Characterization of Groundwater and Distribution of Fluoride in the Eastern Region of the Algerian Northern Sahara (Ouargla)

Document Type : Original Research Paper


Laboratory of Water Engineering and Environment within the Saharian milieu, Department of Hydraulic and Civil Engineering, Faculty of Applied Sciences, University of Kasdi Merbah Ouargla, PO Box 511, 30000 Ouargla, Algeria.


In the eastern region of the Algerian Northern Sahara, the groundwater is the only resource for drinking water supply and irrigation. This study aimed to assess the physical-chemical quality of groundwater with exposition of the fluoride distribution in the eastern region of Algeria taking as case study Ouargla area. The sampling campaign was carried out in such a way to cover the exploited aquifers (Miopliocene and Senonian).  Water temperature, pH, conductivity, hardness, alkalinity, principal ions (Sodium, Potassium Calcium, Magnesium, Bicarbonates, Nitrates, Sulfates, and Chlorides) and the fluoride content in the groundwater were measured and determined. Examination and validation of obtained results were by the use ionic balance method and the hydrochemical analysis by Piper, Stabler and Richards diagrams. The obtained results of our study show that the groundwater of the Ouargla area presents a chlorinated sodium and potassium facies. Moreover, the groundwater quality in the study area is of poor quality; it is hard and characterized by very high mineralization, The Richards' diagram indicates that the groundwater of the study area are unsuitable for irrigation. The spatial distribution of fluoride ions in groundwater of the terminal complex shows that fluoride levels in Ouargla exceed the World Health Organization standard.


Main Subjects

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