Design and Optimization of Ground‐Water Monitoring Networks for Pollution Studies

H. O. Pfannkuch, B. A. Labno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The successful design and operation of a ground‐water monitoring and surveillance system are based on a stepwide process of obtaining hydrogeologic information. Because of the inherent uncertainty and inhomogeneity of natural hydrogeological systems, the true monitoring network cannot be specified before some basic knowledge about system configuration and dynamics is known. Forethought, planning and incorporation of design criteria as part of the initial phase of project management establishes the monitoring network strategy. Optimization of the monitoring network takes place through the completion of the following five phases: (1) preliminary network design and information gathering, (2) initial installation and testing, (3) completion and verification, (4) operational, and (5) project termination. Experience gained from monitoring the conditions at the University of Minnesota's chemical and special waste disposal site resulted in the design and optimization procedure. Concern for possible ground‐water contamination led to analysis of surface and subsurface, physical and chemical conditions. Subsequently a monitoring system was established to meet project objectives. No degradation of the ground water was found during the five‐year study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)455-462
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1976
Externally publishedYes


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