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International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp.

346-360, 2014
Available online at http://www.ijsrpub.com/ijsres
ISSN: 2322-4983; 2014 IJSRPUB
http://dx.doi.org/10.12983/ijsres-2014-p0346-0360


346
Full Length Research Paper

Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran

Atikeh Afzali*, Kaka Shahedi, Mahmoud Habib Nezhad Roshan, Karim Solaimani, Ghorban Vahabzadeh

Sari Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University, Watershed Management Department, Sari, Iran,
* Corresponding author: E-mail: afzali_atikeh@yahoo.com, +989113006807

Received 13 July 2014; Accepted 24 August 2014

Abstract. Evaluation of groundwater quality is an important issue to assure from its safe and stable use. However, describing
quality conditions is generally difficult considering spatial variability of pollutants and a wide range of indicators (biological,
physical and chemical substances) which can be measured. In this research, groundwater quality of Haraz alluvial fan located
in southern part of Caspian Sea has been investigated using Piper, Scholler, Wilcox and GQI methods. Piper diagram (a
graphical representation of a water sample chemistry) results showed that groundwater type and facies of Calcium bicarbonate
in 29 wells and sodium bicarbonate in 2 wells. Scholler diagram shows moderate to acceptable quality of water and with
Wilcox method it has been determined that all water samples (100%) are in C3S1 Class that Indicate high water quality.
Investigation of water samples with GQI method also showed that the study area in terms of the indicator is in range of
moderate to good quality (71.83 82.26).

Keywords: Groundwater quality, Piper method, Scholler method, Wilcox method, GQI

1. INTRODUCTION

Increasing population growth and rising living
standards in many countries necessitate higher quality
water resources for various uses as agriculture,
industry and drinking (Rahmani, 2010). In this way
groundwater resources have been considered as
valuable reserves and infrastructure developing
countries, also tried to understand the capabilities of
these resources and their usage can be found
(Mohamahi et al., 2011). Groundwater is almost
globally important for human consumption as well as
for the support of habitat and for maintaining the
river's base-flow. It is usually of excellent quality.
Being naturally filtered in their passage through the
ground, they are usually clear, colorless, and free from
microbial contamination and require minimal
treatment (Babiker et al., 2007). Water quality with
respect to path length and abundance of soluble
ingredient can be very different in various regions
(Mahdavi, 2011).
A groundwater threat is now posed by an ever-
increasing number of soluble chemicals from urban
and industrial activities and from modern agricultural
practices. Nevertheless, landslides, fires and other
surface processes that increase or decrease infiltration
or that expose or blanket rock and soil surfaces
interacting with downward-moving surface water,
may also affect the quality of shallow groundwater
(Babiker et al., 2007). Aquifers face with different
risks such as declining their levels, reduced recharge
due to lack of rainfall and normal and abnormal
pollutants, so groundwater quality monitoring is
extremely important (Mohamadi et al., 2011).
Chemical composition of groundwater is measured
to determine its suitability as a source for human use
and animal consumption, irrigation, industrial
purposes and the others. Water quality refers to the
physical, chemical, and biological characteristics that
are required for water uses. Therefore, water quality
monitoring is important because clean water is
essential for human health and integrity of aquatic
ecosystems (Hiyama, 2010). Also quality evaluation
will be clear vision to specialists and managers of
groundwater quality trends and risk of contamination
of water resources (Nakhaei et al., 2009).
There are several methods to determine water
quality, the most common method to assess water
quality for drinking purpose, is Scholler diagram, that
provides possibility of water study at a certain point in
the area, but, the spatial variability of groundwater
quality cannot be evaluated by this diagram, For this
reason, Babiker et al. (2007) has introduced
Groundwater Quality Index (GQI), which is used to
evaluate spatial variability of groundwater quality
(Rahmani et al., 2011).
Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
347
In assessing of water quality for agriculture,
Wilcox method is a common method, (Devi Oinam et
al., 2012).
Piper diagram indicate chemical characteristics of
water in terms of relative concentrations of the major
cations and anions. Through its application, it is
possible to determine type and frequency of
components of the solution.
Groundwater chemistry patterns in the phreatic
aquifer of the central Belgian coastal plain using Piper
diagram were determined. In the region, main
processes determining general water quality are
Cations exchange, carbonate mineral dissolution and
oxidation of organic matter (Vandenbohede and
Lebbe, 2012). In Geochemical and analysis evaluation
of groundwater in Imphal and Thoubal district of
Manipur, India, Wilcox plot and USSL diagrams were
used to study spatial and temporal variability in
groundwater quality. The study reflected the overall
suitability of groundwater for human use (Devi Oinam
et al., 2012). Hydro-geochemistry of groundwater
with Using 25 water samples analysis with Piper
diagram in parts of the Ayensu Basin of Ghana
indicated that dominant composition of water was Na-
CL and Na-HCO
3
-CL (Zakaria et al., 2012). In
examining the origin and evolution of brine of Iran
Mighan Playa using Piper and Stiff diagrams, which
water inlet type was Na-(Ca)-(Mg) SO
4
-Cl-(CO
3
) and,
during Geochemical evolution and evaporation,
mineral deposition of brine have become Na-Cl-SO
4

type (Abdi and Rahimpoor Bonab, 2010). Aquifers
quality for drinking purpose in Dargaz, Iran, was
assessed by using GQI index and Scholler method.
GQI index changed between 66 to 86 and indicated
moderate to good groundwater quality for drinking.
But with using Scholler method, water samples are in
good to very unpleasant category (Sayyad et al.,
2011). Hydro geochemical study of water in Chegart
mine using graphical and statistical analysis showed
that using conventional graphical methods such as
Piper and Stiff diagrams for classification of water
samples, is efficient, especially in the case of few
data, (Eslamzadeh and Morshedi, 2011). Groundwater
quality determined using GQI index in Nasuno basin,
Japan showed good water quality. In this study, the
GQI value was more than 90 (Babiker et al., 2007).
For groundwater vulnerability assessment using GQI
index in Nasuno, Japan, Hiyama (2010) concluded
that water quality was good and GQI index was 83.
In the study area, due to the proximity to the
Caspian Sea, close to the surface of the groundwater
level, doing agricultural operations and the suitability
of soil, groundwater quality degradation is more
likely. Thus groundwater quality was evaluated using
Piper, Wilcox, Scholler, and GQI methods. Evaluation
of groundwater quality in combination with the
above-mentioned methods were commonly accepted
in the world for determining water quality for
agriculture and drinking uses, give more
comprehensive information of groundwater quality in
Haraz alluvial fan and provide condition for better
management of this valuable resource and sustainable
usage is possible.

2. MATERIAL AND METHODS

2.1. Study area

Haraz alluvial fan located between Caspian Sea in
northern part and Alborz Mountain from southern part
and surrounds Amol and Mahmoodabad cities. This
region was located between 52

19

E and 52

35


E Longitudes and 36

24

N and 36

39

40

N
latitudes and latitudes. Haraz River is the main river
of this area. The study area in terms of geology
contains Sandy coastline (QT2C) and agricultural
Clay of covered areas (QC) (Fig 1).
Chemical analysis of water samples provides much
information which are useful for many practical
problems such as study of mixing of waters from
different sources, groundwater quality condition,
effect of different structures on water quality,
investigation of origin of salinity.
In this research, 31 wells with complete records in
terms of Electrical conductivity (EC), Total dissolved
solids (T.D.S), logarithm of the hydrogen ion activity
(Ph), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Sodium (Na),
Potassium (K), Bicarbonate (HCO
3
), Chlorine (CL),
Carbonate (CO
3)
, and Sulfate (SO
4
) during 1998 until
2006 were used and their data converted to mg/l
(Table 1). Then data were analyzed in Excel. Excel is
capable of just analyzing of 23 wells data and draws
the diagrams. Thus, in this project at the first stage, 20
wells data with the name of 1 were given to the
software and in the next stage data of 11 remained
wells with the name of 2 for data analyzing and graph
drawing entered in the software. These two names (1,
2) are visible on the top of the diagram. GQI method
was performed in ARCGIS.

2.2. HYDROCHEMISTRY GRAPHICAL
METHODS FOR CATEGORICAL DATA

2.2.1. Piper method

Piper diagram is made of combination of three
different fields that implements anions and cations
percentage in triangle fields and their combined
condition in rhombus Square. Percentages are
calculated in terms of equivalent in millions of main
ions.

International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
348
2.2.2. Wilcox method

Today, the most common method for water
classification in terms of agriculture is Wilcox
(Mahdavi, 2011). In this classification, two factors
considered (The Electrical Conductivity and Sodium -
adsorption ratio) and each of them are divided to four
parts that totally results in the emergence of 16 water
quality groups. In Wilcox diagram S is indicator of
Sodium - adsorption ratio and C is representative of
Electrical Conductivity. The larger are the indices; the
worse is condition of water quality.


Fig. 1: Study area with location of wells, city and regional geology

2.2.3. Scholler method

Scholler diagram is a graphical method for drinking
water quality classification. In this diagram, studied
waters are divided into 6 groups including good,
acceptable, average, inappropriate, generally
unpleasant and not-potable. The most important water
quality parameters for classification in terms of
drinking suitability using Scholler diagram are the
main water-soluble salts including Anions and
Cations, Total Dry Residue and Total Hardness of
water resources (Sayad et al . , 2011) . The Total
Dissolved Solids (TDS) is an effective parameter in
the taste of drinking water. The water that has TDS
lower than 500 mg, in terms of drinking standards, is
considered as very good water. TDS between 500 and
1000 is favorable and TDS value from 1000 to 1500 is
allowed for drinking but above 1500 mg is not
suitable (Dindarlou et al., 2006).

Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
349
Table 1: The parameters used to assess water quality
number Well Name EC T.D.S pH Ca
2+
Mg
2+
Na
+
K
+
HCO
3
-

CO
3
2
-

Cl
-
SO
4
2-

1 Kharabmahale 1182.7 745.9 7.3 96.1 38.0 76.8 1.4 465.6 0.000 64.1 95.5
2 Hoseynabad 811.7 541.1 7.4 73.8 29.0 47.2 1.0 353.2 0.000 32.7 70.7
3 Khardon kola amol 1037.3 673.4 7.3 83.8 33.0 76.9 1.3 392.0 0.000 68.2 92.2
4 Aghozbin 790.4 521.9 7.2 78.9 26.2 40.3 1.3 357.2 0.000 23.9 65.1
5 Kolodeh 1218.9 775.7 7.3 102.3 39.2 76.9 1.5 453.6 0.005 66.0 118.7
6 Kasemdeh 764.8 511.8 7.3 75.6 26.3 39.6 1.0 364.6 0.006 23.9 49.3
7 Yamchi 1201.8 759.4 7.3 103.3 37.6 75.7 1.6 436.6 0.011 67.5 126.3
8 Kola safa 1304.3 819.3 7.3 112.3 40.9 81.0 1.6 481.2 0.022 61.9 140.8
9 Police rah amol 1005.6 649.6 7.3 92.8 36.1 44.6 1.3 378.8 0.000 40.4 109.6
10 Skandeh 885.1 583.8 7.3 81.1 31.1 49.4 1.2 394.9 0.005 31.8 68.0
11 Rodbar 995.3 644.5 7.4 82.8 31.6 71.0 1.3 401.1 0.000 34.6 107.5
12 No kola 757.8 506.3 7.5 74.1 27.6 37.0 1.0 348.0 0.026 25.0 55.6
13 Sharm kola 815.6 538.2 7.4 82.6 28.8 39.3 1.0 352.8 0.000 28.6 79.3
14 Balamirdeh 952.9 619.4 7.3 88.5 33.9 49.0 1.3 415.1 0.000 29.7 84.1
15 Pasha kola 901.1 595.7 7.4 86.1 28.4 54.0 1.2 376.6 0.000 39.6 86.1
16 Heshtelpaeen 934.9 612.9 7.2 92.1 33.0 45.0 1.2 397.5 0.395 32.3 90.7
17 Afrasara 975.3 632.2 7.3 93.1 32.0 50.6 1.3 424.8 0.000 28.8 83.6
18 Eshkar kola 1327.0 832.3 7.2 115.3 39.8 82.8 1.8 499.2 0.011 57.2 142.4
19 Sorkh rood 766.2 508.0 7.4 79.6 26.2 36.6 1.0 333.4 0.000 31.2 66.5
20 Darvishkheyamol 1271.1 804.2 7.2 109.6 40.6 77.1 1.7 447.5 0.000 58.3 157.9
21 Spi kola 1269.8 810.2 6.9 111.8 42.4 74.8 1.9 492.0 0.000 58.4 131.3
22 Marzango 956.5 633.6 7.5 75.1 27.9 77.8 1.3 330.4 0.032 65.6 107.6
23 Bonehkenar 1008.9 649.6 7.3 92.8 31.8 59.0 1.3 417.4 0.000 39.6 94.2
24 Shariat kola 1414.3 897.0 7.2 101.1 42.3 113.3 2.1 476.8 0.006 94.1 147.7
25 Ghiyas kola 1362.9 859.9 7.3 123.1 42.3 76.9 1.7 472.9 0.000 62.8 169.3
26 Form 1444.5 902.1 7.4 117.4 43.8 98.4 2.4 510.2 0.000 82.6 154.1
27 Karon 1277.1 803.4 7.3 103.2 36.2 92.4 1.7 430.4 0.000 83.4 132.0
28 Talikran 1617.6 1014.5 7.2 114.0 42.6 145.5 2.1 520.1 0.000 142.6 146.0
29 Roz kenar 2042.0 1305.2 7.2 119.8 45.3 206.7 2.5 521.7 0.000 241.2 205.5
30 Darya kenar 1049.5 686.5 7.4 87.5 32.7 75.9 1.3 394.3 0.000 87.6 69.5
31 Rodbast 1368.1 870.3 7.4 111.8 40.2 100.0 1.7 511.8 0.000 71.9 140.7
EC (Siemens/cm), T.D.S(mg/l), Ca(mg/l), Mg(mg/l), Na(mg/l), K(mg/l), HCO
3
(mg/l), CO
3
(mg/l), Cl(mg/l), SO
4
(mg/l).
Each data is annual average of per Parameter in each well.


Fig. 2: Piper Diagram (1) Fig. 3: Piper Diagram (2)

International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
350
Table 2: Types and facies in Piper method
Abbreviation Location of
sampling
Concentration of
anions
Concentration of
cations
Type of
water
Water
facies
Type & facies
W1 Kharab mahale HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W2 Hoseyn abad HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W3 Khardon kola amol HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W4 Aghozbin HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W5 Kolodeh HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W6 Kasemdeh HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W7 Yamchi HCO3 > SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W8 Kola safa HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W9 Police rah amol HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W10 Skandeh HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W11 Rodbar HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W12 No kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W13 Sharm kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W14 Bala mir deh HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W15 Pasha kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W16 Heshtel paeen HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W17 Afra sara HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W18 Eshkar kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W19 Sorkh rood HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W20 Darvish khey amol HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W21 Spi kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W22 Marzango HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W23 Boneh kenar HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W24 Shariat kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W25 Ghiyas kola HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Mg > Na+K Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W26 Form HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W27 Karon HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W28 Talikran HCO
3
> Cl > SO
4
Na+K > Ca > Mg Bicarbonate Sodic Sodic Bicarbonate
W29 Roz kenar HCO
3
> Cl > SO
4
Na+K > Ca > Mg Bicarbonate Sodic Sodic Bicarbonate
W30 Darya kenar HCO
3
> Cl > SO
4
Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate
W31 Rodbast HCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl Ca > Na+K > Mg Bicarbonate Calcic Calcic
Bicarbonate

Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
351

Fig. 4: Wilcox Diagram (1) Fig. 5: Wilcox Diagram (2)


Fig. 6: Scholler Diagram (1) Fig. 7: Scholler Diagram (2)

2.2.4. Groundwater quality index (GQI)

GQI index provides a method for summarizing of
water quality condition that can be obviously notified
to different researchers and also can help to
understand whether total quality of groundwater
components are regarded as a potential threat for
different application of water. In this section, we used
GIS to calculate GQI value, such as other mentioned
diagrams, we used chemical analysis result of 31
samples. In GQI method, six chemical parameters
(T.D.S, Ca, Mg, Na, CL, and SO
4
) that have high
frequencies in groundwater and are important for
human health are compared with WHO standards.
For this purpose, At first step, we provided related
parameter concentration raster map in ARCGIS with
Kriging interpolation of point data and then for having
one common scale with the use of the following
formula, concentrations of each pixel (C) in raster
maps that have been created in the last step, make a
connection with WHO standard of that parameter
(C(WHO)).
C
i-new
= C
i
C(WHO)
i
/ C
i
+ C(WHO)
i
(1)
The results of these unifications are six new maps
with value range from -1 and 1.Concentrations in
these maps are graded between 1 and 10 until graded
map of each parameter was obtained. In these maps, 1
is indicator of good quality of groundwater and 10 is
International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
352
indicator of destruction of groundwater quality.
Indeed, in this unit conversion,-1 in the previous step
map should be converted to 1, 0 to 5 and 1 to 10 in the
graded map. For this purpose, we use the following
Polynomial function for conversion of each pixel of
the previous map (C) to new value (R) )Fig 9, 10, 11,
12, 13, 14) (Babiker et al., 2007).
R=0.5C
2
+4.5C+5 (2)
For the creation of a map that is representative of
all six chemical parameters and showing quantity
condition of groundwater quality compared with
WHO standard, application of GQI index and related
layers parameters were combined (Fig 8).
GQI = 100 ((r
1
w
1 +
r
2
w
2
+...+r
n
w
n
) /N) (3)

W = mean r + 2 (4)
Where r is the maps that obtained from previous
stage and N is final numbers of parameters. For
calculating GQI from various parameters, weight
average is taken. Parameters with higher value (The
difference with the standard) have higher weight and
as a result their Influence is more significant (Hiyama,
2010).


Fig. 8: GQI map

Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
353

Fig. 9: Ca r map



3. RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS

3.1. Piper diagram

Data analysis using Piper diagram from 31 wells
indicated that 29 wells had calcic bicarbonate and two
wells had sodic bicarbonate facies. The dominant
anions wereHCO
3
> SO
4
> Cl (Right triangle), and the
dominant cations were Ca >Na+K> Mg (Left triangle)
(Table 2, Fig 2,3).

3.2. Wilcox method

The results of Wilcox method indicated that 100% of
the wells were located in C3 S1Class, and all
irrigation wells were salty and their applications for
agricultural purpose are permitted (Table 3, 4, Fig 4,
5).




International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
354
Table 3: Water quality for agriculture of the Wilcox method
Abbreviation sampling Location SAR EC Water Class Water quality for agriculture
W1 Kharab mahale 1.67 1182.67 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W2 Hoseyn abad 1.17 811.684 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W3 Khardon kola amol 1.79 1037.26 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W4 Aghozbin 1 790.389 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W5 Kolodeh 1.63 1218.89 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W6 Kasemdeh 1 764.833 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W7 Yamchi 1.62 1201.79 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W8 Kola safa 1.66 1304.28 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W9 Police rah amol 0.99 1005.58 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W10 Skandeh 1.18 885.105 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W11 Rodbar 1.68 995.3 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W12 No kola 0.93 757.842 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W13 Sharm kola 0.95 815.579 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W14 Bala mir deh 1.12 952.895 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W15 Pasha kola 1.29 901.105 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W16 Heshtel paeen 1.02 934.895 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W17 Afra sara 1.15 975.263 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W18 Eshkar kola 1.69 1327 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W19 Sorkh rood 0.91 766.2 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W20 Darvish khey amol 1.59 1271.11 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W21 Spi kola 1.52 1269.75 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W22 Marzango 1.94 956.474 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W23 Boneh kenar 1.34 1008.89 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W24 Shariat kola 2.38 1414.33 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W25 Ghiyas kola 1.52 1362.89 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W26 Form 1.96 1444.53 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W27 Karon 1.99 1277.06 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W28 Talikran 2.94 1617.63 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W29 Roz kenar 4.07 2041.95 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W30 Darya kenar 1.75 1049.53 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture
W31 Rodbast 2.06 1368.05 C3-S1 Salty - usable for agriculture

Table 4: Percentage of each Wilcox classification class for agricultural purposes
C1 C2 C3 C4
S1 S2 S3 S4 S1 S2 S3 S4 S1 S2 S3 S4 S1 S2 S3 S4
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 100 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Table 5: Water quality classification with Scholler method
GQI TDS TH SO
4
CL Na

Classification of
water quality for
drinking
80 <
500 > 250 > 144 > 177.5 > 115 >
Good
500 1000 250 - 500 144 - 288 177.5 - 350 155 - 230
Acceptable
60 - 80
1000 2000 500 - 1000 288 - 576 350 710 230 - 460
Average
60 >

2000 4000 1000 - 2000 576 - 1152 710 - 1420 460 - 920
Inappropriate
4000 8000 2000 - 4000 1152 - 2340 1420 - 2840 920 - 1840
Completely
inappropriate
8000 < 4000 < 2340 < 2840 < 1840 <
Non-potable

3.3. Scholler method

Schuler diagram results showed acceptable quality for
drinking water (Fig 6,7).






3.4. Groundwater quality index (GQI)

GQI were as follows the maps r (formula 1, 2) and
weight w (formula 4) in the study:
(( ) ( )
( ) ( )
( ) ( ))
Groundwater quality based on the index is in average
rank (table 5).


Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
355

Fig. 10: CL r map

4. CONCLUSIONS

Many researchers have studied the groundwater
quality, and each of them have used different methods
for research (i.e., Abdi et al., 2010, Babiker et al.,
2007, Devi Oinam et al., 2012, Di ndarl o et al . ,
2006, Mohamadi et al . , 2011) , nevertheless,
studies in which different methods are used to assess
water quality, can provide more comprehensive view
of the future management of groundwater. In this
study, groundwater quality was assessed in Haraz
alluvial fan with different methods. As previously
mentioned, by use of Piper diagram water type and its
components can be easily realized. Results of this
diagram represent type and facies of Calcium
bicarbonate in 29 wells and sodium bicarbonate in 2
wells.
Abdi and Rahimpoor bonab (2010), determined
type of Iran
'
s Mighan Playa by Piper diagram. Their
results show Na-SO
4
-Cl type and affecting Factor for
final solution are: Precipitation, Evaporation and
Reaction of meteoric waters with rocks in the basin.
Nakhaei et al. (2009), determined type of groundwater
quality and qualitative evolution by using Piper
diagram, and concluded dominant type of Torbat
Heydariye plain of Iran is was sodium chloride and in
some areas was sodic sulphate and dominant hydro
chemical type of plain is functions of lithology,
dissolution strength, and flow pattern. Zakaria et al.
(2012) in their research used Piper diagrams to
determine water quality; they stated that dominant
type of water is in effect of soluble salts in soil layers
and the decomposition of organic material.
Studying by Wilcox diagram suggested that 100%
of data are in C3S1 class that was indicator of water
with moderate quality and application of this water
was suggested in irrigation of coarse lands with good
drainage.
International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
356
Scholler diagram is a traditional method that
parameters are separately evaluated, final quality is
determined by the worst quality and its parameters are
fixed. In this study, Scholler diagram showed
acceptable water quality in most wells that could be
used as drinking water. Water quality with GQI values
between 71.8 and 82.3 is acceptable (Table 3). The
number and type of parameters in this method is
completely optionaland this enables the researcher to
suggest that qualitative changes in accordance with
the needs and problems of each region. Babiker et al
in 2007 expressed GQI index in Nasuno basin, Japan
was more than 90. Hiyama (2010) was concluded GQI
in Nasuno, Japan 83. Sayyad et al. (2011) results show
that GQI index changed between 66 to 86.


Fig. 11: Mg r map

With regard to presented results, we can state that
almost all the methods represented acceptable
groundwater quality of studied area for drinking and
agriculture. It can be due to abundant rainfall, low
evaporation, and the region being as alluvial fan,
which causes water transfer from upstream the Alborz
Mountains to downstream through Haraz River.
In evaluation of groundwater, the goal is water
quality investigation and planning for sustainable
application of these sources. With regard to relatively
acceptable quality of this area, appropriate application
of this vital resource is suggested. This research has
been done with using data from 9-year period.
However, due to the vicinity and similarly of different
wells data, the results of this research can be the same
with the result of groundwater analyzed in each year
of this period. Also, the study was not done in recent
years, was due to the lack of reliable data.

Afzali et al.
Groundwater Quality Assessment in Haraz Alluvial Fan, Iran
357

Fig. 12: Na r map




ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

We appreciate the assistance of Mr Morteza Shabani
from GIS labratory in Watershed Management
Department at Sari that helped us to learn how use
GIS to draw maps and Mr Adel Khashave and Dr
Mehran Nor Mohamad Por Omran that helped us for
editing this paper.

International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
358

Fig. 13: TDS r map

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Fig. 14: SO
4
r map

International Journal of Scientific Research in Environmental Sciences, 2(10), pp. 346-360, 2014
360



Atikeh Afzali is currently PhD student in the field of watershed management in the department of
natural resources at Sari University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Iran. She received
her associate degree from Ferdowsi Mashhad University in 2001 in Range and Watershed
Management. She obtained degree in Bachelor in Restoration of desert from Yazd University of Iran
(2005) and Master degree in Tehran University of Iran (2008). She is teaching in some branch of
Payame Noor University since 2009 in Natural Resources Faculty.





Kaka Shahedi earned his phd degree in hydrology and quantitative water management from
Wageningen University and Research center, the Netherlands, in 2008. He is currently assistant
professor in Watershed Management Department, Sari University of Agricultural Science and Natural
Resources University, Iran.
E-mail: k.shahedi@sanru.ac.ir






Mahmoud Habibnejad is Professor at the Sari Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University
(SANRU), Watershed Management Department. His research area is watershed hydrology. He received
his Ph.D in hydrology from University of Provenc, France in 1994. He is chief editor for Journal of
Watershed Management Research published by SANRU.
E-mail: roshanbah@yahoo.com






Karim Solaimani is currently Professor and the head of RS and GIS lab in Sari Agricultural Sciences and
Natural Resources University, Sari, Iran, where he serves as a faculty member since 1997. He received
his Ph.D. in Remote Sensing and Environmental Sciences from Glasgow University, U.K. in 1997.
E-mail: Solaimani2001@yahoo.co.uk








Gorban Vahabzadeh earned his PhD degree in Economic Geology from Shahid Beheshti University of
Tehran, Iran, in 2007. He is currently assistant professor in Watershed Management Department, Sari
University of Agricultural Science and Natural Resources University, Iran