Characteristics of the study area

The Aparan basin extends over about 300 km2 between the Aragats volcanic massif (4,095 m) in the west, the Pambak and Tsahkunyats Ridges on the north and east respectively, and the Aray volcanic massif to the southeast. The study area is located at the middle reaches of the Kasakh River at 1,300 m. above sea level.

The geological sequence mainly comprises Quaternary alluvial, lacustrine-postglacial sediments and volcanic lavas reaching up to 300 m in thickness. Water bearing rocks are represented by:

(1) Volcanic rocks of the Aragats massif (andesite, andesite-dacite), which outcrop westward from Aparan village as well as on the right bank of the Kasakh River. The lavas are intensely fractured, discontinuously water bearing, and a number of water springs occur in this hydro-geologic setting (yielding 100-600 l/s).

(2) Lacustrine-alluvial sediments, represented by boulder-pebbles and sandy-loamy sediments. Both unconfined and confined aquifers occur in these hydrogeologic settings. Ground water monitoring revealed mixing of very deep thermal waters into these aquifers. The temperature of the water in well #8 reaches 10°C, while the mean temperature of water in the adjacent wells is about 7-8°C.

The till loams provide confining for the aquifer units, and act as a regional aquitard. The Quaternary succession largely controls the confining conditions of the regional aquifer as well as its recharge, which occurs on topographic highs where bedrock either outcrops or is covered by a thin discontinuous till.

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