FEFLOW Publications

The following list contains a number of publications about FEFLOW and about projects where FEFLOW has been used. This list is not complete, of course. If you know about any additional publications that should be listed here, please send the reference(s) to our support team!

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Title: Impact of a future high-capacity ship canal on the wetlands of the Seine river estuary nature reserve: assessment using a numerical model Proc. of the 2nd FEFLOW User Conference, Potsdam
Written by: Aude Garoute and Florence Lenhardt and Marc Boisson
in: 2009
Volume: Number:
on pages:
how published:



Abstract: To improve inland waterway transport from the Port of Le Havre (north-western France) to the River Seine, the Grand Port Maritime du Havre (GPMH) plans to connect two existing ship canals: the Tancarville Canal and the Le Havre Grand Canal. The planned connecting canal is located near the Seine estuary nature reserve and could jeopardise the surrounding wetlands by lowering the water table level in the area. A modelling approach using Feflow was used to assess the possible impacts of this project. First, the complex existing hydraulic system was modelled. This is characterized by the River Seine and its tidal influence, which causes significant variations in water table level in the area within short periods of time (tidal range of about 5 metres in 6 hours), and also by the anthropogenic management of the nature reserve: a network of ditches enables water from the Seine to penetrate inland and infiltrate back into the ground, thereby maintaining the water table at a specified level. The three-dimensional model built using Feflow includes three geological formations, corresponding to two aquifers separated by an aquitard. It reproduces the various groundwater flow exchanges: exchanges with canals, ditches and the Seine (during high or low tides) and also within the two aquifers. Three possible connecting canal locations were simulated. The impact of the project was then assessed through drawdown analysis and by mapping the variations in the extent of flooded areas. It would appear that the extent of the drawdown zone varies depending on the layout considered, but is generally limited to less than 1 km from the envisaged connecting canal. The effects on the nature reserve are strongly dependent on the layout studied. To minimize the project impact, a ditch running along the connecting canal was designed to maintain the water table level in the area. This lateral ditch was integrated into the groundwater model. Depending on the defined water level in the ditch, the drawdown effects initially observed can be reduced or eliminated. In some cases, the water table level can even be raised in comparison with the current situation. Thus, thanks to the modelling approach developed during the present study it was possible to assess the impact of the connecting canal and design mitigating measures.