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TitleCharacterization of a regional aquifer system in the Maritimes Basin, Eastern Canada
AuthorRivard, CORCID logo; Michaud, Y; Lefebvre, R; Deblonde, C; Rivera, AORCID logo
SourceWater Resources Management vol. 22, 2008 p. 1649-1675,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 2004150
PublisherSpringer Nature
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceNew Brunswick; Nova Scotia; Prince Edward Island
NTS11E/13; 11L/04; 11L/05; 21H/14; 21H/15; 21H/16; 21I/01; 21I/02; 21I/03; 21I/06; 21I/07; 21I/08
AreaMoncton; Amherst; Summerside; Northumberland Strait
Lat/Long WENS-65.5000 -63.5000 46.5000 45.7500
Subjectshydrogeology; aquifers; groundwater; groundwater flow; groundwater regimes; groundwater movement; modelling; fracture analyses; fractures; hydrostratigraphic units; hydraulic analyses; Maritimes Basin
Illustrationslocation maps; tables; plots; block diagrams
Released2008 04 22
AbstractA regional hydrogeological study was carried out in theMaritimes provinces, in one of the main aquifer systems in Canada. The study area covers a land surface of 10,500 km2, of which 9,400 km2 is over Carboniferous and younger rocks. The sedimentary fractured bedrock is composed of a sequence of discontinuous strata of highly variable hydraulic properties, and is overlain by a thin layer of glacial till (mostly 4 to 8 m). Depending on areas, 46 to 100% of the population relies on groundwater for water supply. Almost all residential
wells are shallow (28 m on average) open holes that are cased only through the surficial sediments. This paper describes a regional hydrogeological investigation based on targeted fieldwork, the integration of a wide variety of existing multisource datasets and groundwater flow numerical modelling. The aim of this paper is to present the current state of understanding of the aquifer system in a representative area of the Maritimes Basin, along with the methodology used to characterize and analyze its distinct behaviour at the regional, local and point scales. This regional hydrogeological system contains confined and unconfined zones, and its aquifer lenticular strata extend only a few kilometers. Preferential groundwater recharge occurs where sandy tills are present. The estimated mean annual recharge rate to the bedrock aquifers ranges between 130 and 165 mm/year. Several geological formations of this Basin provide good aquifers, with hydraulic conductivity in the range of 5×10?6 to 10?4 m/s. Based on numerical flow modelling, faults were interpreted to play a key role in the regional flow. Pumping test results revealed that the aquifers can locally be very heterogeneous and anisotropic, but behave similarly to porous media. Work performed at the local scale indicated that most water-producing fractures generally have a sub-horizontal dip along a north-east (45°) strike.

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