KWRRI Research Reports


Information on fluorescent dyes used for water tracing and the results of six studies are reported. Optical brightener, direct yellow, fluorescein, rhodamine (WT), and other dyes are described and the procedures employed in their use ·in the field and in equilibration experiments are discussed. Three of the six studies consisted of investigations of the equilibration with passive detectors of three of the dyes. The absorption of optical brightener on fabric detectors was apparently linear with concentration and with immersion time, while detectors became rapidly saturated with direct yellow. Equilibrium of fluorescein on charcoal detectors with an elutriating solution was not achieved.

Several data processing tasks were performed, including the creation of a computer file for field data and the writing-of programs to sort the field data and generate plotted maps, and to display the total fluorescence of samples. A fifth study was based. on a series of dye traces into Royal Spring and Russell Cave Spring in the Inner Bluegrass Karst Region. Samples were collected with an automatic water sampler and the resulting flow velocity determinations combined with discharge data provided values at a number of aquifer parameters. The most interesting result was the very small value for depth of flow. A final study was of fracture traces identified on topographic maps and aerial photographs in the Inner Bluegrass Karst Region. It was found that while more such features were visible on the photographs, some were only apparent on maps.

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Funding Information

The work upon which this report is based was supported in part by funds provided by the United States Department of the lnterior, Washington, D.C., as authorized by the Water Research and Development Act of 1978. Public Law 95-467.