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Characterization of Hydraulic Conductivity in the Eastern Kentucky Coal Field

Contact: Jim Dinger

The amount of water that can flow through a rock unit (hydraulic conductivity) varies dramatically in eastern Kentucky, making the prediction of groundwater occurrence and movement difficult. This hinders efforts to remove water from mines, prevent landslides caused by leaking coal barriers, predict or track how contaminants are transported, and locate water-supply wells. Various projects at the Kentucky Geological Survey have generated hydraulic conductivity data. Indications are that fractured rock and coal seams are an average of 10 to 100 times more conductive than other rock types. A summary database is not yet developed, but the following references contain appropriate hydraulic conductivity data.

Summary data for the Eastern Kentucky Coal Field can be found in the following publications:

Data for the Appalachian Coal Field in Virginia can be found in: