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An Integrated Geology and Geophysics Approach to Delineate Freshwater-brackish Water Intrusion from well logs of Hueco Bolson, El Paso, TX

Anita Thapalia
Department of Geological Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso El Paso, TX, 79968 USA
[email protected]

Determining the quantity and quality of aquifers is critical for planning future growth in the arid regions of West Texas, southern New Mexico and northern Mexico. It is vital to accurately delineate the boundary between the fresh and brackish water of the aquifer especially in regions where aquifers are the primary sources of water supply. The purpose of this study is to identify subsurface structures, to demarcate freshwater-brackish water contact and to evaluate depositional framework and sedimentological facies of the Hueco Bolson Aquifer. Multidisciplinary approach integrating geochemical, geophysical and sedimentological along with understanding of regional geology studies will address the subsurface structures in the Hueco Bolson Aquifer in El Paso area. My project involves testing how both the structure (faults acting as barriers/conduits to flow and compartmentalization of fresh/saline water) and the sedimentology (saline water is concentrating in regions where playa sediments are thicker) plays a vital role where fresh water is located. The boundary between the freshwater and brackish water will determine an estimate of the volume of freshwater for groundwater budget and sustainable resource management. This study also helps to predict where we might be more likely to encounter fresh water in the basin that has not yet been drilled and explored in the adjacent regions and other aquifers in El Paso region.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90183©2013 AAPG Foundation 2013 Grants-in-Aid Projects