A 3D computer model being developed by Queensland University of Technology will provide scientists with a new tool that could be used for the strategic management of groundwater resources within South East Queensland.
It will allow them to drill ‘virtual’ bore holes and determine the complexities of underground water systems and the geology of aquifers.
‘Factors such as rapid population growth and drought are producing significant impacts on groundwater resources, however, in most areas these natural systems and surface links are not well understood,’ said Associate Prof Malcolm Cox from QUT’s Institute of Sustainable Resources.
‘The objective of this project is to develop a tool that makes it possible to catalogue where and how groundwater occurs and assess any changes over time,’ he added.
Prof Cox said the model would include groundwater levels, flow directions, water quality and bore locations and depths.
The area covered by the model will stretch from the New South Wales border in the south to Noosa in the north, Toowoomba in the west and the bay islands in the east.
‘This is one of the faster growing regions in Australia and one within which water resources are becoming inadequate and groundwater is increasingly being utilised,’ he said.
Development of the model, known as HYDROSEQ, is a collaborative venture involving QUT, the Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation, Natural Resources and Water, Geological Survey of Queensland, CSIRO and local councils.