Rain that cannot be absorbed into the ground collects on the surface, forming runoff streams. Water from both runoff and from groundwater discharge moves toward streams and rivers and may eventually reach the ocean. Oceans are the largest surface water bodies that contribute to evaporation.
Figure 4. The unsaturated zone, capillary fringe, water table, and saturated zone. Water beneath the land surface occurs in two principal zones, the unsaturated zone and the saturated zone. In the unsaturated zone, the spaces between particle grains and the cracks in rocks contain both air and water.
Also, is an aquifer the same as groundwater? Groundwater and aquifers The upper surface of this zone of saturation is called the water table. The saturated zone beneath the water table is called an aquifer, and aquifers are huge storehouses of water. When a water-bearing rock readily transmits water to wells and springs, it is called an aquifer.
Simply so, what is the connection between surface water and groundwater?
Surface water and groundwater systems are connected in most landscapes. Streams interact with groundwater in three basic ways: streams gain water from inflow of groundwater through the streambed, streams lose water by outflow through the streambed, or they do both depending upon the location along the stream.
What affects groundwater?
Industrial discharges, urban activities, agriculture, groundwater pumpage, and disposal of waste all can affect groundwater quality. Contaminants from leaking fuel tanks or fuel or toxic chemical spills may enter the groundwater and contaminate the aquifer.
Where is groundwater located?
Groundwater is the water found underground in the cracks and spaces in soil, sand and rock. It is stored in and moves slowly through geologic formations of soil, sand and rocks called aquifers.
What are the types of groundwater?
Groundwater can be found in aquifers. An aquifer is a body of water-saturated sediment or rock in which water can move readily. There are two main types of aquifers: unconfined and confined.
What are the two zones of groundwater?
Groundwater is found in two zones. The unsaturated zone, immediately below the land surface, contains water and air in the open spaces, or pores. The saturated zone, a zone in which all the pores and rock fractures are filled with water, underlies the unsaturated zone.
How is groundwater treated?
Groundwater generally is treated by drilling recovery wells to pump contaminated water to the surface. Commonly used groundwater treatment approaches include air stripping, filtering with granulated activated carbon (GAC), and air sparging. Air stripping transfers volatile compounds from water to air.
How long does groundwater stay in the ground?
Water at very shallow depths might be just a few hours old; at moderate depth, it may be 100 years old; and at great depth or after having flowed long distances from places of entry, the water may have been in the ground for several thousand years.
How is groundwater recharged?
Groundwater is recharged naturally by rain and snow melt and to a smaller extent by surface water (rivers and lakes). Recharge can help move excess salts that accumulate in the root zone to deeper soil layers, or into the groundwater system. Tree roots increase water saturation into groundwater reducing water runoff.
How do you measure groundwater level?
The most reliable method of obtaining the depth to the water table at any given time is to measure the water level in a shallow well with a tape. If no wells are available, surface geophysical methods can sometimes be used, depending on surface accessibility for placing electric or acoustic probes.
Can groundwater flow uphill?
As already noted, groundwater does not flow in straight lines. It flows from areas of higher hydraulic head to areas of lower hydraulic head, and this means that it can flow “uphill” in many situations. This is illustrated in Figure 14.8.
What are the advantages of surface water?
Advantages – The primary advantages to using surface water as a water source include the following: It is easily located. It takes no sophisticated equipment to find a surface water source. surface as distinguished from water underground (groundwater).
Why is surface water important?
Surface water serves many purposes The main uses of surface water include drinking-water and other public uses, irrigation uses, and for use by the thermoelectric-power industry to cool electricity-generating equipment. Water from groundwater sources accounted for the remaining 26 percent.
What do you mean by surface water?
Surface water is water on the surface of continents such as in a river, lake, or wetland. It can be contrasted with groundwater and atmospheric water. Non-saline surface water uses is replenished by precipitation and by recruitment from ground-water.
What does surface water and groundwater have in common?
Surface water is found in lakes, rivers and streams and is drawn into the public water supply by an intake. However, groundwater commonly contains less contamination than surface water because the rock tends to act as a filter to remove some contaminants. Imagine that rain falls and the rainwater soaks into the ground.
Why is groundwater and surface water important?
Groundwater, which is in aquifers below the surface of the Earth, is one of the Nation’s most important natural resources. It often takes more work and costs more to access groundwater as opposed to surface water, but where there is little water on the land surface, groundwater can supply the water needs of people.
What is the relationship between groundwater and surface water quizlet?
Surface water is all water above the land, including lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, floodwater, and runoff. Ground water is the water beneath the surface of the earth, consisting largely of surface water that has seeped down: the source of water in springs and wells. You just studied 11 terms!