Articles | Volume 15, issue 5
Research article
13 May 2011
Research article |  | 13 May 2011

Estimations of tidal characteristics and aquifer parameters via tide-induced head changes in coastal observation wells

Y.-J. Chen, G.-Y. Chen, H.-D. Yeh, and D.-S. Jeng

Abstract. The groundwater fluctuations due to tidal variations at an observation well in a coastal aquifer can be used to determine the tidal characteristics and aquifer parameters without conducting an aquifer test. In this study, a method, comprised of Jeng et al.'s solution (2005) and simulated annealing (SA) algorithm, is developed to determine the coastal aquifer parameters (hydraulic diffusivity, beach slope, and aquifer thickness) as well as the tidal characteristics (bichromatic-tide amplitudes, bichromatic-tide wave frequencies, and tidal phase lag) from the analysis of the tide-induced well-water-level (WWL) data. The synthetic WWL data generated from Jeng et al.'s solution (2005) with assumed parameter values and field data obtained from Barrenjoey beach, Australia, are analyzed. The estimated parameter values obtained from analyzing synthetic WWL data by the present method show good agreements with the previously assumed parameter values. The parameter estimation procedure may however fail in the case of a large shallow water parameter which in fact violates the constraint on the use of Jeng et al.'s solution (2005). In the analysis of field WWL data, the results indicate that the aquifer parameters estimated from the present method with single or multiple well data are significantly different from those given in Nielsen (1990). Inspecting the observed WWL data and the WWL data predicted from Jeng et al.'s solution (2005) reveals that the present method may provide better estimations for the aquifer parameters than those given in Nielsen (1990).