Location

Schewel 208

Access Type

Campus Access Only

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

April 2022

Department

Environmental Science

Abstract

Groundwater is an important aspect of a watershed, as it is a reservoir for the storage of water. It both provides water to the surface in dry periods and absorbs excess water in wet periods. The specific purpose of this research was to determine the recharge rate of the water table after a rainfall event, with a goal to also develop a framework for long-term monitoring of the water table along Blackwater Creek upstream of College Lake, and to establish baseline data before the dam removal project. Recharge rate was measured as the lag time between precipitation and groundwater rise. The groundwater at the study site was monitored over the course of five months using automatic water level sensors in wells. Precipitation data were obtained from the City of Lynchburg’s rain gauges. Graphs of the data showed groundwater fluctuation patterns consistent with changes in precipitation amounts over time. The short-term success of this research means that this methodology will be a viable way to monitor groundwater along Blackwater Creek in the long term, which will be useful in tracking changes to the watershed as College Lake is removed and new wetlands are created.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Laura Henry-Stone, David Perault, Jennifer Styrsky

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Apr 6th, 1:30 PM

Effects of Precipitation on Groundwater Level in an Urban Watershed

Schewel 208

Groundwater is an important aspect of a watershed, as it is a reservoir for the storage of water. It both provides water to the surface in dry periods and absorbs excess water in wet periods. The specific purpose of this research was to determine the recharge rate of the water table after a rainfall event, with a goal to also develop a framework for long-term monitoring of the water table along Blackwater Creek upstream of College Lake, and to establish baseline data before the dam removal project. Recharge rate was measured as the lag time between precipitation and groundwater rise. The groundwater at the study site was monitored over the course of five months using automatic water level sensors in wells. Precipitation data were obtained from the City of Lynchburg’s rain gauges. Graphs of the data showed groundwater fluctuation patterns consistent with changes in precipitation amounts over time. The short-term success of this research means that this methodology will be a viable way to monitor groundwater along Blackwater Creek in the long term, which will be useful in tracking changes to the watershed as College Lake is removed and new wetlands are created.