My Current Research
My interests span the fields of hydrogeology and geochemistry and emphasize problems in groundwater and surface water chemistry. My background includes both research and professional experience in these areas, and has helped shape the field-oriented program I've developed. KU's unique online/on-campus programs allow me to maintain a broad set of research interests with students from a wide range of backgrounds and experience ( My Research with Graduate and Undergraduate Students). Some recent research includes:
Characterizing the migration of leachate at a landfill in Khon Kaen, Thailand
Direct-push Technology Development and Application
Over the years, my students and I have developed new approaches for high-resolution characterization of unconsolidated aquifers, based largely on direct-push technology. The approach provides details about the stratigraphic controls on groundwater flow and solute transport at a scale of measurement that is not possible with conventional drilling-based methods. Ongoing research in alluvial aquifers demonstrates the capabilities of our approaches, and includes examination of recharge at floodplain-terrace and at stream-aquifer interfaces. The new tools are extremely relevant for environmental site characterization projects and the design of remediation strategies at contaminated sites. Recently, we have used direct-push tools to conduct a tracer test at a uranium-contaminated, DOE site and at a large municipal landfill site.
Hydrogeochemistry of Artificial Recharge and Recovery Systems
Artificial groundwater storage and recovery (ASR) holds great potential for groundwater management . Our group has contributed geochemical expertise to the design and maintainance of large-scale ASR systems in Wichita KS, and in central Thailand.
Sampling for Pb, Zn, and Cd in streams and groundwater along Tar Creek in Oklahoma.
The chemical signature of groundwater can be used to explain both natural geologic and environmental processes. We have used water chemistry to identify stream-aquifer processes and the source of rare artesian waters. We have also conducted evaluations of the sources and fate of contaminant metals in groundwater and sediments at former mining sites, landfills, and in reservoir sediments, in deep injection sites.
Geochemistry and Hydrogeophysics
Electrical imaging tools provide a non-invasive method of examining soil and aquifer conditions. Our group has combined geophysics and geochemistry in analyses of urban salinity, contaminant migration, and the identification of karst controls on groundwater movement.