Mechanics of Groundwater in Porous Media  book cover
1st Edition

Mechanics of Groundwater in Porous Media

ISBN 9781138072220
Published March 29, 2017 by CRC Press
280 Pages 131 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Provides a Balance between the Mathematical and Physical Aspects and the Engineering Applications

Written for engineering and science students, Mechanics of Groundwater in Porous Media explains groundwater from both a mathematical and qualitative standpoint. The book builds up the theory of groundwater flow starting from basic physics and geometric intuition, and on to applied practice through real-world engineering problems. It includes graphical illustrations as well as solved illustrative problems throughout the text.

Considers the Steady-State Motion of Groundwater

The book starts off by introducing the overall picture of groundwater, its relationship with the hydrological cycle, and other terminology used in the mechanics of groundwater flow though porous means. It presents a synopsis of basic definitions, concepts, and the fundamental principles of fluid mechanics and soil mechanics, which are necessary prerequisites for an adequate understanding of the book’s core material. The engineering applications are deducted from geometric and physical reasoning, with a minimum use of mathematical abstraction.

Mechanics of Groundwater in Porous Media is written primarily to serve as a textbook for senior undergraduate and upper-level graduate students in civil and environmental engineering, environmental science, hydrogeology, and geology, as well as a resource for practicing engineers.

Table of Contents


Hydrological cycle

Vertical moisture profile

Classification of aquifers

River–aquifer interaction

Homogeneity and isotropy of aquifers

Illustrative problems

Suggested readings


Preliminaries from fluid mechanics

Preliminaries from soil mechanics

Continuum concept of a porous medium

Stagnant groundwater and zero-gradient of piezometric head

Piezometric head in the field

Illustrative problems


Suggested readings

Field equations of flow through a porous medium

Darcy’s law

Conservation of mass, or continuity, equation

Laplace equation

Two-dimensional anisotropic medium and permeability matrix (or tensor)


Suggested readings

Discharge potentials for two-dimensional flows in horizontal, shallow aquifers

Horizontal, shallow, confined (artesian) aquifer

Horizontal, shallow, unconfined (phreatic) aquifer

Horizontal, shallow, partly confined aquifer


Illustrative problems


Suggested readings

Laplace equation, superposition of harmonic functions, and method of images

Some important properties of harmonic functions

Method of images

Method of images for circular boundary

Illustrative problems


Suggested readings

Flow net

Isotropic case

Anisotropic case

Layered heterogeneity

Concluding remarks


Suggested readings

Determination of aquifer characteristics

Determination of transmissivity or coefficient of permeability

Theis equation: Transient radial flow to a well in a confined aquifer

Theis method

Jacob straight-line method

Modification of the Jacob method: Distance–drawdown method

Remarks on the use of the Thiem equation in the case of unsteady flow condition


Suggested readings

Coastal aquifers

Ghyben–Herzberg principle

Strack’s analysis: Instability caused by a fully penetrating well in a shallow coastal aquifer

Suggested readings

Finite element method

Steady-state groundwater flow in a known two-dimensional region

Finite element formulation for the Laplace equation

Suggested readings



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Dr. M. I. Haque currently serves as the professor of engineering and applied science in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at The George Washington University, where he teaches a course on groundwater and seepage. A recipient of graduate degrees in hydraulics and mechanics, he has spent over a period of four decades in research and practice involving water resources engineering, specializing in the field of computational hydraulics and structures, using the finite element method.


"This book will be a useful addition to the professional library of groundwater modellers and hydrogeologists. Its treatment of the mathematics and analysis of groundwater flow is clear and thorough, and it is invaluable in presenting the fundamentals of groundwater flow through porous media in a simple way."
—Martin Preene, Golder Associates

"I am pleased to know about the book. … appears to have been written with a great care and was pleased to see a fresh description and illustration … I found the presentation clear & lucid and also summarised some new points that are not found in related books in this subject."
—Sekhar Muddu, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore