Optimal operation of artificial groundwater recharge systems considering water quality transformations

Muzaffar M. Eusuff, Kevin E. Lansey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


In water limited areas as water demand increases alternative sustainable water sources must be identified. One supply augmentation practice, that is already being applied in the arid southwest U.S., is artificial groundwater recharge using wastewater effluent. The objective of a recharge facility is to supplement the available groundwater resources by storing water for the future. The resulting reclaimed water is used primarily for non-potable purposes but under increasing stresses shifting to potable use is likely to happen. Water quality then becomes a more pressing concern. Water quality improvements during infiltration and groundwater transport are significant and are collectively described as soil-aquifer treatment (SAT). To meet user needs, the recharge operation must be efficiently managed considering monetary, water quality and environmental concerns. In this paper, a SAT management model is developed that considers all of these concerns. Within the SAT management model, the shuffled complex evolution n algorithm (SCE) is used as the optimization tool. SCE is a relatively new meta-heuristic search technique for continuous problems that has been used extensively for hydrologic model calibration. In this application, SCE is integrated with the simulation models (MODFLOW, MT3D, and MODPATH) to represent movement and quality transformations. Two steady state case studies on a general hypothetical aquifer (modeled after a field site) were examined using the management model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)379-405
Number of pages27
JournalWater Resources Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2004


  • Artificial recharge
  • Groundwater optimization
  • Reuse
  • Water quality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology


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