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Regional Ground-Water-Flow Models of Surficial Sand and Gravel Aquifers Along the Mississippi River Between Brainerd and St. Cloud, Central Minnesota

By J.F. Ruhl, and T.K. Cowdery

U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY
Scientific Investigations Report 2004-5087

Prepared in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Health

This report is also available as a pdf.


Abstract

This report documents regional ground-waterflow models constructed by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to satisfy the requirements of their Source Water Protection Plan (SWPP). Steady-state single-layer ground-water-flow models were constructed with the computer program MODFLOW to simulate flow in surficial sand and gravel aquifers along the Mississippi River between Brainerd and St. Cloud in central Minnesota. The hydrogeologic data that were used to construct the models were compiled from available sources.

Calibrated values of horizontal hydraulic conductivity and areal recharge for the aquifer in a northern model area were 70 m/d and 3.0x10-4 m/d, respectively. This model was sensitive to net areal recharge, vertical hydraulic conductivity of perennial streambed sediments, and horizontal hydraulic conductivity. The major source of net inflow to the model was from edge boundary cells. The major source of net outflow was ground-water discharge to perennial and ephemeral streams.

Calibrated values of horizontal hydraulic conductivity and areal recharge for the aquifer in a southern model area were 70 m/d and 6.0x10-4 m/d, respectively. This model was sensitive mostly to horizontal hydraulic conductivity. Net areal recharge and ground-water discharge to perennial streams were the major sources of net inflow and outflow, respectively.

Contents

Abstract

Introduction

Purpose and Scope

Hydrogeologic Setting

Ground-Water Flow Models

Numerical Model Description and Assumptions

Model Input

Model Calibration, Sensitivity, and Results

Northern Study Area

Southern Study Area

Model limitations

Summary

Acknowledgments

References

Suggested Citation:

Ruhl, J.F., and Cowdery, T.K., 2004, Regional ground-water-flow models of surficial sand and gravel aquifers along the Mississsippi River between Brainerd and St. Cloud, central Minnesota: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2004-5087, 21 p.


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For more information about USGS activities in Minnesota, visit the USGS Minnesota District home page.




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