Key publications by Dutch hydrologists
Complex groundwater whirl systems

By analyzing three-dimensional flow patterns in finite-element models of layered anisotropic aquifers, we found that streamlines often have the shape of spirals. A bundle of such spiralling streamlines was termed a ‘groundwater whirl’. Several analytic solutions have been developed that confirm the existence of groundwater whirls in anisotropic layered aquifers.

Ground Water Whirls

Numerical experiments with steady-state ground water flow models show that spiraling flow lines occur in layered aquifers that have different anisotropic horizontal hydraulic conductivities in adjacent layers. Bundles of such flow lines turning in the same direction can be referred to as ground water whirls.

Groundwater whirls in heterogeneous and anisotropic layered aquifers

Groundwater flow is affected by heterogeneity in the anisotropy. Our investigations started with some simple numerical experiments consisting of one or two homogeneous anisotropic blocks. Three-dimensional pathlines in such models have the shape of spirals; bundles of spiralling pathlines were termed ‘groundwater whirls’.

Groundwater recharge in the Kalahari

The Kalahari is situated in the semi-arid center of southern Africa and can be characterized as a savannah with a sandy subsurface, deep groundwater tables and annual rainfall ranging from 250 mm in the southwest to 550 mm in the northeast. A high infiltration rate and high retention storage during the wet season and subsequent high transpiration by the dense vegetation during the dry season, make that very little water passes the root zone and contributes to aquifer recharge.

Unsteady flow to wells in layered and fissured aquifer systems

A solution has been developed for the calculation of drawdowns in leaky and confined multi-aquifer systems, pumped by a well of constant discharge penetrating one or more of the aquifers. In contrast to earlier solutions the effects of elastic storage in separating and bounding aquitards have now completely been accounted for.

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