Alternative Methods for Representing Sinkholes in Three-Dimensional Ground Water Flow Models

by Mark D. Taylor, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Atlanta, GA, USA,
Peter J. Riordan, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Atlanta, GA, USA,
Brendan M. Harley, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Atlanta, GA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


Two methods of representing the sinkholes in central Florida were investigated with a three-dimensional finite element model recently developed by Camp Dresser & McKee Inc. Both methods proved successful in fulfilling their objectives. The first method was through the use of a one-dimensional element linking the confined Floridan aquifer with the unconfined surficial aquifer at the center of each sinkhole. The second method of sinkhole representation was through the normal definition of three-dimensional elements outlining each sinkhole, except that a 'pond' scheme was added to those elements to take into account the surface water aspects of the sinkhole lakes. This method was used in a site specific model where surficial water levels and lake elevations were of concern. This method of sinkhole representation allowed for a detailed analysis of surficial aquifer water level fluctuations around the sinkhole lakes.

Subject Headings: Three-dimensional models | Three-dimensional flow | Groundwater flow | Lakes | Sinkholes | Water flow | Hydrologic models | Water resources | Florida | United States

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