22-27 September 2019
Trade Fairs and Congress Center (FYCMA)
Europe/Madrid timezone

Remote Sensing for Monitoring and Mapping Karst Groundwater Flooding in the Republic of Ireland

23 Sep 2019, 15:30
Conference room 1.A ()

Conference room 1.A

Oral Topic 5 - Tools, methods and models to study groundwater Parallel


Dr Ted McCormack (Geological Survey Ireland)


Karst related groundwater flooding represents a significant hazard in many rural communities in Ireland. A series of unprecedented flood events in recent years have reinforced the need to improve our ability to quantify the location and likelihood of flood occurrence. Geological Survey Ireland, in collaboration with Trinity College Dublin and Carlow Institute of Technology, has established a collaborative project to investigate groundwater flooding, with particular emphasis on seasonal karst lakes known as turloughs. There are over 400 recorded turloughs across Ireland, the majority of which located on limestone lowlands. Turloughs can completely dry during summer months but extend to hundreds of hectares during the winter flood season. The practical limitations of establishing and maintaining a network of over 400 turloughs supported the use of remote sensing and GIS techniques to delineate flood extents and monitor flood prone areas in near real time using passive satellite imagery such as of the ESA Copernicus programme. Measurements at 50 sites for over 18 months were used to calibrate and validate results from satellite data. With limited recorded groundwater flood data, the use of remote sensing data provides historical archives of images to look at past flood conditions to optimise the detection of groundwater and delineate maximum groundwater flood maps. These new data will improve the fundamental hydrological understanding of groundwater flooding in Ireland, enabling key stakeholders to develop appropriate flood mitigation measures and allow for informed flood assessments to be made in future.

Primary authors

Dr Ted McCormack (Geological Survey Ireland) Dr Owen Naughton (Department of Built Environment, Carlow Institute of Technology, ) Dr Joan Campanya (Geological Survey Ireland) Ms Rebecca Bradford (Tobin Consulting Engineers)

Presentation Materials

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