David P. Ahlfeld
Engineering is the professional art of applying science to the optimum conversion of natural resources to the benefit of man. - Ralph J. Smith Groundwater mining reduces water levels in the subsurface and is found to have grave consequences like natural aquifer depletion. Groundwater management models that couple simulation models with optimization models have been used in the management of groundwater resources. The effect of head dependent boundary conditions on the head response due to pumping stresses is studied along with its impact on management strategies. Hypothetical aquifer models have been set up using MODFLOW 2000 and groundwater management (GWM) package. The drain package and evapotranspiration package that are expected to have head dependent behavior have been analyzed using these models. The head responses to pumping stresses along with the simultaneous effect of the presence of a drain or evapotranspiration process are modeled. Results indicate that a nonlinear head response is obtained whenever the head dependent boundary conditions have a significant impact on the groundwater flow. The head response function may be convex or concave depending on the location of the observation point relative to the pumping well, type of head constraint imposed on the management problem and other aquifer properties. The results from this study may be used to develop management strategies for a variety of aquifer use management problems including design of water supply wells and dewatering problems.