Mapping groundwater dynamics using multiple sources of exhaustive high resolution data

P.A. Finke, D.J. Brus, M.F.P. Bierkens, T. Hoogland, M. Knotters, F. de Vries

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


Existing groundwater table (GWT) class maps, available at full coverage for the Netherlands at 1:50,000 scale, no longer satisfy user demands. Groundwater levels have changed due to strong human impact, so the maps are partially outdated. Furthermore, a more dynamic description of groundwater table dynamics representative for the current climate is needed. A mapping method to obtain a large set of parameters describing groundwater table dynamics was developed. The method uses time series analysis and well-timed phreatic head measurements to obtain a data set at point support. This point data set is correlated to groups of exhaustive high-resolution ancillary data by stratified multiple linear regression. Finally, simple kriging is applied to interpolate the residuals of the regression model. The method was applied in a 1,790,000 ha area and its performance was measured in 10,000 and 179,000 ha test areas. The relation between higher sampling density, mapping cost and map quality was explored. Validation results show that reasonable to good quality maps of various aspects of groundwater dynamics can be obtained by this method, at much lower cost than traditional survey-based mapping methods. The method includes the quantification of uncertainty at the actual sampling density and allows the a priori estimation of uncertainty at other sampling densities. Future research aims at identification of the effect of sources of error in ancillary data and how to diminish these.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-39
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • groundwater level
  • mapping
  • water table
  • statistics
  • time series
  • soil surveys
  • netherlands
  • geostatistics
  • time-series
  • soil survey
  • models

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