ASTM D5254 / D5254M - 92(2010)e1

    Standard Practice for Minimum Set of Data Elements to Identify a Groundwater Site

    Active Standard ASTM D5254 / D5254M | Developed by Subcommittee: D18.21

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.08


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    Significance and Use

    Normally, the basic groundwater data are gathered by trained personnel during the field investigation phase of a study. Each agency or company has its own methods of obtaining, recording, and storing the information. Usually, these data are recorded onto forms that serve both in organizing the information in the field and the office, and many times as entry forms for a computer data base. For groundwater data to be of maximum value to the current project and any future studies, it is essential that a minimum set of key data elements be recorded for each site. The data elements presented in this practice do not uniquely imply a computer data base, but rather the minimum set of groundwater data elements that should be collected for entry into any type of permanent file.

    When obtaining basic data concerning a groundwater site, it is necessary to identify thoroughly that site so that it may be readily field located again with minimal uncertainty and that it may be accurately plotted and interpreted for data parameters in relationship to other sites. For example, information can be presented on scientific maps and in summary tables.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice covers what information should be obtained for any individual groundwater site, also known as monitoring location or sampling station. As used in this practice, a site is meant to be a single point, not a geographic area or property. A groundwater site is defined as any source, location, or sampling station capable of producing water or hydrologic data from a natural stratum from below the surface of the earth. A source or facility can include a well, spring or seep, and drain or tunnel (nearly horizontal in orientation). Other sources, such as excavations, driven devices, bore holes, ponds, lakes, and sinkholes, that can be shown to be hydraulically connected to the groundwater, are appropriate for the use intended (see 6.4.2.3).

    Note 1—There are many additional data elements that may be necessary to identify a site, but are not included in the minimum set of data elements. An agency or company may require additional data elements as a part of their minimum set.

    1.2 This practice includes those data elements that will distinguish a site as to its geographical location on the surface of the earth, political regimes, source identifiers, and individual site characteristics. These elements apply to all groundwater sites. Each category of site, such as a well or spring, may individually require additional data elements to be complete. Many of the suggested components and representative codes for coded data elements are those established by the Water Resources Division of the U.S. Geological Survey and used in the National Water Information Systems computerized data base (1).

    Note 2—The data elements presented in this practice do not uniquely imply a computer data base, but rather the minimum set of groundwater data elements that should be collected for entry into any type of permanent file.

    1.3 The values stated in either SI units or inch-pound units [presented in brackets] are to be regarded separately as standard. The values stated in each system may not be exact equivalents; therefore, each system shall be used independently of the other. Combining values from the two systems may result in non-conformance with the standard.

    1.3.1 The gravitational system of inch-pound units is used when dealing with inch-pound units. In this system, the pound (lbf) represents a unit of force (weight), while the unit for mass is slugs. The rationalized slug unit is not given, unless dynamic (F = ma) calculations are involved.

    1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    1.5 This practice offers a set of instructions for performing one or more specific operations. This document cannot replace education or experience and should be used in conjunction with professional judgment. Not all aspects of this practice may be applicable in all circumstances. This ASTM standard is not intended to represent or replace the standard of care by which the adequacy of a given professional service must be judged, nor should this document be applied without consideration of a project's many unique aspects. The word Standard in the title of this document means only that the document has been approved through the ASTM consensus process.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D653 Terminology Relating to Soil, Rock, and Contained Fluids


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.060.10 (Water of natural resources)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/D5254_D5254M-92R10E01

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