Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Civil and Environmental Engineering






This study examined and evaluated methods of assessing vertical groundwater flow in clay tills above high permeability zones (HPZs). The primary objective was to develop a series of rapid tests which can be employed to determine if an HPZ within otherwise low permeability soil could facilitate the spread of groundwater contamination. The results of this study demonstrated that the conventional method of estimating vertical groundwater flow velocity using the Darcy equation is questionable in low permeability media. The most favourable techniques were isotopic techniques. The distribution of oxygen-18 and tritium in groundwater yielded the most conservative estimate of penetration of recently recharged waters. Bacteriological techniques, namely the bacterial counting tests, agreed with the isotopic techniques in estimating the depth of active groundwater flow. Physical techniques were also effective. Pulse interference testing of an HPZ was used to determine its storativity and infer that it was confined. Induced infiltration testing was used to infer hydraulic connection of an HPZ to the surface when the HPZ was shallow. Geochemical techniques were not effective. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)Dept. of Geological Engineering. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis1992 .C552. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 31-04, page: 1696. Thesis (M.A.Sc.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 1992.