A multitracer approach for characterizing interactions between shallow groundwater and the hydrothermal system in the Norris Geyser Basin area, Yellowstone National Park

W. Payton Gardner, David D. Susong, D. Kip Solomon, Henry P. Heasler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Multiple environmental tracers are used to investigate age distribution, evolution, and mixing in local- to regional-scale groundwater circulation around the Norris Geyser Basin area in Yellowstone National Park. Springs ranging in temperature from 3°C to 90°C in the Norris Geyser Basin area were sampled for stable isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen, major and minor element chemistry, dissolved chlorofluorocarbons, and tritium. Groundwater near Norris Geyser Basin is comprised of two distinct systems: a shallow, cool water system and a deep, high-temperature hydrothermal system. These two end-member systems mix to create springs with intermediate temperature and composition. Using multiple tracers from a large number of springs, it is possible constrain the distribution of possible flow paths and refine conceptual models of groundwater circulation in and around a large, complex hydrothermal system.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberQ08005
JournalGeochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
Volume12
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

Keywords

  • chemistry
  • groundwater
  • heat flow
  • residence time distribution
  • springs
  • tectonics

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