Simulation of the groundwater flow model of the Western Aquifer of Mauritius
The Western Aquifer is the largest aquifer of the island of Mauritius, and it is heavily exploited to cater for domestic and industrial water demand. This is mainly because it is situated in an urbanised region where water demand is high. This aquifer covers a major part of the districts of Plaines-Wilhems, Moka and Black-River. According to recent hydrogeological studies, the Western Aquifer is made up of two sub-aquifers, the aquifer of Curepipe and the aquifer of Phoenix. The aquifer of Curepipe has been the subject of several hydrogeological studies in the past. These studies have significantly helped in the understanding of the nature of this subsurface basin, and have to a large extent helped towards a safe exploitation of the aquifer. Several exploration techniques, ranging from geophysical surveys, drilling of coreholes and monitoring of groundwater levels have been carried out. The present study aims at improving the understanding of the hydrogeology of the Western Aquifer through the use of a numerical groundwater flow model. The findings of the study show that the intra- calderic borders act as groundwater divides within the system, controlling the flow characteristics within the aquifer and significant flow paths actually connect the two sub aquifers.
Keywords: Hydrogeology, Western Aquifer, Groundwater flow model, Conceptual model