Aquifer properties

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Africa Groundwater Atlas >> Resource pages >> Aquifer Properties

Please cite page as: Africa Groundwater Atlas. 2019. Aquifer properties. British Geological Survey. Accessed [date you accessed the information]. Weblink.

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Aquifer properties

Aquifer properties are the hydraulic characteristics of aquifers, which are used to describe an aquifer and understand how groundwater in the aquifer exists and behaves. Aquifer properties are the most important way to describe the hydrogeology of an aquifer.

Key aquifer properties are permeability (or transmissivity); storage; and thickness.

To get reliable information on aquifer properties, aquifer testing must be carried out. Drilling and carrying out controlled test pumping of boreholes allows estimates of aquifer thickness, permeability, transmissivity and storage to be made. Without controlled test pumping, it is not possible to accurately estimate these aquifer properties.

In many parts of Africa, quantitative aquifer properties data are scarce, and surrogate data and information must be used instead in order to characterise aquifers. The most commonly available hydrogeological data are geology; borehole depth; and borehole yield. Geological and borehole yield data have been used to develop the hydrogeology map used in this Atlas.

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