gas Development

Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports (attachments linked following)

Closed Basin Report: Evaluation of Problems with Closed Basin Division Salvage Wells with Recommendations– For Bureau of Reclamation (2000).

Report of Investigations with Recommendations, Biological Fouling of the Pressure Relief Drainage System, Pablo Canyon Dam, Montana

Technical Services Center Official Version, Pablo Canyon report

Drain and Well Maintenance and Rehabilitation for Dam Safety: Review with Recommendations (2006)

Current Research in Dam Drain Clogging and its Prevention, Proc. Dam Safety ’06, 23rd Annual Conference, Association of State Dam Safety Officers (Smith and Hosler, 2006) — The bite-sized summary of the “dam work” reports for USBR

Operation and Maintenance of  Extraction and Injection Wells at HTRW sites, EP 1110-1-27, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Alford, Leach and Smith, 2000, currently accessible also at this USACE.ARMY.MIL link). In memory of George Alford and our project meetings in the Florida piney woods.