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High-yielding aquifers in crystalline basement: insights about the role of fault zones, exemplified by Armorican Massif, France

Abstract : While groundwater constitutes a crucial resource in many crystalline-rock regions worldwide, well-yield conditions are highly variable and barely understood. Nevertheless, it is well known that fault zones may have the capacity to ensure sustainable yield in crystalline media, but there are only a few and disparate examples in the literature that describe high-yield conditions related to fault zones in crystalline rock basements. By investigating structural and hydraulic properties of remarkable yielding sites identified in the Armorican Massif, western France, this study discusses the main factors that may explain such exceptional hydrogeological properties. Twenty-three sites, identified through analysis of databases available for the region, are investigated. Results show that: (1) the highly transmissive fractures are related to fault zones which ensure the main water inflow in the pumped wells; (2) the probability of intersecting such transmissive fault zones does not vary significantly with depth, at least within the range investigated in this study (0–200 m); and (3) high yield is mainly controlled by the structural features of the fault zones, in particular the fault dip and the presence of a connected storage reservoir. Conceptual models that summarize the hydrological properties of high-yield groundwater resources related to fault zones in crystalline basement are shown and discussed.
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https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-01355387
Contributor : Isabelle Dubigeon <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - 10:54:37 AM
Last modification on : Friday, April 5, 2019 - 8:17:50 PM

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Clément Roques, Olivier Bour, Luc Aquilina, Benoît Dewandel. High-yielding aquifers in crystalline basement: insights about the role of fault zones, exemplified by Armorican Massif, France. Hydrogeology Journal, Springer Verlag, 2016, 24 (8), pp.2157-2170. ⟨10.1007/s10040-016-1451-6⟩. ⟨insu-01355387⟩

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