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Monitoring Hydrology in Created Wetland Systems with Clayey Soils
Troyer, Nicole Loraine
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This research project evaluated the overall hydroperiod and effects of monitoring well design parameters on observed levels of saturation in created wetlands with high-clay subsoils at the Cedar Run 3 mitigation bank site in Prince William County, Virginia. Three complete replications of an electronic central array and an associated surrounding array of manually monitored wells and piezometers were installed. The electronic arrays contained a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE) standard monitoring well, as well as piezometers and tensiometers at three depths. The manually monitored well + piezometer arrays (3 per location; 9 total) consisted of 12 variants of screen types and filter pack materials, well diameter, and unlined bore holes. The site exhibited a complex seasonal hydroperiod ranging from ponded winter conditions to deep (< -50 cm) summer dry down. The site also exhibited epiaquic (perched) conditions following summer and fall precipitation events. Apparent water levels in deep (> 1 m) piezometers exhibited an unusual hydroperiod with highest levels in summer. Differences in well/piezometer diameter, design, and packing texture/fit produced surprisingly different apparent water levels that varied from ~ 4 to over 28 cm during both the winter ponded periods and summer subsoil water table flux periods. Thus, one important finding is that relatively simple differences in well designs can have dramatic effects on observed water levels. Overall, the standard USACOE appeared to be relatively accurate for predicting saturation levels during ponded periods, but nested piezometers are preferred and more accurate for the drier summer and fall.
- Masters Theses