Michael A. Cardiff, Associate Professor
I am interested in understanding aquifer heterogeneity through hydrologic and geophysical methods, and in environmental decision making under uncertainty.
Christopher Zahasky, Assistant Professor
My research focuses on using imaging technologies such as X-ray computed tomography (X-ray CT) and positron emission tomography (PET) to make experimental observations of fluid transport in geologic porous and fractured media. Combined with numerical and analytical methods, it possible to better understand fundamental transport processes that control everything from contaminate transport in aquifers to water and steam migration in geothermal reservoirs. Check out more details on the Experimental Hydrogeology Lab Group Website.
Herbert F. Wang, Professor Emeritus
I am interested in poroelastic behavior of rocks and geodynamical modeling because they link observations to geologic processes.
Mary P. Anderson, Professor Emerita
Current research interests include groundwater-lake studies and recharge estimation. Our groundwater-lake studies are conducted at NSF’s Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site in northern Wisconsin.
Jean M. Bahr, Professor Emerita
The interactions between physical and chemical processes that control mass transport in groundwater are of particular interest to me.
Kenneth R. Bradbury, WGNHS
Michael Fienen, USGS
Dante Fratta, CEE
Jesse Hampton, GLE
Randall J. Hunt, USGS
David J. Hart, WGNHS
David P. Krabbenhoft, USGS
Steve Loheide, CEE
HYDROGEOLOGY COURSES AND COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Graduate students from the Hydrogeology program are broadly trained hydrogeologists with the skills needed to tackle a diversity of water resource challenges. In developing an individualized coursework plan, graduate students in the Hydrogeology Program are expected to work with their advisory committee to ensure they have achieved both breadth and depth in hydrological knowledge.
The courses listed below represent common guidelines for students in the program.
CORE COURSE OFFERINGS
|Course Number||Course Title||Generally Offered|
|GEOSCI/GLE-629||Contaminant Hydrogeology||Every Spring|
|GEOSCI/GLE-724||Groundwater Flow Modeling||Spring (alternating years)|
|GLE/CEE-511||Mixing and Transport in the Environment||Spring (alternating years)|
|CEE-515||Hydroclimatology for Water Resources Management||Spring (alternating years)|
Depending on a student’s background and research focus, students may take courses in statistics, computer science, civil engineering, material science, etc.
Special topics courses, field methods courses and seminars are offered routinely, but with less regularity. Hydrogeology graduate students are often expected to take these courses when available. OTHER ADVANCED COURSEWORK (GENERALLY ENCOURAGED, WHEN OFFERED)
|Course Number||Course Title||Last Offered||Previous Topics Examples|
|CEE-619||Special Topics in Hydrology||Spring 2014||Hydroclimatology, Hydroecology|
|GEOSCI-727||Advanced Hydrogeology||Spring 2014||Finite Element Modeling, Numerical Contaminant Transport Modeling|
|GEOSCI-729||Field Methods in Hydrogeology||Summer 2012|
|GEOSCI-929||Seminar in Hydrogeology||Spring 2013||Geostatistics, Wetland Hydrogeology, Groundwater / Surface Interactions|
OTHER RELEVANT COURSES
As an inherently interdisciplinary and multi-faceted field, Geoscience graduate students often take several courses outside of the Geoscience Department. The list below is a small sampling of the many classes that graduate students from the Hydrogeology program have taken in the past. An excellent resource for other water-related coursework is the University’s Water@UW-Madison website. Current students can also visit the University CourseGuide (UW login required).
CEE 700 – Chemistry of Natural Water
CEE 502 – Environmental Organic Chemistry
Math 319 – Techniques in Ordinary Differential Equations
CEE 716 – Statistical Modeling of Hydrologic Systems
CEE 330 – Soil Mechanics
Soil Sci 622 – Soil Physics
Landscape Arch 361 – Wetlands Ecology
Zoo 315/316 – Limnology
IES 710 – Field Investigations in Wetland Ecology
Law 845 – Water Rights Law
CEE 357 – An Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
CEE 635 – Remediation Geotechnics
Soil Sci 523 – Soil Microbiology and Biochemistry
BSE 571 – Small Watershed Engineering
BSE 372 – On-site Waste Water Treatment and Dispersal
Advisor: Mike Cardiff
B.S. Geology, Colorado State University, 2015
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2018
Jeremy is pursuing a Ph.D. in Hydrogeology under the advisement of Professor Mike Cardiff. Jeremy’s general interests lie in aquifer characterization techniques, groundwater modeling, and geophysical methods in hydrologic applications. His research aims to improve fracture characterization methods in deep sedimentary bedrock using oscillatory pumping tests. His work seeks to better describe the effect of scale and fracture heterogeneity on fracture characterization. Ultimately, understanding these effects and improving fracture characterization will allow for more accurate modeling of mass and energy transport through fractured rock aquifers.
Jeremy is originally from Atlanta, GA. Prior to his arrival here in Madison, he has worked as a raft guide, registered nurse, and infantry soldier. His time in the Army saw him exposed to groundwater for the first time in the foothills of Afghanistan’s mountains. This prompted him to return to school and earn his bachelor’s degree in geoscience from Colorado State University. Jeremy’s goal is to use his time here at UW-Madison to build a long and successful academic research career aimed at providing hydrogeologists with the best aquifer characterization and groundwater modeling techniques.
Cardiff, M., Lim, D. D., Patterson, J. R., Akerley, J., Spielman, P., Lopeman, J., et al. (2018). Geothermal production and reduced seismicity: Correlation and proposed mechanism. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 482, 470-477. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2017.11.037
Patterson, J. R., M. Cardiff, T. Coleman, H. Wang, K. L. Feigl, J. Akerley, and P. Spielman (2017), Geothermal reservoir characterization using distributed temperature sensing at Brady Geothermal Field, Nevada, The Leading Edge, 36(12), 1024a1-1024a7. doi: 10.1190/tle36121024a1.1. (Preprint)
Advisor: Mike Cardiff
B.S. Geology, Carlton College, 2015
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2018
My current research interests fall in the realm of socio-hydrology, specifically how public perception of hydrogeologic issues compare to perception within the scientific community. I am curious about how we as scientists can better understand public perception to improve our communication of science. I am working on a few projects related to these ideas. The first is funded through the Wisconsin DNR and is related to nitrate contamination in central Wisconsin, where we hope to involve stakeholders to develop a groundwater model in which we estimate “safe at the source” depths for well drilling in the community. I am also working with the USGS on a project studying aquifer depletion in the Mississippi Alluvial Plain, and continuing work from my Master’s studies with Dave Hart of the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History survey developing novel field methods for understanding groundwater/surface water interactions.
Cowdery, T.K., Christenson, C.A., and Ziegeweid, J.R., 2019, The hydrologic benefits of wetland and prairie restoration in western Minnesota—Lessons learned at the Glacial Ridge National Wildlife Refuge, 2002–15: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2019–5041, 81 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20195041.
Roth, J., Christenson, C.A., and Cowdery, T.K., 2019, A Soil-Water-Balance model and precipitation data used for HEC/HMS modelling at the Glacial Ridge National Wildlife Refuge area, northwestern Minnesota, 2002–15: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/P9QRD7A3.
Erickson, M. L., Elliott, S. M., Christenson, C. A., & Krall, A. L. (2018). Predicting geogenic arsenic in drinking water wells in glacial aquifers, north‐central USA: Accounting for depth‐dependent features. Water Resource Research, 54, 10,172– 10,187. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018WR023106
Jones, P.M., Roth, J.L., Trost, J.J., Christenson, C.A., Diekoff, A.L., and Erickson, M.L., 2017, Simulation and assessment of groundwater flow and groundwater and surface-water exchanges in lakes in the northeast Twin Cities Metropolitan Area, Minnesota, 2003 through 2013: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016–5139–B, 88 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20165139B.
American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, December 2019, Poster: “Testing Highly Instrumented Floating Interrogators (HIFI) for dense measurements of stream-aquifer interactions.”
Master’s thesis defense, July 2019: “Big Data for Small Streams: Establishing a method for collection of spatially and temporally dense water-quality and geophysical datasets via canoe.”
Wisconsin American Water Resources Association, February 2019, Oral Presentation: “Testing Highly Instrumented Floating Interrogators (HIFI) for Dense Measurement of Stream-Aquifer Interactions.”
North Central Geological Society of America, April 2018, Oral Presentation: “Inferring Lake and Wetland Sediment Conductivity Variations from EM31 data at the Waubesa Wetlands near Madison, WI.”
UW-Madison GGSA Student Presentations, April 2018, Poster: “Big Data for Small Streams in Wisconsin: Improving understanding of Groundwater/Surface Water Interaction.”
Wisconsin American Water Resources Association, March 2018, Oral Presentation: “Multi-Instrument Stream Surveys with Continuous Data for Better Groundwater/Surface Water Understanding in Wisconsin”
Minnesota Ground Water Association, Spring Conference, April 2017, Poster: “An ArcGIS based tool for Water Table Interpolation.”
Advisor: Jean Bahr
B.S. Geology, Amherst College, 2007
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2010
Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) is a method for the underground storage of water that is used in many parts of the world. In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, ASR using treated surface water was investigated as an option to enhance municipal water supply capacity in Green Bay, WI. ASR was ultimately determined to be infeasible at the site due to high levels of arsenic in the recovered water. My thesis focused on incorporating aquifer heterogeneity into a groundwater flow model for the ASR site and modeling the chemical changes associated with arsenic release and transport during ASR test cycles. Examination of a core from the site allowed for the identification of preferential flow paths within the Tunnel City Group, one of the units penetrated by the ASR well. Oxidation of pyrite is proposed as the source of arsenic during ASR, and these preferential flow zones often coincide with zones of pyrite mineralization.
• Dickoff, Meghan E. 2009, Modeling Flow and Arsenic Contamination in an Aquifer Storage and Recovery System, Green Bay, WI, American Water Resources Association-Wisconsin Section meeting, Stevens Point, WI.
• Dickoff, Meghan E. and Bahr, Jean M. 2009, Modeling Flow and Arsenic Contamination in an Aquifer Storage and Recovery System, Green Bay, WI, Wisconsin Groundwater Association Annual Meeting, Stevens Point, WI.
• Dickoff, Meghan E. and Bahr, Jean M. 2008,, Modeling Aquifer Storage and Recovery and Arsenic Contamination In a Cambrian-Ordovician Aquifer System, Green Bay, WI , Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Houston, TX
Advisor: Mary Anderson
B.S. Geology, Oklahoma State University, 2005
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2008
My graduate research has focused on groundwater flow in glacial deposits. Currently, I am researching the nature of preferential flow paths in a heterogeneous glacially-deposited aquitard and how they affect groundwater flow and transport. This is significant as studies that have investigated preferential flow and related topics in aquitards have mainly focused on flow through aquitards, not flow within the aquitard. A representative site has been selected in Outagamie County, Wisconsin where a bedrock valley has been filled with a thick sequence of sediment, dominated by lake sediment with some glacial till and sand lenses of uncertain deposition. This sediment appears to form an extensive aquitard, occasionally surrounding sand lenses of unknown extent and continuity.
• Dunkle, K.M., Hart, D.J. , Anderson, M.P., 2010, Well log analysis for creation of hydrostratigraphic models, Outagamie County, WI, Wisconsin Groundwater Association Annual Meeting, Brookfield, WI.
• Dunkle, K.M., Mickelson, D.M., Anderson, M.P., and Fienen, M.N., 2009. Hydrostratigraphic and groundwater flow models: Troy Valley Glacial Aquifer, Southeastern Wisconsin, Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Portland, OR.
• Dunkle, K.M., Mickelson, D.M., Anderson, M.P., and Fienen, M.N., 2009. Troy Valley Glacial Aquifer: 3D Hydrostratigraphic Model Aiding Water Management in Southeastern Wisconsin, USA, Three-Dimensional Geological Mapping: Workshop Extended Abstracts, Illinois State Geological Survey, Open File Series 2009-4, p. 1-4.
Advisor: Jean Bahr
B.S. Geology, Eastern Michigan University, 1992
M.S. Geological Sciences, Indiana University, 1994
My graduate research focuses on how urban sewer effluent is able to rapidly migrate into deep, confined aquifers and contaminate water supply wells. Preferential flow pathways may be related to 1) flow though fractures and bedding planes, 2) leaky confining units combined with steep hydraulic gradients due to pumping, or 3) poorly constructed municipal well casings. Field work in Madison, WI involves sampling sewer effluent and groundwater for human enteric viruses and geochemical constituents; measuring water level fluctuations in response to municipal well pumping to determine poroelastic effects; and studies of outcrop, logs, and core to identify fractures.
• Gellasch, C.A., Bradbury, K.R., Borchardt, M.A., Bahr, J.M., 2010, “Identifying pathways for sanitary sewer pathogens to reach deep water supply wells in Madison, Wisconsin” The Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Denver, CO.
• Gellasch, C.A., Bahr, J.M., Borchardt, M.A., Bradbury, K.R., Chase, P.M., Spenser, S.K., 2010, “Groundwater sampling methods using glass wool filtration to trace human enteric viruses in Madison, Wisconsin” (poster) The Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Denver, CO.
• Gellasch, C.A. (in press), Hydrogeological support to United States military operations, 1917-2010. In: Rose, E. P. F. & Mather, J. D. (eds) Military uses of hydrogeology: past and present. Geological Society of London, Special Publications.
• Gellasch, C.A. (in review), Hydrogeology of Afghanistan and its impact on military operations. In: Harmon, R.S. and MacDonald E.V. (eds) Military Geosciences in the 21st Century. Reviews in Engineering Geology Series, Geological Society of America.
Advisor: Mary Anderson
B.S. Geology & Geophysics, UW-Madison, 2008
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2010
My project involved investigating sources of nutrients to a lake in Door County undergoing eutrophication. As the lake is connected to the groundwater system, this included building a groundwater flow model to delineate the zone of groundwater contribution to the lake.
It’s a beautiful place (even if the logistics of working on and around an untamed fen can be a bit frustrating) where cranberries and carnivorous pitcher plants can be found 20 yards from pH 8 lake water full of huge snail shells. It’s also the only place I’ve ever been physically threatened by a Sandhill crane.
• Johnson, S.K., Anderson, M.P., Bradbury, K. R. 2010, Investigation of groundwater nutrient contribution to Dunes Lake, Door County, Wisconsin, Wisconsin Groundwater Association Annual Meeting, Waukesha, WI
Advisor: Jean Bahr
B.A. Geology and History, Gustavus Adolphus College, 2005
M.S. Geology, UW-Madison, 2010
M.S. Water Resources Management, UW-Madison, 2010
Subsurface heterogeneity in hydraulic properties and processes is a fundamental challenge in hydrogeology. My M.S. research with Professor Bahr focused on the use of distributed fiber-optic temperature sensing (DTS), which allows for the rapid profiling of temperature, to characterize aquifer heterogeneity and flow in multi-aquifer wells. This included experiments at the Oak Creek, WI Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) site, where temperature was continuously profiled in an 1800 ft. deep, 20″ diameter monitoring well, under ambient conditions and with an identical ASR well pumping from 180 ft. away. The DTS results, interpreted in combination with numerical modeling and extensive ASR cycle data, recorded complex, transient vertical flows in the monitoring well induced by pumping in the ASR well. Single-well thermal tracer tests, in which the injection of heated water was monitored by DTS, were also conducted in two multi-aquifer wells near Madison.
Other projects I enjoyed at UW included an interdisciplinary practicum for my Water Resources Management degree, which investigated the environmental, social, institutional and land-tenure issues affecting the restoration of a former Cypress-Tupelo swamp in New Orleans, and a DTS experiment measuring ventilation 4100′ below ground in the Homestake Mine.
• Leaf, Andrew T., Hart, David J., Bahr, Jean M. 2010, Single-well thermal tracer tests using distributed temperature sensing, Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Denver, CO.
• Leaf, Andrew T., Bahr, Jean M., Hart, David J. 2009, Distributed temperature sensing as a hydrostratigraphic characterization tool,
Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Portland, OR.
• Leaf, Andrew T., Bahr, Jean M. 2008, Water quality changes during aquifer storage and recovery in the Cambrian-Ordovician Aquifer, Oak Creek, WI, Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Houston, TX.
Advisor: Jean Bahr
B.S. Geology, Appalachian State University, 2009
B.A. English, Appalachian State University, 2009
I am working with the USGS and WGNHS in the Park Falls District of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest to determine how climate change will affect surface water and groundwater resources in northern Wisconsin. We are using a groundwater flow model (GFLOW) to determine how much total flow in certain streams and lakes in the forest is dependent on groundwater discharge. We will verify the modeled values of groundwater discharge with a variety of techniques, including field measurements, stable isotope mass balances, geochemical mass balances and baseflow recession.
Once we determine and verify groundwater discharges, we will use precipitation values predicted by down-scaled climate models in the groundwater flow model. How those surface water bodies react to the new precipitation values will give us some insight into how susceptible streams and lakes are to climate change, and how to best manage those surface water bodies. Our hypothesis is that as groundwater dependency increases in a surface water body, lake level and stream flow variability decreases, since groundwater will offer a long term source of water that is comparatively unaffected by short term variability in precipitation.
• Pruitt, A.H., Bradbury, K.R., Hunt, R.J., and Bahr, J.M., 2011, Proposed Methods for Quantifying Groundwater Contribution to Surface Water Resources, Park Falls District-Chequamegon National Forest, WI: American Water Resources Association Wisconsin Section Annual Meeting, Appleton, Wisconsin.
• Pruitt, A.H., and Sidle, R.C., 2010, Determining the Amount and Location of Fly Ash Released into a River Using Coring and Point Counting: Geological Society of America, 2010 Joint Annual Meeting, Denver, Colorado.
• Pruitt, A.H., Scharer, K.M., Fumal, T.E., Weldon, R.J., Gilleland, C.L., and Sicker, R., 2009, Microgeomorphic reconstruction to determine slip rate on the San Andreas fault near Littlerock, California: 2009 Southern California Earthquake Center Annual Meeting, Palm Springs, California.
Advisor: Herb Wang
B.S. Geology, University of Tennessee, 2008
Another active interest is coupled pore fluid diffusion and stress analysis. More specifically, I am interested in using finite element modeling to demonstrate the effect of subsurface heterogeneity on reverse groundwater fluctuations during aquifer pumping.My research interests deal mostly with the poroelastic deformation of rock masses. A large component of this research is the characterization of rock mass properties based upon baseline tilt measurements. Hydrostatic level system (HLS) arrays measure the relative displacement of two points along a rock surface with precision up to 10-8 radians. Forces generating displacement include Earth tides, large distributed surface loads (e.g. floods), and anthropogenic activity. I am currently processing and analyzing data from three HLS arrays: the DUSEL site (former Homestake gold mine) in Lead, SD, the LaFarge limestone mine in North Aurora, IL, and the MINOS facility at Fermilab in Batavia, IL.
• Roberts, J., Wang, H., Fratta, D., Stetler, L., Volk, J., 2010, “Evaluation of Rock Mass Responses Using High Resolution Water-level Tiltmeter Arrays” American Geophysical Union Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA
Hydrogeology-related theses completed by students within the department often have hydrogeology program faculty members as their primary advisors, though some students may also complete hydrogeology-related theses working under other advisors. In these cases, students often have hydrogeology faculty member on their thesis committee
(*Advisor is in the hydrogeology program, unless otherwise specified)
|2019||Christenson, Catherine||Cardiff||M.S.||Big Data for Small Streams: Establishing a method for collection of spatially and temporally dense water-quality and geophysical datasets via canoe|
|2018||Patterson, Jeremy R.||Cardiff||M.S.||Understanding constraints on geothermal sustainability through reservoir characterization at Brady geothermal field, Nevada|
|2017||Andelman, Elliott||Cardiff||M.S.||Multi-sourced geologic data integration: A time-based approach|
|Heinle, Benjamin||Cardiff||M.S.||The Impact of Surface Heterogeneities on Fracture Flow and Transport Processes: Visualizations using a Novel Thermochromic Laboratory Apparatus|
|Krause, Jacob||Cardiff||M.S.||A tracer approach to estimate groundwater nitrate loading from agricultural fields: Application to a shallow sand and gravel aquifer|
|Olson, Joshua||Bahr||M.S.||Long-term alterations in groundwater chemistry induced by municipal well pumping|
|Schlaudt, Elisabeth||Bahr||M.S.||Developing a groundwater flow model for slough management in Sauk County, WI|
|2016||Sayler, F. Claire||Cardiff||M.S.||Characterization of bedrock secondary porosity using Multi-frequency Oscillatory Flow Interference testing|
|Zhao, Hangjian||Bahr||M.S.||Evaluating seepage lake drought resilience using stable isotopes of water and groundwater-flow models|
|Zhou, YaoQuan||Cardiff||Ph.D.||Oscillatory hydraulic tomography : numerical experiments and laboratory studies|
|2015||Baldwin, Jonathan A.||Wang||M.S.||Developing a Multichannel Analysis of Surface Waves (MASW) method for application to Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) array and co-located seismometers at Garner Valley, California|
|Sellwood, Stephen||Bahr||Ph.D.||Characterization of groundwater flow in sandstone aquifers using heat as an in-well tracer|
|2014||Castongia, Ethan E.||Wang||M.S.||An experimental investigation of Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) on lake ice|
|Haserodt, Megan J.||Bahr||M.S.||Effects of roads on groundwater flow patterns in peatlands and implications for nearby salmon streams on the Kenai Peninsula, AK|
|Li, Yang||Cardiff||M.S. (GLE)||Using multiple conceptual models to understand transboundary groundwater flows in Red Cliff Reservation, WI|
|2013||Meulemans, Ashley J.||Wang||M.S.||Tomographic imaging of mine-induced stress changes in North Aurora, Illinois|
|Potier, Chelsea E.||Wang||M.S.||Subsurface tiltmeter observations of solid earth tides and rock excavation in Northeastern Illinois|
|Pruitt, Aaron H.||Bahr||M.S.||Potential impacts of climate change on groundwater/surface water interaction, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, Wisconsin|
|2012||Dunkle, Kallina M.||Anderson||Ph.D.||Preferential flow paths in heterogeneous glacially deposited aquitards|
|Gellasch, Christopher A.||Bahr||Ph.D.||Vulnerability of urban public supply wells in fractured siliciclastic aquifer systems|
Older theses for the last several decades are compiled here.