Project Title: Geologic Controls on Groundwater Flows and Associated Nutrient Biogeochemistry in the Subterranean Estuary and Groundwater Seepage Face
Mendenhall Fellow: Kevin D. Kroeger, (727) 803-8747, Kevin D. Kroeger, 727-803-8747, firstname.lastname@example.org
Duty Station: Saint Petersburg, FL
Start Date: November 28, 2004
Education: M.S., Oceanography, University of Connecticut (1997), Ph.D. Marine Biogoechemistry, Boston University (2003)
Research Advisors: Peter Swarzenski, (727) 803-8747, ext. 3072, email@example.com; Mark Stewart (University of South Florida), (813) 974-8749, firstname.lastname@example.org; Dann Yobbi, (813) 884-9336 ext. 164, email@example.com
Project Description: Along much of the east and Gulf coasts of the United States, groundwater is a major route of transport of freshwater and its solutes from land to sea. Sources, transformations and losses of nitrogen and phosphorous within watersheds have been intensively studied, and although uncertainties remain, those processes are understood well enough to allow development of models to predict groundwater nutrient loads to receiving waters. However, groundwater flows and associated nutrient cycling within the near shore aquifer has received relatively little study and is poorly known. Prior to discharge to estuaries or to the sea, groundwater discharging from aquifers passes through a narrow zone of sediment referred to as the seepage face and ranging in location from just above the intertidal zone to the shallow subtidal. In many locations, entrainment of saline porewater occurs prior to discharge producing a gradient in groundwater salinity from land to sea, referred to as a subterranean estuary. With regard to the study of groundwater flows and nutrient cycling, the seepage face and subterranean estuary are relatively new and under-studied biogeochemical zones in the aquatic cascade from watershed to sea.
The objectives of this project are to examine groundwater flow, nutrient transport and biogeochemistry in nearshore portions of two coastal aquifers of contrasting geological composition. To allow direct comparison of geologic control of coastal groundwater flow and geochemistry, the research will be carried out both at a study site in Florida with a karstic limestone aquifer and carbonate estuarine sediments and at a study site on Cape Cod, Massachusetts with an aquifer composed of quartz and feldspar sands and siliciclastic estuarine sediments.
The proposed research will:
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Last modified: 16:08:29 Thu 13 Dec 2012