ASTM D5881 - 18

    Standard Practice for (Analytical Procedure) Determining Transmissivity of Confined Nonleaky Aquifers by Critically Damped Well Response to Instantaneous Change in Head (Slug)

    Active Standard ASTM D5881 | Developed by Subcommittee: D18.21

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.09


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    Significance and Use

    6.1 The assumptions of the physical system are given as follows:

    6.1.1 The aquifer is of uniform thickness, with impermeable upper and lower confining boundaries.

    6.1.2 The aquifer is of constant homogeneous porosity and matrix compressibility and constant homogeneous and isotropic hydraulic conductivity.

    6.1.3 The origin of the cylindrical coordinate system is taken to be on the well-bore axis at the top of the aquifer.

    6.1.4 The aquifer is fully screened.

    6.1.5 The well is 100 % efficient, that is, the skin factor, f, and dimensionless skin factor, σ, are zero.

    6.2 The assumptions made in defining the momentum balance are as follows:

    6.2.1 The average water velocity in the well is approximately constant over the well-bore section.

    6.2.2 Frictional head losses from flow in the well are negligible.

    6.2.3 Flow through the well screen is uniformly distributed over the entire aquifer thickness.

    6.2.4 Change in momentum from the water velocity changing from radial flow through the screen to vertical flow in the well are negligible.

    Note 1: The function of wells in any unconfined setting in a fractured terrain might make the determination of k problematic because the wells might only intersect tributary or subsidiary channels or conduits. The problems determining the k of a channel or conduit notwithstanding, the partial penetration of tributary channels may make a determination of a meaningful number difficult. If plots of k in carbonates and other fractured settings are made and compared, they may show no indication that there are conduits or channels present, except when with the lowest probability one maybe intersected by a borehole and can be verified, such problems are described by (5) Smart (1999). Additional guidance can be found in Guide D5717.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice covers determination of transmissivity from the measurement of water-level response to a sudden change of water level in a well-aquifer system characterized as being critically damped or in the transition range from underdamped to overdamped. Underdamped response is characterized by oscillatory changes in water level; overdamped response is characterized by return of the water level to the initial static level in an approximately exponential manner. Overdamped response is covered in Guide D4043; underdamped response is covered in D5785/D5785M, D4043.

    1.2 The analytical procedure in this practice is used in conjunction with Guide D4043 and the field procedure in Test Method D4044/D4044M for collection of test data.

    1.3 Limitations—Slug tests are considered to provide an estimate of the transmissivity of an aquifer near the well screen. The method is applicable for systems in which the damping parameter, ζ, is within the range from 0.2 through 5.0. The assumptions of the method prescribe a fully penetrating well (a well open through the full thickness of the aquifer) in a confined, nonleaky aquifer.

    1.4 All observed and calculated values shall conform to the guidelines for significant digits and rounding established in Practice D6026.

    1.4.1 The procedures used to specify how data are collected/recorded and calculated in this standard are regarded as the industry standard. In addition, they are representative of the significant digits that should generally be retained. The procedures used do not consider material variation, purpose for obtaining the data, special purpose studies, or any considerations for the user’s objectives; and it is common practice to increase or reduce significant digits of reported data to commensurate with these considerations. It is beyond the scope of this standard to consider significant digits used in analysis methods for engineering design.

    1.5 Units—The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard. Reporting of test results in units other than SI shall not be regarded as nonconformance with this standard.

    1.6 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 the 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 the 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 he ASTM consensus process.

    1.7 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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    1.8 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.


    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

    D4043 Guide for Selection of Aquifer Test Method in Determining Hydraulic Properties by Well Techniques

    D4044/D4044M Test Method for (Field Procedure) for Instantaneous Change in Head (Slug) Tests for Determining Hydraulic Properties of Aquifers

    D5717 Guide for Design of Ground-Water Monitoring Systems in Karst and Fractured-Rock Aquifers

    D5785/D5785M Test Method for (Analytical Procedure) for Determining Transmissivity of Confined Nonleaky Aquifers by Underdamped Well Response to Instantaneous Change in Head (Slug Test)

    D6026 Practice for Using Significant Digits in Geotechnical Data


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 07.060 (Geology. Meteorology. Hydrology)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    Referencing This Standard
    Link Here
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    DOI: 10.1520/D5881-18

    Citation Format

    ASTM D5881-18, Standard Practice for (Analytical Procedure) Determining Transmissivity of Confined Nonleaky Aquifers by Critically Damped Well Response to Instantaneous Change in Head (Slug), ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2018, www.astm.org

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