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Introduction to Groundwater

Groundwater is found in aquifers that largely filled after the ice ages.

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Geo-Careers: Hydrogeologist

Geo-Careers: Hydrogeologist

Credit: Paul Clark
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/systemslibrarian/1938712595/
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

Hydrogeologists study groundwater. This is really important because we depend so much on groundwater for drinking, bathing, agriculture - just about everything. At springs, the groundwater flows to the surface.

Why It Matters

  • Hydrogeologists are concerned with the characteristics of a groundwater aquifer. They want to know how the water moves through the aquifer, among other things.
  • The flow paths of groundwater differs greatly in depth, length, and time traveled.
  • Credit: T.C. Winter, J.W. Harvey, O.L. Franke, and W.M. Alley
    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Groundwater_flow.svg
    License: CC BY-NC 3.0

    Groundwater system flow paths [Figure2]

  • Hydrogeologists usually have a strong math background, often with an MS in engineering, math or science.
  • This is an important career because hydrogeologists try to keep our water supply abundant and clean.

Explore More

With the link below, learn more about careers in hydrogeology. Then answer the following questions.

  1. Why is a hydrogeologist consulted before a road is built or a forest is logged, for example?
  2. Why does a hydrogeologist need imagination (in the words of the video)?
  3. What tools does a hydrogeologist use to do her work?
  4. What sort of organization could a hydrogeologist work for?
  5. Why might a hydrogeologist testify at a hearing?

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Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: Paul Clark; Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/systemslibrarian/1938712595/; License: CC BY-NC 3.0
  2. [2]^ Credit: T.C. Winter, J.W. Harvey, O.L. Franke, and W.M. Alley; Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Groundwater_flow.svg; License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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