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CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION 1.1 GENERAL Water is the most vital requirement for mankind.

Ground water constitutes a major portion of the earths water circulatory system known as hydrologic cycle. Ground water occurs in permeable geologic formation known as aquifer, i.e. formation having structure that can store and transmit water to wells. In recent years much progress has been made in the application of GIS techniques to ground water. It can be utilised in numerous applications like planning, rural development etc.


SOURCES OF GROUND WATER Groundwater sources are the aquifers made up of porous materials with

voids or fissures formed in rocks in which the water gets stored through infiltration from the surface during rainfall and from the water bodies. These voids of the substrata or fissures in rocks are generally interconnected permitting the movement of groundwater. But in some rocks, the fissures may be isolated, and thus preventing the movement of water between the interstices. Hence, it is evident that

the mode of occurrence of groundwater depends largely upon the type of formation, and hence upon the geology of the area.
Ground Surface



The quality of water is determined by its physical, chemical and bacteriological characteristics. Physical characteristics are represented by temperature, turbidity, colour, taste, and odour. Chemical characteristics are represented by pH, total dissolved solids, hardness, chloride, sulphate, fluoride, nitrate, iron, manganese etc. Bacteriological characteristics of the water, is represented by the presence of coliform group of organisms described by MPN(most probable number) of the coliforms in the water sample.



Water quality is a measure of the suitability of water for a particular use based on selected physical, chemical, and biological characteristics. Quality of water is determined by measuring and analyzing the characteristics of the water such as temperature, dissolved mineral content, and number of bacteria. Selected characteristics are then compared to numeric standards and guidelines to decide about its suitability to various uses. particular use. As the rainwater flows over the surface of the earth, it picks up or dissolves certain organic and inorganic materials. As surface water seeps down into the ground water storage most of the suspended particles are filtered out, but on the other hand, the water dissolves the minerals and salts present in earths layers through which it travels before joining the ground water storage. The impurities which water dissolves or picks up as suspended matter may sometimes make it useful and potable for drinking, and sometimes they may render it harmful and unfit. For example, certain minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium, fluoride etc., in small quantities may be useful and good for health of the public. But the same minerals if present in higher concentrations than the maximum permissible level, render water unfit for drinking. Sometimes the water may contain toxic or poisonous substances such as arsenic, cadmium, chromium, cyanides, lead, silver, copper etc., which may be very harmful to the public health, even if they present in very low concentration. Water quality is a relative term used to convey the idea of the potential usability of groundwater or surface water for a



Many practices with domestic wastewater and with livestock manure may lead to contamination of groundwater. The water percolating from facilities such as Septic tanks, cesspools, latrines contains viruses, bacteria and parasites and may contaminate groundwater supplies. Sewers in the unsaturated zone may leak sewage into the soil, and it is likely that the extent of this problem is largely unrecognized. In the saturated zone, sewer breaks will result in groundwater contamination. Storm water collected in sewers that also transport domestic wastewater can present a major problem. Other than direct discharges to water bodies (which clearly lead to contamination), it may also be disposed of by collection in basins and subsequent drainage to soil. This percolation may transfer pathogens to groundwater. It is found that viruses are available in the soil 9 m below a storm water basin (Vaugh et al. 1978). The sources of Ground water pollution along with their health effects are given in the table 1.1. Contami Sources to ground water nant pollution Chloride From saltwater intrusion, mineral dissolution, industrial and domestic waste. Contami Sources to ground water nant pollution Dissolved Occur naturally from man-made solids sources such as landfill leachate, sewage. A measure of the dissolved salts or minerals in the water. Potential health and other effects Deteriorates plumbing, water heaters, and municipal water-works equipment at high levels. Potential health and other effects Presence of excess concentrations of specific substances not included in the Safe Water Drinking Act, which would make water objectionable. High

concentrations of dissolved solids shorten the life water heaters. Fluoride Occurs widely from industry. Decreases incidence of tooth decay but high levels can stain or mottle teeth. Causes crippling bone disorder (calcification of the bones and joints) at very high levels. Hardness Result of metallic ions dissolved in Decreases the lather formation of the water; concentration of calcium soap and increases scale formation carbonate. Calcium carbonate is in hot-water heaters derived from dissolved limestone and low-pressure boilers at high or discharges from operating levels. or abandoned mines. Nitrate Occurs naturally in mineral Toxicity results from the bodys (as deposits, soils, seawater, natural breakdown of nitrate to nitrogen) freshwater systems, the nitrite. Causes blue baby disease, atmosphere, and biota. Enters the or methemoglobinemia, which environment from fertilizer, threatens oxygen-carrying capacity feedlots, and sewage. of the blood. Sodium from leaching of surface and Can be a health risk factor for those underground deposits of salt and individuals on a low-sodium diet. decomposition of various minerals.. Turbidity Caused by the presence of Objectionable for aesthetic reasons. suspended matter such as clay, silt, Indicative of clay or other inert and fine particles of organic and suspended particles in drinking inorganic matter and other water. microscopic organisms. Contami Sources to ground water Potential health and other effects nant pollution Color caused by decaying leaves, plants, Suggests that treatment is needed. organic matter, copper, iron, and No health concerns. Aesthetically manganese. unpleasing.


Indicates, by numerical expression, High pH causes a bitter taste; Lowthe degree to which water is pH water will corrode or dissolve alkaline or acidic. Represented on metals and other substances. a scale of 0-14 where 0 is the most acidic, 14 is the most alkaline and 7 is neutral.



GIS is a strong tool, which stores spatial as well as non-spatial data digitally and establishes a link between the two. Resultantly it produces not just maps but an information system, which can retrieve, analyse and represent the stored data in desired ways. It can be utilised in numerous applications like planning, rural development etc. A digital database also has the advantage of easy cost-effective updating, transparency, rationality and strength of complex analysis. The increasing amount of multiple data sets being made available from various sources has created a need for efficient capture, storage, management, retrieval and analysis of geoenvironmental data to address various groundwater pollution problems of varying nature, dimension and complexity, cropping at local, regional and basin scale worldwide. Geographic Information System (GIS) has emerged as an effective tool for relating and integrating vast volumes of different data types, obtained from different sources and compiled on different scales. GIS technology is very useful for the preparation of ground water prospective areas mapping & management plan on a scientific basis. The information generated on prospects, quality and depth in a single map will help the planners and decision

makers for devising sound and feasible ground water development plans. The main advantages in using GIS techniques for ground water exploration are : Quick and inexpensive technique for getting information on the occurrence of ground water, aids to select promising areas for further ground water exploration thus reducing field work and provides information on prospects, depth and quality in one map. These types of information is very helpful in the areas where more emphasis is on ground water for the irrigation and drinking purposes. The GIS is very useful to quantify the spatial geologic data and statistical analysis to determine the relation between groundwater quality parameters and geological units. The advent of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) has added new vistas in the field of ground water resources mapping and management. It helps in the integrating remotely sensed derived data with ancillary data to have more precise and correct information about various factors involved in the ground water resources management. This helps in concentrating the field experts in areas where greater potential exists and eliminating other zones, thus reducing the cost and time involved in exploration procedures.



Ground water being hidden resource, is more vulnerable to various threats of contamination and depletion. Urban growth and rapid increase in population have induced tremendous pressure on natural resources especially for ground water.

The local pollution causes major changes in ground water quality which affects the human health and environment. These changes cannot be measured directly and are thus difficult to quantify. But it is essential to get data of adequate accuracy on the quality of ground water to make mitigation measure to preserve the ground water quality. In such case GIS based analyses for ground water quality mapping proves to be useful. Based on the needs the following Objectives are framed: To analyse the status of ground water quality in Virudhunagar district for drinking and irrigation purposes using Visual Studio based on secondary data; To prepare Ground water quality map of Virudhunagar district using GIS; and To identify the most vulnerable area in terms of ground water quality.

CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF LITERATURE 2.1 GENERAL Review of literature will help in gathering information and to perceive significance of the current status of the problem to be dealt with. Also, it helps in understanding the studies already done regarding the problem at hand. The applications of various methods in determining spatial distribution of rainfall over an area were reviewed. 2.2 GROUNDWATER QUALITY MAPPING Assessment of Groundwater Pollution (Quality) Around Ludhiana and its Environs in Punjab was investigated by Dr. V.V.S. Gurunadha Rao and Dr. S. Sankaran(1994). Ludhiana and Mukstar were chosen as the Study area. In Ludhiana, they assessed the groundwater and surface water quality in and around the industrial belt through selection of observation wells for regular monitoring. Detailed analysis of water samples for trace elements and TDS etc was carried out. They Evaluated the aquifer parameters and developed a geohydrological database and developed a mathematical model to simulate groundwater flow and mass transport for assessment of groundwater contamination. Prediction of contaminant

migration, extent of contaminated areas for next 10-15 years and suggestion of remedial measures was carried out using this model. In Muktsar, they performed the same process for assessment of water logging and water quality particularly for nitrate pollution and produced a map for evaluation of water quality in Mukstar district using GIS.

Assessment of Ground Water Potential and Quality of Dera Bassi and Bhunerherri Blocks in Patiala District, Punjab was investigated by Dr. K.S. Takshi(2000). Hoshiarpur, Amritsar, and Patiala were chosen as the study area. They identified and delineated potential sites for ground water exploitation and the high permeability zones for ground water augmentation by artificial recharge techniques. They determined the sub-surface disposition of strata and nature of aquifers and estimated the aquifer parameters. This helped them in determining the influent/effluent nature of the surface and ground water bodies. The drainage system in the area was analysed and an assessment of soil and ground water quality was performed. Using all these they produced the following maps using GIS: Hydrogeomorphological maps of Dera Bassi and Bhunerherri blocks, Patiala district. Aquifer characteristics determined by the conducting of pumping tests in tube wells supported by ground geophysical surveys. Water table contour maps for pre and post monsoon. Water quality maps. Maps of fresh, marginal and saline and ground water zones.

Map of ground water potential. The central groundwater board and central pollution control board(2002) performed an assessment of groundwater quality for the purpose of mapping using GIS. Delhi was chosen as the study area. The map is shown below.

In a similar manner, the Govt. of Haryana assessed the groundwater quality to map the quality of water in various areas of Haryana(2003). This is shown as follows.

This paper mainly deals with the preparation of Integrated Ground Water Resource (IGWR) map indicating ground water prospects, quality and depth. The main hydrogeomorphic units mapped are alluvial plain, alluvial plain with sand cover, valley fills, interrmontane valley/basin, structural hills, residual hills, buried pediments, linear ridges along with lineaments. Each geomorphic unit is assessed for probable ground water potentiality. Depth to water table and well location data has been collected from Ground Water Cell, Department of Agriculture, Haryana. The prepared hydrogeomorphology, ground water quality and depth maps have been digitized in Arc/Info GIS environment. In order to provide more useful information on ground water resources, the authors have

developed a methodology on integrated ground water resource map on 1:50,000 scale using remote sensing and conventional data in GIS environment. The IGWR map thus prepared gives information on ground water potential, quality and depth to water level at any given location. This information was very useful in narrowing down the target areas for citing bore wells. This will result in significant saving of time and cost.

Geographic Information System and groundwater quality mapping in Panvel Basin, Maharashtra, India was carried out by S. anbazhagan and Archana Nair. Panvel Basin of Raigarh district, Maharashtra was chosen as the study area for groundwater quality mapping using the Geographic Information System (GIS). The study area was typically covered by Deccan basaltic rock types of Cretaceous to Eocene age. Though the basin received heavy rainfall, it frequently faced water scarcity problems as well as water quality problems in some specific areas. Hence, they carried out GIS based groundwater quality mapping has been carried out in the region with the help of data generated from chemical analysis of water samples collected from the basin. Groundwater samples showed quality exceedence in terms of chloride, hardness, TDS and salinity. These parameters indicate the level of quality of groundwater for drinking and irrigation purposes. Idrisi 32 GIS software was used for generation of various thematic maps and for spatial analysis and integration to produce the final groundwater quality map. The groundwater quality map showed fragments pictorially representing groundwater zones that are desirable and undesirable for drinking and irrigation purposes.

The Figure below shows a Map of Nitrogen Dioxide Pollution prepared in the year of 1997. London was the Study area. A team of Researchers of London carried out this project funded by the Government.

Mapping of Arsenic in Groundwater was carried out in May 2000. Since May 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has published three maps summarizing a national data set on arsenic in groundwater. These maps were intended as a big-picture view of patterns in naturally occurring arsenic across the United States. But interest in using these maps for other purposes - making costbenefit estimates for new drinking-water regulations or predicting arsenic-related health risks for different regions of the country - has been intense. National regulatory and legislative bodies needed to know which parts of the country have high arsenic in drinking water; how serious an effect arsenic may have on public health; and where reducing the arsenic concentrations will be most costly. Maps of

existing water-quality data were produced to clarify these issues. The maps are shown as follows.

County map: Arsenic concentrations found in at least 25% of ground water samples in each county

Data map: 31,350 ground-water arsenic samples collected in 1973-2001

Equal-area map: Arsenic concentrations found in at least 25% of ground-water samples within a moving 50km radius

Figure shows a daily flood risk map for the USA. The map is based on flood forecasts made by thirteen Regional Flood Centres (RFCs) across the country. Forecasts are developed on the basis of data on rainfall, the water content of lying snow, antecedent river conditions, temperature, wind and evaporation rates. Hydrological models such as this are used to predict likelihood of flooding, including flash floods, and are updated twice daily.


Virudhunagar District is part of the Vaippar Basin located in the Southern part of TamilNadu. It lies between a North Latitude of 1100N and 1200'N and a East Longitude of 7728E and 7850E. Virudhunagar District is landlocked on all sides with no direct access to the sea. It is bound on the north by Madurai, on the north-east by Sivaganga, on the east by Ramanathapuram and on the south by Tirunelveli and Tuticorin districts.

Physiographically it consists of two distinct regions. The eastern slopes of the Western Ghats in Srivilliputtur and Rajapalayam taluks and the black soil plains of Sivakasi, Virudhunagar, Sattur, Aruppukkottai, Tiruchili and Kariapatti. The average height of the hills of the eastern slopes of the Western Ghats is 1500m, though a few peaks rise to 1700m. The Total Geographical area of Virudhunagar district is 4243 Km2.

Match factories at Sivakasi, Sattur ,Virudhunagar; Fire works ,Off-set Printing Presses at Sivakasi; Nib Industry at Sattur; Ginning, Spinning & Weaving Mills, Rajapalayam; Madras Cements, Thulukkapatti; Tamilnadu Cements, Alangulam; Tamilnadu Asbestos, Alangulam; Bolts and Nuts (T.V. Sundaram Fastners) Aaviyur are some of the important Industries in the district.


3.1.2 RIVER SYSTEM OF VIRUDHUNAGAR DISTRICT Virudhunagar does not have any perennial rivers. The Vaippar, Arjuna nadi, and Gundar constitute the river network of the District. Numerous streams and rivulets, activated by the monsoon, feed these rivers. The Mandiri odai and Girudhamal nadi flow into the Gundar, which irrigates the northeastern region of the District. The Sengundrapuram odai, Kausika manadi, Uppodai and Mannarkottaiyar are feeder streams of the Arjuna nadi, which flows through the central portion of the District. The Kayalkudiyar and Nichepa nadi join the Vaippar, which runs through the southern part of the District. The Arjuna and the Vaippar meet at Irukkangudi.


The climate of the region is semi-arid tropical monsoon type. It has a high mean temperature and a low degree of humidity. The temperatures range from 20 C to 37 C. April, May and June are the hottest months of the year. Virudhunagar

receives scanty rainfall with an annual average of 812 mm. The South West monsoon which sets in June and lasts till August brings scanty rain. The bulk of the rainfall is received during the North East monsoon in the months of October, November and December.


The most striking feature of this drought prone district is absence of dependable irrigation sources such as perennial rivers. Though 33% of the cultivated area is classified as irrigated area, assured irrigation is available only for 57% through the wells, the remaining area being irrigated by rainfed tanks. Two reservoirs, namely Periyar and Kovilar at Pilavakkal in Watrap irrigate about 3800 hectares through 40 tanks. There are irrigation reservoir like Anaikootam, Kullursandai, Vembakottai and Golwarpatti.

The details of Reservoir systems in the district are : Pilavukkal Reservoir System, Anaikuttam Reservoir Scheme, Vembakottai Reservoir; Kullursandai Reservoir, Golwarpatti Reservoir, Chennampatti Anicut; Athikulam Anicut Scheme, Ambalathadi Anicut Scheme, Irukkankudi Reservoir Project; Nagariar Reservoir near Sasthakoil, Nilayur Extension Canal. 3.2 INDUSTRIES

The establishment of textile mills, cement factories and a number of industries in the small and medium sectors coupled with the encouragement given by the state Government in the form of incentives and setting up of industrial centres has accelerated the rate of industrialization in the District. Cotton is a major commercial crop of the District and the cotton industry therefore occupies an important place in the economy. Rajapalayam is the chief centre for spinning mills and ginning factories. Surgical cotton and bandage cloth are manufactured here. Textile mills in the produce a variety of cotton yarn. As the District has deposits of limestone and gypsum, the cement industry has gained a

strong foothold. Tamil Nadu Cements a Public Sector undertaking at Alangulam and Madras Cements a Private Sector undertaking at Thulukkanpatti are two large cement producing units. Tamil Nadu Cements has an annual

production capacity of 4 lakh tonnes of Portland cement while Madras Cements has an annual capacity of 4.15 lakh tonnes. Tamil Nadu Asbestos is another Public Sector unit in the District producing asbestos cement sheets. Sivakasi and Sattur are famous for the match industry. There are over 4500 match units. Crackers and fireworks is another important industry with about 400 units in the District. Explosives for blasting are also manufactured here. Over 70% of the total production of matches and fireworks in India is manufactured in Virudhunagar District. A large percentage of crackers are exported. The printing industry was originally established to supply labels for the match and firework industries. Soon the industry developed and diversified into other areas of printing like books, posters, greeting cards and diaries. Sivakasi now offers state of the art, world class printing facilities. Sundaram Fasteners and Brakes India Ltd. , private sector enterprises of the TVS group are located at Aviyur and Kanjanaiyakampatti in Kariapatti taluk. The former manufactures high density bolts and nuts while the latter manufactures automobile brakes.


Collection of Groundwater Quality Data

Collection of Maps of Study Area from Taluk to Block

Identification of Standards

Prepartion of Boundary Map by Digitisation

Grouping of Parameters

Preparation of Groundwater Well Map

Preparation of Temporal Map

Qualitative Index

Preparation of Spatial Map

Quantitative Index

Comparison with Standards Using Visual Studio

Analysis of Results




Generally, groundwater is clear, colourless, odourless and free from physical impurities, because it undergoes natural filtration during the process of percolation through soil pores. But groundwater is harder than the surface water of the region in which it occurs. Since water is a solvent for many salts and some types of organic matters, as groundwater moves along flow lines from recharge to discharge areas, its chemistry is altered by the variety of geo-chemical processes. These processes may include many chemical reactions, dissolution of limestone, oxidation-reduction reactions, ion-exchange processes, decomposition of aquifer rocks, transport of various leachates, industrial and municipal waste products, mining wastes and salt water intrusion. Groundwater, is hence, entirely not pure. Many of the dissolved natural substances contribute to human health enhancement by providing essential nutrients, while many contaminants introduced in the natural

hydrological system by humans or otherwise are associated with wide range of potential environmental health hazards.



4.3.1 The Central Public Health Environmental Engineering Organisation (CPHEEO) Recommended Guidelines for physical and chemical water quality standards as per CPHEEO Manual on Water supply and treatment are furnished in Table1 and the bacteriological water quality standards are furnished in Table2.

Table 4.1. Recommended guidelines for physical and chemical parameters Acceptablity by Characteristics Colour (units on platinium Cobalt scale) Taste and Odour Ph Total dissolved solids(TDS) (mg/L) Total Hardness (as CaCO3) Chloride (mg/L) Sulphate (mg/L) consumers 5 Cause for rejection 25

Unobjectionable Objectionable 7.0 to 8.5 500 200 200 200 < 6.5 or > 9.2 2000 600 1000 400

Flourides (mg/L) Nitrates (mg/L) Calcium (mg/L) Magnesium (mg/L) Iron (mg/L) Manganese (mg/L)

1 45 75 < 30 0.1 0.05

1.5 45 200 150 1.0 0.5

4.3.2 WHOs Latest Standard Guidelines for Potable Water Table 4.2. Recommended guidelines for physical and chemical parameters

Organism pH Hardness Total Dissolved Solids Sodium Chloride Fluoride

Guideline Value Preferably < 8.0 (Between 6.5 8.5) 500 mg/l (as CaCO3) 1000 mg/l 200 mg/l 250 mg/l 1.5 mg/l

4.3.3 Indian Standard Drinking Water Specifications (IS 10500 : 1991)

Table 4.3. Recommended guidelines for physical and chemical parameters Substance or characteristic pH Total hardness mg/l Chlorides mg/l Fluoride mg/l Calcium mg/l Magnesium mg/l Sulphate mg/l Requirement (Desirable limit) 6.5 - 8.5 300 250 1.0 75 30 200 Permissible limit in the Absence of Alternate Source No relaxation 600 1000 1.5 200 100 400



The comparison of the collected Secondary data with various drinking watrer standards such as IS, WHO, CPHEEO was designed using Visual Studio, shown as follows.





The Calculation of Water Quality Index was carried out in Microsoft Excel, shown as follows.