Geophysical Research Letters

Visualization of conduit-matrix conductivity differences in a karst aquifer using time-lapse electrical resistivity



[1] In the karstic upper Floridan aquifer, surface water flows into conduits of the groundwater system and may exchange with water in the aquifer matrix. This exchange has been hypothesized to occur based on differences in discharge at the Santa Fe River Sink-Rise system, north central Florida, but has yet to be visualized using any geophysical techniques. Using electrical resistivity tomography, we conducted a time-lapse study at two locations with mapped conduits connecting the Santa Fe River Sink to the Santa Fe River Rise to study changes of electrical conductivity during times of varying discharge over a six-week period. Our results show conductivity differences between matrix, conduit changes in resistivity occurring through time at the locations of mapped karst conduits, and changes in electrical conductivity during rainfall infiltration. These observations provide insight into time scales and matrix conduit conductivity differences, illustrating how surface water flow recharged to conduits may flow in a groundwater system in a karst aquifer.