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The Effects of Longwall Coal Mining on the Hydrogeology of Southwestern Pennsylvania

Witkowski, Megan Nicole (2011) The Effects of Longwall Coal Mining on the Hydrogeology of Southwestern Pennsylvania. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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THE EFFECTS OF LONGWALL COAL MINING ON THE HYDROGEOLOGY OF SOUTHWESTERN PENNSYLVANIA Megan N. Witkowski, E.I.T.University of Pittsburgh, 2010The purpose of this study is to investigate the susceptibility characteristics of domestic and agricultural water supplies that may be vulnerable to diminution or total loss in supply when active longwall mining is in the vicinity of the potable aquifer systems of Southwestern, Pennsylvania. Susceptibility characteristics include hydrogeologic setting, proximal location to mining, and climatic conditions at the time of impact. The investigation serves the purpose of enhancing our understanding and will aid in predicting potential impacts during future undermining of water sources such as wells and springs. The investigation will demonstrate an understanding of the pre and post-mining behavior of hydrologic systems by considering the relationship between the geologic and mining characteristics. Geologic characteristics include overburden composition and geomorphology of the surface. Mining characteristics include mining method, overburden depth, extraction thickness, etc. The study focuses on water supplies in Greene and Washington Counties with reported losses or reductions in supply that were attributed to the seven active longwall mines in operation between 2003 and 2008. The undermined water supplies represent a variety of hydrogeologic settings and mining conditions prevalent in the Southwestern Pennsylvania longwall coalfield. The knowledge gained from this analysis can be used to more adequately plan for potential disruptions in water supplies subjected to longwall coal mining and the local conditions that may better predict the vulnerability of water supplies to interruption or loss of the supply.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Witkowski, Megan Nicolemnw12@pitt.eduMNW12
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairIannacchione, Anthony Tati2@pitt.eduATI2
Committee MemberVallejo, Luis Evallejo@civ.pitt.eduVALLEJO
Committee MemberLiang, Xuxuliang@pitt.eduXULIANG
Date: 26 January 2011
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 18 November 2010
Approval Date: 26 January 2011
Submission Date: 30 November 2010
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Swanson School of Engineering > Civil and Environmental Engineering
Degree: MSCE - Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: geology; hydorology; northern appalachian coal field; underground bituminous coal mining
Other ID:, etd-11302010-125737
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 20:07
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:52


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