Dr. Mohamed Sultan has been awarded National Academy of Science grant to study Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System (NSAS) in Egypt . The research will utilize Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), CPC Merged Analysis of Precipitation (CMAP), Soil Moisture active Passive (SMAP), Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS) Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), gravity and magnetic surveying, geochemical and hydrological modelling to understand the hydrogeologic, longevity and optimum utilization of NSAS.
The research will focus on the following tasks: (1) determine the observed temporal variations in GRACE-derived Terrestrial Water Storage (TWS) over the NSAS (2) determine the rates and distribution of NSAS depletion (3) investigate the factors responsible for depletion (4) study the hydrogeologic factors contributing observed GRACE-derived TWS variations (5) estimate the life of NSAS at current rate of extraction and, (6) investigate the modern recharge rates.
Answering these questions will have significant intellectual merits and broad societal implications. The intellectual merit of this investigation will be the utilization of an integrated, innovative, and cost-effective approach to assess the groundwater potential of the trans-boundary NSAS and to develop optimum utilization techniques. The research will focus on developing predictive tools that can accurately assess the longevity of aquifer systems under various extraction scenarios and the findings could be used to develop sound strategic plans to utilize such systems. Result of the investigation will be vital to the livelihood of Egypt’s 90 million citizens who depend on the River Nile water and are in great need to identify and utilize alternative water resources for their sustenance. This project will be accomplished jointly by US scientists from Western Michigan University and Egyptian collaborators from Ain Shams University who will be receiving training in Egypt and USA on the applications of integrated approaches to assess groundwater potential in arid lands.