Science Service System

Summary of Proposal HYD2810

TitleLand subsidence as inferred from TerraSAR-X data due to groundwater extraction
Investigator Chen, Jingyi - Stanford University, Geophysics
Team Member
Professor Zebker, Howard - Stanford University, Geophysics
Professor Knight, Rosemary - Stanford University, Geophysics
SummaryFunding: All students are on Stanford fellowships and our team are supplementing this project with a NASA contract. Throughout the world water managers at all levels of government are challenged to make decisions that support the long-term sustainability of our water resources. Effective water management must, over the long term, maintain sustainability of groundwater aquifers. In practice this can mean ensuring that the hydraulic head levels in an aquifer do not decline excessively, or ensuring that the amount of water withdrawn over time will not exceed the amount of water entering the aquifer through recharge. In both cases, a measurement of hydraulic head in the aquifer is the critical metric needed to decide on and monitor actions. The central goal of my research is to reconstruct historical hydraulic head levels in confined aquifers. This is commonly the least well-characterized element of the groundwater system due to the lack of spatially dense well measurements. We use Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) data to derive surface subsidence time series, which can be directly related to hydraulic head change in confined aquifers. The resulting temporally and spatially dense InSAR head estimates will then be used to predict future water supply outlooks. This will inform decisions related to the use of groundwater, allowing time to take actions that impact the withdrawal of water from the aquifer or the recharge of the aquifer.

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