Hydrogeo group

Capitalizing on Innovation, Technology, and the Evolution of Knowledge

Groundwater System Analysis

Aquifer Characterization, Impact Analysis, Stable Isotope Geochemistry, Numerical Flow Modeling, Feasibility Studies, Permitting, Dewatering Design Support, Hydrogeochemical Modeling and Visualization

Groundwater System Analysis

At HGG we provide our clients with a full range of services that enables us to evaluate and resolve complex groundwater issues.

HGG professionals share a common interest in improving the understanding of groundwater resources through the perspective of a specific technical expertise for both regional and local scale studies. Our team provides a holistic approach to characterizing the systems by integrating geochemistry, hydrogeology, engineering and modeling to be able to understand the complex systems that will influence the security of a diminishing resource. Proper analysis improves the allocation of water rights to maximize the beneficial use of groundwater resources while protecting the environment and surrounding habitats. We combine the fundamentals of geochemistry and hydrogeology to be able to conceptually understand and explain the groundwater and surface water systems. We apply modeling to be able to quantify potential impacts to these systems and visualization to present and validate our findings.

HGG takes a proactive approach at solving technical issues, preventing further consequences that can be avoided with the appropriate direction and guidance of experienced professionals.

The following is a summary of the specialized services relating to Groundwater System Analysis provided by HGG:

Geochemistry

Understanding the geochemical processes of a groundwater system is integral in the development of the conceptual model to identify the processes and impacts to systems when nonnative waters are injected into underlying aquifers. HGG integrates stable isotope geochemistry and groundwater age-dating to be able to understand the system dynamics, where recharge is coming from, and where groundwater is likely to move. The geochemistry is very specific at each location, but can provide the insight that often helps solve complex problems and the processes that define the flow regime of a particular system.

Data Acquisition

A solution is only a strong as the data used to interpret and develop each finding. HGG believes in allocating our resources and expertise at the onset of every project to design the proper sampling protocol and monitoring programs to be able to capitalize on each investment in research, field investigation, and analysis. This results in significant saving to our clients and enhancements to overall deliverables and solutions that cannot be quantified.

HGG professionals have developed numerous programs and sampling plans incorporating geochemistry, hydrogeology, modeling and engineering. Selected areas of expertise include well design, pump test development and analysis, standard and customized down-hole groundwater sampling, recharge and evapotranspiration investigations, and laboratory attenuation quantification.

Aquifer Characterization

The characterization of an aquifer system is fundamental to groundwater system analysis. HGG understands the significance of properly understanding the systems being analyzed and its impact to a project. Inadequate characterization of a complex aquifer may result in serious implications to the validity of a groundwater analysis, influencing the management and profitability of a project. HGG combines the technical expertise of its team members in geochemistry, hydrogeology, modeling and visualization to prepare defensible and intuitive characterizations of aquifer systems.

Selected areas of expertise include:
  • Conceptual Model Development
  • Geologic Modeling
  • Block Modeling
  • Numerical Flow Modeling
  • Aquifer Test Analysis
  • Sampling Protocol Development and Execution
  • Stable Isotope Geochemistry
  • Recharge Analyses
  • Analytical Groundwater Modeling
  • Dewatering Analysis and Execution
  • Well Design and Installation
  • Pump Test Protocol, Execution and Analysis
  • Development of Monitoring Programs
  • Water Balance Development and Modeling

Impact Prediction

Impact prediction is used to be able to predict and quantify potential impacts to the groundwater and surface water systems that result from anthropogenic influences, such as excavations, drilling, pumping, and dewatering. If the groundwater and surface water systems are properly characterized, the ability to make predictions is much more defensible.

The technical skills offered through HGG combine areas of geochemistry, hydrogeology, modeling and visualization to be able to quantify and visualize potential impacts to groundwater systems. HGG integrates hydrogeology and geochemistry to develop a conceptual model of the groundwater system. We incorporate these findings into numerical and analytical modeling programs to reconstruct the processes of those systems to provide an efficient tool for performing complex analysis. We visualize the systems being modeled using state-of-the-art technology to transform complex analysis into a visual presentation that can be understood by managers, regulators, the general public, interest groups, and other professionals representing nontechnical disciplines.

HGG has significant experience quantifying, predicting and visualizing potential impacts that may result from the injection of non-native water into an aquifer system for Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) programs or water supply projects. We incorporate geochemistry for mining and energy related projects to understand processes that take place when non-native water interacts with subsurface geology to predict potential groundwater impacts when non-native water is injected into the subsurface. We utilize groundwater age-dating to assess impacts for recharge analyses and apply numerical flow modeling to evaluate water supply issues for mines, energy companies, and other construction or expansion projects. The combination of technical skills offered by HGG provides a holistic approach to quantifying and understand potential impacts to surface water and groundwater systems.

Hydrogeochemical Modeling (analytical and numerical)

HGG professionals utilize, major, minor and trace element, physical properties, organic compounds, stable- and radioactive isotopes to create three-dimensional geochemical maps and to provide input into equilibrium- and kinetic-based models to interpret groundwater evolution, water-rock interactions and chemical control mechanisms.

Water Tailings Management

The combination of technical skills offered by HGG provides a holistic approach to quantifying, predicting, modeling, and visualizing potential impacts to groundwater systems from the storage of solid wastes such as tailings, waste rock and process residues. HGG professionals are recognized experts in communicating to both technical and nontechnical audiences the multifaceted problems associated with improper storage or management of mine related wastes. Our experts help support management decisions, visualize subsurface conditions, and develop recommendations for enhancing the protection of our groundwater systems.

HGG professionals are recognized for their expertise in:
  • Optimization of Water Usage
  • Evaluation of Water Sources and Quantity
  • Water Balance
  • Tailings Design
  • Environmental Impact Assessments
  • Independent Peer Review
  • Regulatory Support
  • Fate and Transport Modeling
  • Groundwater Flow Modeling
  • Permitting
  • Preparation of Mine Water Management Plans

Closure and Reclamation

HGG professionals are recognized experts in providing technical support for the preparation of mine closure plans. HGG utilizes our expertise in geochemistry, hydrogeology, modeling and visualization offering proactive approaches and assistance in identifying the key components for successful reclamation. The technical skills offered by HGG benefit our clients by clearly articulating the critical issues and visualizing the technical processes and potential impacts that are involved with mine closure. HGG professionals are confident and experienced in offering support and technical guidance for situations when stakeholders, regulators, and the public interact.

HGG specializes in the following services:
  • Cap and Cover System Design Support
  • Management of Sulfide Wastes
  • Regulatory Permitting
  • Long Term Monitoring and Maintenance Plans
  • Risk Assessment
  • Closure Monitoring
  • Modeling and Visualization

Modeling and Visualization

HGG, brings to light what can’t be seen. We transform visions and ideas into a platform that can be presented and communicated to the masses.

For most large operations that may result in potential impacts to surface water and groundwater systems, permitting is a critical element that will determine the future of a project. HGG specializes in the application of modeling and visualization to expedite and facilitate the permitting process for mining, energy and water resources programs.

It is very common during the permitting process to seek approval from both technical and non-technical audiences. The experts at HGG are well versed in the obstacles that must be overcome to gain acceptance from both technical and nontechnical members of the public, interest groups, local and federal agencies.

Examples of our expertise include:
  • Presenting and visualizing potential groundwater drawdown that may result during the development and operation of a power plant or an expansion of a mine.
  • Assessing potential impacts to surface water and groundwater systems from seepage from waste rock piles during mining operations.
  • Remediation support to assist in the evaluation of cap and cover systems.
  • Presenting and visualizing impacts that may result from implementation of an ASR program to regulators and public interest groups on behalf of water resources managers, utility companies, and municipalities.