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Dr. Patrick Morrissey

Post-doctoral Researcher
Dept. of Civil, Structural & Environmental Engineering


Groundwater Flood Modelling in a Karst Environment

Keywords: Ireland, karst, groundwater flooding, numerical modelling, climate change, hydrogeolgical modelling


Flood risk management is seen as a major challenge facing communities across Ireland. Of particular relevance to the geoscience community is the phenomenon of groundwater flooding, which represents a significant flood hazard for many rural communities. Groundwater flooding is primarily associated with lowland karst groundwater flow systems in the west of Ireland. The combination of low storage, high transmissivity and widespread groundwater surface water interaction leaves these systems particularly susceptible to groundwater flooding. The main mechanism of this flooding is through seasonal groundwater lakes called turloughs, which are features of the karst landscape of western Ireland.

This project is a collaboration between the TCD and the GSI to provide flooding and hydrogeological information that will enable various groundwater flood mitigation measures to be simulated and identify whether solutions to such flooding can be developed. The main goal of the project is to develop modelling/analysis methodologies for estimating groundwater flood frequency and the assessment of potential flood mitigation strategies for designated areas. These models will then be used to analyse the potential impact of climate change on turlough hydrological functioning and groundwater flooding.


Principal Investigator: Prof. Laurence Gill