USGS Visual Identifier

Hydraulic Properties of the Madison Aquifer System in the Western Rapid City Area, South Dakota

By Earl A. Greene

U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY
Water-Resources Investigations Report 93-4008

Prepared in cooperation with the
CITY OF RAPID CITY


Abstract

Available information on hydrogeology, data from borehole geophysical logs, and aquifer tests were used to determine the hydraulic properties of the Madison aquifer. From aquifer-test analysis, transmissivity and storage coefficient were determined for the Minnelusa and Madison aquifers, and vertical hydraulic conductivity (Kv') along with specific storage (Ss') for the Minnelusa confining bed.

Borehole geophysical well logs were used to determine the thickness and location of the Minnelusa aquifer, the lower Minnelusa confining bed, and the Madison aquifer within the Madison Limestone. Porosity values determined from quantitative analysis of borehole geophysical well logs were used in analyzing the aquifer-test data. The average porosity at the two aquifer-test sites is about 10 percent in the Minnelusa aquifer, 5 percent in the lower Minnelusa confining bed, and 35 percent in the Madison aquifer.

The first aquifer test, which was conducted at Rapid City production well #6, produced measured drawdown in the Minnelusa and Madison aquifers. Neuman and Witherspoon's method of determining the hydraulic properties of leaky two-aquifer systems was used to evaluate the aquifer-test data by assuming the fracture and solution-opening network is equivalent to a porous media. Analysis of the aquifer test for the Minnelusa aquifer yielded a transmissivity value of 12,000 feet squared per day and a storage coefficient of 3 x 10-3. The specific storage of the Minnelusa confining bed was 2 x 10-7 per foot, and its vertical hydraulic conductivity was 0.3 foot per day. The transmissivity of the Madison aquifer at this site was 17,000 feet squared per day, and the storage coefficient was 2 x 10-3.

The second aquifer test, which was conducted at Rapid City production well #5 (RC-5) produced measured drawdown only in the Madison aquifer. Hantush and Jacob's method of determining the hydraulic properties of leaky confined aquifers with no storage in the confining bed was used to evaluate the aquifer-test data by assuming the fracture and solution-opening network is equivalent to a porous media. The analysis of data from the RC-5 aquifer test showed that transmissivity was not equal in all directions. Hantush's method was used to determine the direction of radial anisotropy and magnitude of the major and minor axes of transmissivity. The major axis of transmissivity is at an angle of 42 east of north, and the transmissivity along this axis is about 56,000 feet squared per day. The minor axis of transmissivity is at an angle of 48 west of north, and the transmissivity along this axis is about 1,300 feet squared per day. The major axis of transmissivity intersects Cleghorn Springs, a large resurgent spring on the west edge of Rapid City. The shape of the potentiometric contours of the Madison aquifer near RC-5 agree with the orientation of the transmissivity ellipse. The average value of the storage coefficient from the isotropic analysis of the aquifer-test data was 3.5 x 10-4, and the average vertical hydraulic conductivity of the lower Minnelusa confining bed was 9.6 x 10-3 foot per day.

Contents

Abstract

Introduction

Purpose and scope

Previous investigations

Acknowledgments

Hydrogeology

Geologic setting

Minnelusa aquifer

Madison aquifer

Data-collection sites (wells) and study methods

Description of wells

Aquifer tests

Geophysical logging

Hydraulic properties of the Madison aquifer system

Porosity

Minnelusa aquifer and confining bed

Madison aquifer

Transmissivity and storage coefficient

Well RC-6

Drawdown corrections

Analytical model, assumptions, and boundary conditions

Well RC-5

Drawdown corrections

Analytical model, assumptions, and boundary conditions

Anisotropic analysis

Summary and conclusions

References

Supplemental data



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