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Karst Groundwater Hydrologic Analyses Based on Aerial ThermographyOn February 23, 1999, thermal imagery of Marshall Space Flight Center, Alabama was collected using an airborne thermal camera. Ground resolution was I in. Approximately 40 km 2 of thermal imagery in and around Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) was analyzed to determine the location of springs for groundwater monitoring. Subsequently, forty-five springs were located ranging in flow from a few ml/sec to approximately 280 liter/sec. Groundwater temperatures are usually near the mean annual surface air temperature. On thermography collected during the winter, springs show up as very warm spots. Many of the new springs were submerged in lakes, streams, or swamps; consequently, flow measurements were difficult. Without estimates of discharge, the impacts of contaminated discharge on surface streams would be difficult to evaluate. An approach to obtaining an estimate was developed using the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Cornell Mixing Zone Expert System (CORMIX). The thermography was queried to obtain a temperature profile down the center of the surface plume. The spring discharge was modeled with CORMIX, and the flow adjusted until the surface temperature profile was matched. The presence of volatile compounds in some of the new springs also allowed MSFC to unravel the natural system of solution cavities of the karst aquifer. Sampling results also showed that two springs on either side of a large creek had the same water source so that groundwater was able to pass beneath the creek.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Marshall Space Flight Center
Document Type
Campbell, C. Warren
(JAYA Corp. Huntsville, AL United States)
Keith, A. G.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2000
Subject Category
Earth Resources And Remote Sensing
Meeting Information
Meeting: 2000 Annual Meeting and International Conference of American Institute of Hydrology
Location: Research Triangle Park, NC
Country: United States
Start Date: November 5, 2000
End Date: November 8, 2000
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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