Ground structures and groundwater behaviour are critical controls on many schemes. The hydrogeology can influence stability (temporary and long-term), contamination migration and exploitation of water, oil and other minerals.
ESP has carried out hydrogeological assessments in a wide variety of geological environments. This requires an in depth knowledge of the geological conditions and groundwater regime, as well as the project objectives and requirements of the client and is provided by our team of hydrogeologists and engineers.
Desk based research of existing information held by bodies such as the British Geological Survey, Natural Resources Wales and the Environment Agency is carried out, followed by on site investigations and monitoring, including variable head, constant head and other testing procedures in accordance with BS EN ISO 22282. Information is analysed and interpreted by our experienced staff.
The natural world is complex and analytical solutions have to be tested against real-world conditions. Failure to do so can put feasibility and safety at risk.
Examples of ESP hydrogeology experience includes:
- Stability assessments of colliery spoil and refuse tips in the mountainous Welsh Coalfield.
- Stability design of opencast coal sites throughout the UK.
- Stability assessments for a proposed large road embankment where groundwater was present at the surface within underlying peat and clay deposits;
- Management of water resources in arid regions.
- Detailed hydrogeological and multi-technique infiltration/permeability testing for Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS).
- Geochemical attack on construction materials in the UK and Middle East.
- Hydrogeological assessment for coastal landfill to inform contaminant migration and viable pollutant linkages.
- Solving quarrying problems at minimum cost and disruption to the operator. Assisting in deepening, extensions, stability assessments and environmental impact assessments.
- Management of complex groundwater conditions, notably artesian groundwater conditions whilst cutting into the hillside of a Welsh valley. These conditions had the potential to cause catastrophic failure during construction and completion of the development. An understanding of hydrogeological system for the site was required and appropriate mitigation measures were designed.
Project Example: Hydrogeology and SuDS Assessment, Rhoose
As part of the redevelopment of a greenfield site, ESP undertook assessments for a planned large residential development in Rhoose. Based on a detailed understanding of the hydrogeology and multi-technique infiltration/permeability testing for Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) the feasibility of soakaway drainage was demonstrated within the Porthkerry Member bedrock.
Project Example: Hydrogeological assessment for the regeneration of the Coed Ely area
A detailed appreciation of aquifer geometry across the valley was required in order to understand the artesian groundwater pressures that occurred on the site. Predictions on the expected groundwater responses and variations in the pressure gradient as the development progressed were also provided.
This involved the use of quantitative modelling as a means to best understand and predict the aquifer behaviour.
A selected list of example projects can be found on our Projects and Technical page.