Groundwater Animations

Compiled by Mark Francek (more info) at Central Michigan University (more info)

Find animations exploring permeability, groundwater speed, the hydrologic cycle and groundwater, cone of depression, and geyser eruption.

Click here to browse the complete set of Visualization Collections (more info) .

Permeability, Michigan Tech University (more info) Michigan Environmental Education Curriculum

Groundwater Speed, Michigan Tech University (more info) Most have little idea on how slow groundwater can move. For this Flash animation, water movement is contrasted for three different environments: river, lake, and aquifer. Whereas the movement of water in a river is depicted as 7 ft/s, movement in an aquifer is only .33 ft/day.

Hydrologic Cycle and Groundwater, Wiley ( This site may be offline. ) A QuickTime animation with accompanying audio outlines the basic pathways associated with the hydrologic cycle. The second part of the video focuses on groundwater, discussing such terms as infiltration, percolation, and groundwater table. Contamination issues are also introduced. The idealized flow lines shown in cross section should be viewed with caution, especially for limestone and glacial terrains where groundwater flow can be much more circuitous. The animation loads slowly.

Cone of Depression, McGraw Hill (more info) A simple Flash animation exhibits the formation of a cone of depression as a result of groundwater overdraft. Contaminants from a nearby landfill are drawn into the cone of depression. At this same page, there are a number of other groundwater animations, including salt water intrusion and the formation of an artesian well. Access the animation by clicking on the "Pumping Well and Cone of Depression" link.

Geyser Eruption, Exploring Earth (more info) This Flash animation uses a cross section to explain geyser eruption. As groundwater enters fractured bedrock, it is heated by nearby magma but is prevented from boiling by the pressure of overlying water. Eventually, the water becomes superheated and is forced upward, pushing water to the surface. The animation can be paused and rewound to emphasize important points.