Residence Time Distributions in non-uniform aquifer recharge and thickness conditions - An analytical approach based on the assumption of Dupuit-Forchheimer - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Hydrology Year : 2019

Residence Time Distributions in non-uniform aquifer recharge and thickness conditions - An analytical approach based on the assumption of Dupuit-Forchheimer

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Abstract

Residence Times in aquifers result from their internal structure, from the hydrodynamic transport processes and from the recharge conditions to which they are exposed. Beyond the already known residence time distributions (RTD) for either constant aquifer thickness and/or uniform recharge, we investigate the effect of both distributed aquifer thickness and distributed recharge. We develop a semi-analytical approximation of the RTD for generic trapezoidal aquifers exposed to linearly-variable recharges. The solution is derived for a homogeneous 2D cross-sectional aquifer in steady-state conditions following the Dupuit-Forchheimer assumption according to which the vertical head gradients are much smaller than the horizontal head gradients. Close agreement with 2D numerical simulations demonstrates the relevance of the Dupuit-Forchheimer assumption to estimate RTDs as long as the aquifer thickness remains an order of magnitude smaller than the aquifer length. At equivalent aquifer volume, geometrical structure and recharge conditions result in non-trivial and complex RTD shapes that may be uniform, Gamma-like, power-law-like shapes as well as any intermediary shapes. The variety of RTD shapes encountered show the need to systematically include the aquifer structure and recharge conditions in the assessment of RTDs and for their subsequent use for problematics related to water quality. The semi-analytical approximation can be further used in a variety of aquifer systems in complement with other existing solutions as a Lumped Parameter Model for RTDs.
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Dates and versions

insu-02094815 , version 1 (10-04-2019)

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Sarah Leray, Alexandre Gauvain, Jean-Raynald de Dreuzy. Residence Time Distributions in non-uniform aquifer recharge and thickness conditions - An analytical approach based on the assumption of Dupuit-Forchheimer. Journal of Hydrology, 2019, 574, pp.110-128. ⟨10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.04.032⟩. ⟨insu-02094815⟩
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