Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Carpenter, Philip J.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Geology


Hydrogeology--Maryland--Chesapeake Bay Region (Md. and Va.); Estuaries--Maryland--Chesapeake Bay Region (Md. and Va.); Seismic reflection method; Geology--Maryland--Chesapeake Bay Region (Md. and Va.)


The present near-surface hydrogeologic framework model impedes the understanding and remediation of environmental problems over source areas of Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD (APG). To refine this conceptual hydrogeologic model, high-resolution, single-channel, marine seismic reflection profiles were collected in the Bush River, Gunpowder River, and Chesapeake Bay areas of APG. The distribution and geometry of paleochannels in the near-surface aquifers were specific targets of this investigation. The best data were collected in areas where wave action removed or prohibited deposition of fine-grained sediments containing biogenic gas. Data collection was therefore limited to shoreline-parallel transects in water depths less than 3 meters. Of the nearly 120 km of shoreline surveyed during this investigation, 50 km of high quality data were interpreted as 16 seismic sections. Three major erosional unconformities, representing Pleistocene paleochannels, were identified from this seismic data. Modem creeks and their adjacent wetlands are associated with underlying paleochannels. These marshes were commonly used as waste disposal areas. Nested paleochannel deposits, which could connect the surficial aquifer with the Canal Creek aquifer, were also identified. This shallow water, high-resolution, marine seismic reflection study serves as a reconnaissance-type survey for characterizing the regional hydrostratigraphic framework. The areal distribution of paleochannel deposits, together with their vertical configuration, offers potential pathways for offsite migration of contaminants, as governed by hydraulic head conditions. Conceptual hydrogeological models should include these complex paleochannel deposits as an integral element, and their distribution should be investigated by more detailed geophysical and hydrogeological studies.


Includes bibliographical references (pages 174-177)


xii, 177 pages




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