hydrogeology

David R. Wunsch appointed DGS Director

After a nationwide search, David R. Wunsch has been appointed the next Director of the Delaware Geological Survey (DGS) and Delaware State Geologist, effective Nov. 1. He will succeed John H. Talley, who retired on June 30 after more than 38 years of service. Wunsch holds a doctorate in hydrogeology from the University of Kentucky, a master’s degree in geology from the University of Akron, and a bachelor’s degree in geology, with a minor in chemistry, from the State University of New York, Oneonta. In 2011, Wunsch was elected a Fellow of the Geological Society of America. He is an Honorary Member and a past President of the Association of American State Geologists (AASG) and has previously served a term as Secretary of the American Geological Institute.

Wunsch to take helm at DGS

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David R. Wunsch has been appointed the next Director of the Delaware Geological Survey (DGS) and Delaware State Geologist, effective Nov. 1.

Source Water Assessment and Protection Program

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Two Delaware Geological Survey staff members attended the Source Water Assessment and Protection Program meeting held Sept. 14 in Dover, Del. Scott Andres made a presentation titled "Results of Field and Lab Experiments on High Rate Land Application of Wastewater" and John Callahan made a presentation titled "Web-Delivered Application for Hydrogeologic Data."

DGS honors retiring director, state geologist Talley

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John Talley joined the Delaware Geological Survey as a project geologist in 1972, became a senior scientist and hydrogeologist by 1986, and rose to director and state geologist by 2004. He’s consulted with dozens of university, state, and federal governments and groups and amassed a list of more than 50 publications and reports.

The Delaware Water Conditions Summary

The Water Conditions Summary is an online monthly summary of water conditions in Delaware. Principal factors in determining water conditions are precipitation, streamflow, and groundwater levels in aquifers. Data from rain gages, stream gages, and observation wells located throughout Delaware have been collected and compiled since the 1960s by the Delaware Geological Survey. These data are displayed as hydrographs and are also available for download. In general, water is abundant in Delaware, but supply is restricted by natural geologic conditions in some areas, by contamination in others, and is dependent on precipitation.

IS7 The Delaware Geological Survey

IS7 is a foldout brochure that briefly discusses the background and current activities of the DGS. Specifically, the following major programs are listed: Geology, Hydrology, Cartographic Information, Geologic Hazards, Seismograph Network, Outer Continental Shelf, Mineral Resources, Well Records and Sample Library, Publications, and Joint-funded Programs.

Temporal Imaging of the Intertidal Critical Zone

Project Contact(s)

We are developing an innovative ground-based imaging system to collect multi-spectral imagery (visible, near and thermal infrared bands) at time-scales (minutes/hours) below those of the dominant processes in intertidal environments (semi-diurnal tides, day/night). A modular system based on mature imaging technology is being assembled for science missions by foot, boat, truck, tower, and lift. This project consists of some critical laboratory studies to test our conceptual framework.

Scientists study flow of groundwater into bays - results may help track pollution

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Scientists study flow of groundwater into bays. Results may help track pollution.

On a small, homemade barge, built from the skeleton of an old ship, a gray slurry of bay bottom sand flows out of a pipe into a bucket. Two scientists, a well driller and two student interns drill a hole in the floor of the Indian River Bay. They’ll install a very long pipe into the hole and use it to monitor groundwater – how much flows into the bay, how salty it is and how many nutrients it carries with it.

Web-Delivered Application for Hydrogeologic Data

Project Contact(s)

This project is designed to deliver, by web-based technologies, the most commonly available and requested geologic and hydrologic information used in hydrologic studies required by regulation and ordinance and used by state agencies to support resource-management decisions. Available information can be associated with points or areas. Information associated with points includes descriptive logs, geophysical logs, raw and interpreted groundwater levels, aquifer and geologic unit identification, and hydraulic characteristics of wells. Information associated with areas is either in the form of raster-based (grid) data or polygons. Examples of raster-based data include water-table depths and elevations, tops and thicknesses of geologic and aquifer units, and aquifer transmissivity. Examples of polygons include surficial geology and groundwater recharge potential.

The intent of developing a web-technology enabled system is to provide a more intuitive and comprehensive toolset for locating, quickly viewing, and downloading the desired information in an efficient, extensible, and familiar manner.

Quantifying Geologic and Temporal Controls on Water and Chemical Exchange between Groundwater and Surface Water in Coastal Estuarine Systems

Project Contact(s)

Eutrophication is one of the most common and most severe problems facing coastal bays in
populated and agricultural areas. Unnaturally high quantities of nutrients enter fresh groundwater and surface water as a result of human activities. These nutrients contribute to the overpopulation of phytoplankton and macroalgae in coastal surface waters, which results in deterioration of water quality and animal habitat. This is a particular problem in the Delmarva region, where poultry farms, agricultural activity, and growing human populations have contributed to rapidly declining populations of blue crabs, striped bass, and many other species which live and breed in estuarine waters. The economic value of these species has, in part, prompted political action and efforts to manage nutrient inputs to groundwater and surface water, the primary pathways for nutrient loading to coastal waters. Despite significant reductions, coastal water quality has largely remained poor. A better understanding of the processes that moderate nutrient loading to coastal waters, particularly via groundwater, which is much more difficult to monitor than surface water inputs, is essential for improved management methods that will result in healthy coastal ecosystems. This project will improve understanding of where nutrients are coming from and how loading may be reduced, and may aid in identification of activities that exacerbate negative impacts.