Bayesian Chance-Constrained Hydraulic Barrier Design under Geological Structure Uncertainty

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The groundwater community has widely recognized geological structure uncertainty as a major source of model structure uncertainty. Previous studies in aquifer remediation design, however, rarely discuss the impact of geological structure uncertainty. This study combines chance-constrained (CC) programming with Bayesian model averaging (BMA) as a BMA-CC framework to assess the impact of geological structure uncertainty in remediation design. To pursue this goal, the BMA-CC method is compared with traditional CC programming that only considers model parameter uncertainty. The BMA-CC method is employed to design a hydraulic barrier to protect public supply wells of the Government St. pump station from salt water intrusion in the "1500-foot" sand and the "1700-foot" sand of the Baton Rouge area, southeastern Louisiana. To address geological structure uncertainty, three groundwater models based on three different hydrostratigraphic architectures are developed. The results show that using traditional CC programming overestimates design reliability. The results also show that at least five additional connector wells are needed to achieve more than 90% design reliability level. The total amount of injected water from the connector wells is higher than the total pumpage of the protected public supply wells. While reducing the injection rate can be achieved by reducing the reliability level, the study finds that the hydraulic barrier design to protect the Government St. pump station may not be economically attractive.

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Ground water

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