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William M. Turner, Ph.D. 


American Ground Water Consultants scientists carried out a Thermonic groundwater- exploration survey of an area near Liberal, Kansas in the American Midwest to locate optimal well sites for a private industrial client.  The location of Liberal, Kansas is shown in Figure 1. 


The project area is in the Anadarko Basin.  The major aquifer in the area is the continental Ogallala Formation of late Tertiary and Quaternary age that unconformably overlies an old erosional surface formed on a thick sequence of Cretaceous and Permian marine sediment.  Well-sorted, high permeability, sand deposits are expected within the paleo-stream channels carved into the underlying rocks.


We obtained Thermonic data from 15, specially constructed, observation holes 50-feet (15 m) deep, four bore holes, and two piezometers.  Fourteen of the observation holes were placed around the periphery of the client's property.  The fifteenth was placed near the center of the property. 


Data obtained in the specially constructed observation holes at a depth of 50 feet (15 m)  beneath the land surface was considered the most reliable.  Data was processed using our proprietary methods to remove the effects of variable thermal properties of the rock.  We used our proprietary "valley mapping function" to interpret the data. We conclude that 

  • Rapidly moving ground water is within paleo-stream channel deposits at the base of the Ogallala Formation.
  • The paleo-stream channel is the zone of highest capacity wells.

Based on the results of the Thermonic survey, five well sites were selected in the paleo-channel.  Each well drilled in our target zone produced in excess of 2,000 gallons per minute (130 l/s).


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