Well Records & Public Service
The Groundwater Information program offers informational services related to groundwater. The program concentrates on public service activities, including dissemination of groundwater information and water quantity and quality technical assistance. More than 3.5 million hydrologic records are on file, including water well construction reports, hydrologic reports, groundwater level data, aquifer properties, and groundwater quality and quantity documents. The Program provides information to engineering firms and individuals via photocopies, computer printouts, and/or verbal or written reports.
Services offered include: well and aquifer production testing; hydrologic analysis of wells and aquifer testing to determine aquifer properties and to evaluate aquifer and well potential yield; well design; technical support to public water-supply facilities or private individuals in regard to groundwater quantity and quality; and well performance monitoring related to resource availability/capability; talks, demonstrations, and presentations on groundwater topics; and monthly reports on shallow groundwater conditions as part of the Illinois Water and Climate Summary. Staff also collect basic groundwater information for use in service/research needs.
Kenneth J. Hlinka, (217) 333-8431
Engaged in all activities of the Public Service Program. Contact for all types of groundwater information, well production testing and test analyses, well design, and water-level monitoring network data. Principal contact for water well records.
Greg Rogers, (217) 244-7120
Database programmer and contact for specialized data requests.
Database Development and Management
Program staff are continuing their efforts in a Windows-based computer environment. Entry of data sent to the Water Survey by county health departments continues and still focuses on automated document tracking and computerization of "header" information (owner, depth, use, date drilled, etc.) for private well records throughout the state. Computerization allows easy access and availability of these data; however, ultimately photocopies of the records are requested.
Illinois Water Inventory Program (IWIP)
A comprehensive program to inventory water use throughout the state began in 1978. It was designed to collect data in three major categories: water withdrawal, water use, and water returns. The database includes locations and amounts of water withdrawn from surface and groundwater sources. Public water supplies and self-supplied industries are being inventoried. Rural water usage can be estimated from census data combined with municipal population served. Data are summarized geographically by county and drainage basin, as well as by various water use and water source categories for inclusion in the National Water Use Data System.
Contacts: Bryant. See also IWIP.
Well and Aquifer Tests
Program staff conduct well production and aquifer tests free of charge on municipal and other large supply wells. Data collected from these tests are used to estimate the long-term safe yield for the well owner. Staff typically conduct tests and analyze data for drilling contractors and consultants. Staff also provide advice on well design (see next project description).
As part of the well and aquifer testing program, the Water Survey provides advice on well design to municipal and industrial well owners and consulting engineers. The Survey's main goal is to ensure that a well will yield sediment-free groundwater from an aquifer at the pumping rate desired by the authority requesting assistance. In addition, Survey staff frequently suggest optimal well spacings, pumping rates, and pumping schedules for a well or well field to prolong well and aquifer service life.
Observation Well Network
An integral activity is the collection of groundwater-level data. This information is readily obtainable for use by the media, government agencies, consulting engineers, well-drilling contractors, the general public, and Survey scientists. The Water Survey is the only state or federal agency in Illinois that maintains a statewide observation well water-level monitoring program. Groundwater-level data are continually collected from a statewide network of approximately 113 active observation wells. Historical data on 127 inactive observation wells are also available. Of the active observation wells, 49 are equipped with continuous water-level recorders. Groundwater levels in the remaining wells are measured monthly.
Groundwater Information Requests
Program staff respond to requests for information and technical assistance pertaining to groundwater resource availability and quality, water well design, potential yields of wells, and hydraulic properties of regional aquifers in the state. Various individuals and agencies make informational requests. Responses take the form of telephone calls, letters, and written reports. Program staff maintain extensive files of well records, well and aquifer production tests, water quality analyses, and file reports.