Geology 001                                                                                        West Valley College

Physical Geology                                                                                  Fall 2000


Study Questions 18: Groundwater


1)      What is Groundwater and how are porosity and permeability related to the flow of groundwater?

2)      Porous rocks are said to _______?  Permeable rocks are said to __________?  Impermeable rock does __________________?

3)      Is groundwater more or less abundant than water in lakes? _________

4)      Is groundwater more or less abundant than water in rivers? __________

5)      Is groundwater more or less abundant than water in lakes and rivers combined? ___________?

6)      Sketch where groundwater exists.  Include the saturated zone, the vadose zone, water table, capillary fringe, and perched water table.


(Sketch Here)






7)      Define all the terms listed in question 6.

8)      What factors govern the movement of groundwater in the subsurface?

9)      What is permeability?

10)  What is hydraulic head?

11)  What is an aquifer, aquitard, unconfined aquifer, and confined aquifer?

12)  What types of rocks make the best aquifers?

13)  Why are aquifers important to people?

14)  What is recharge when discussing groundwater?

15)  Is the groundwater in confined aquifers young or old?  Is the recharge rate fast or slow?  If fast, how fast?  If slow, how slow?

16)  What are wells?  What is an artesian well?  What is a cone of depression? And what does drawdown mean?

17)  When and where do springs form?

18)  What problem results from withdrawing (pumping) too much water from an aquifer?

19)  What is subsidence?  What happens during subsidence in the aquifer?  What happens during subsidence on the ground surface?

20)  What is karst topography?

21)  What are sinkholes, solution valleys, solution cavities, stalactites, stalagmites, and disappearing streams?

22)  What reactions occur to dissolve carbonate rock?

23)  Name some pollutants in groundwater.

24)  What is salt water intrusion?  Is this a natural contaminant to groundwater?