Qualitative and Quantitative Hydrogeology

The necessity for the optimal production of the water sources requires a continuous focused effort in defining the natural systems and determining their limitations. This activity, which is coordinated with the Water Commission, the Ministry of the Environment, and other bodies, the Geological Survey of Israel is furthering the examination of primary and secondary groundwater systems integrated with issues such as monitoring the quality of the water and the re-use of purified sewage. The main projects include:

- Feasibility of hydrological planning based mainly on exploitation of groundwater from the existing store in the deep aquifers. Exploiting such a store is likely to aid in bridging the shortage of available water in the existing systems, until additional water is either imported or derived from desalination. This requires the development of a a quantitative simulation for groundwater flow based on various geological, geophysical and hydrogeological data.

- Hydrogeological structure and mutual relations between floodwaters and groundwater in the aquifers related to the Arava and the Karkom graben. This involves a series of studies funded by the Water Commission and the Ministry of Science to help in quantifying the sources of water in these arid sites.

- Defining the processes occurring close to the sweater/freshwater interface in the coastal aquifer. One study, which is being initially funded a research grant and its continuation by the Water Commission, focuses on the nature and penetration rate of the interface by sampling and the use of a controlled chemical tracer, including dating by carbon 14. A second project that is being carried out in conjunction with the Geophysical Institute, funded by the Water Commission, is examining the composition of the water in the deep parts of the coastal aquifer by geophysical methods.

- Developing a 3-dimensional hydrogeological model for flow and transport of solubles in the Yarqon-Taninim aquifer. This involves a study of the hydrostratigraphy, and a detailed geochemical study on particular components, including radioactive elements.

- Examination of the processes causing a decrease in the production from deep drill-holes. The project deals with clarifying the reasons causing mineralization that gradually blocks the filters in the drillholes. This study is being carried out jointly with the Mekorot Company (and funded by it).

- The groundwater system in relation to the collapse of the infrastructure near the Dead Sea. This project is funded by several government ministries, and focuses on clarifying the interrelations between groundwater and the formation of sinkholes. It examines the possibility of constraining the development of the sinkholes by hydrological measures and turning the water produced to regional needs.

- Hydrogeology of the Upper Galilee and the basalt aquifer in the Golan. This involves two projects funded by the Water Commission, both involving the development of conceptual models.

- Groundwater contamination of the Gulf of Elat. The project is part of a broad government effort to study problems of the gulf. The work includes sampling of shallow groundwater, drilling several exploratory wells, and an attempt to quantify the potential flow of contaminants into the gulf.