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Kansas Geological Survey, Open-file Report 1998-43

Guidelines for the Application of the Top Specified Boundary Layer (TSBL) Method to Problems of Contaminant Hydrogeology

Hillel Rubin, Robert W. Buddemeier, and David P. Young

KGS Open File Report 1998-43
September 26, 1998


This report presents the basic philosophy and possible uses of the Top Specified Boundary Layer (TSBL) method in studies of contaminant hydrogeology.

The boundary layer (BL) method was originally developed in the beginning of the 20th century, for the approximate analysis of issues of fluid dynamics. Since then it has been useful in a variety of topics associated with fluid flows, heat transfer and mass transfer. Nowadays the BL approach is known as an integral method for the solution of partial differential equations.

The traditional or classical approach of the boundary layer (BL) method considers that a property of interest is distributed within a minor portion of a domain, and that its distribution profiles are similar over its range of occurrence. The property occupies the BL region. In that region its value varies between a prescribed value at the boundary of the domain and a negligible value at the top of the BL region.

The TSBL method separates the definition of the BL region (or regions) of similar distribution profiles of the relevant property, from the region of interest (ROI), which is a TSBL. The ROI occupies the portion of the domain in which the magnitude of the relevant property exceeds an acceptable value. The ROI comprises a portion of the BL, whereas the BL is a region of the overall domain in which distribution profiles are similar.

Since the presentation of the basic TSBL idea in 1996, it has been employed as a robust approach for the development of quick analyses of issues of contaminant hydrogeology. In this case, the property of interest is typically the contaminant concentration. The TSBL method can be applied to a variety of types of boundary conditions typical of contaminated aquifers.

This report provides background and explanations of the general applications of the TSBL method. It also reviews the various applications of the TSBL method developed by the Kansas Geological Survey for studies of groundwater mineralization in Kansas.

A section in this report lists and describes these applications of the TSBL method. For each application the reader is provided with references and guidelines for appropriate use of the TSBL method.

The complete text of this report is available as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file.

Read the PDF version (278 kB)

Kansas Geological Survey, Geohydrology
Placed online Oct. 22, 2013
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