A Simple, Low‐Cost Method to Monitor Duration of Ground Water Pumping
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Monitoring ground water withdrawals for agriculture is a difficult task, while agricultural development leads frequently to overexploitation of the aquifers. To fix the problem, sustainable management is required based on the knowledge of water uses. This paper introduces a simple and inexpensive direct method to determine the duration of pumping of a well by measuring the temperature of its water outlet pipe. A pumping phase is characterized by a steady temperature value close to ground water temperature. The method involves recording the temperature of the outlet pipe and identifying the different stages of pumping. It is based on the use of the low-cost and small-size Thermochron iButton temperature logger and can be applied to any well, provided that a water outlet pipe is accessible. The temperature time series are analyzed to determine the duration of pumping through manual and automatic posttreatments. The method was tested and applied in South India for irrigation wells using electricity-powered pumps. The duration of pumping obtained by the iButton method is fully consistent with the duration of power supply (1.5% difference).
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