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By Jürgen Klein

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3). In the unconfined aquifer water fills only a part of the ground mass and the groundwater table is free to rise and decline. The water level in a well will indicate the approximate position of the water table in the surroundings. A confined aquifer is completely filled with water and is overlain by confining layers. The water level in a well in a confined aquifer will rise above the bottom of the confining layer to a height at which it is in balance with atmospheric pressure (piezometric surface).

The solution of buffering compounds such as carbonates leads to decreased pH values in the pore and seepage water and thus to an increased mobilization potential for most inorganic contaminants. The pH value serves as a master variable determining the solubility and the sorption properties of almost all heavy metals (CREMER,1991).

Rocks, therefore, provide a natural barrier function, which also can effectively prevent the spreading of anthropogenically introduced contaminants. The different reactions and their contribution to the processes during substance transport will be described in Sects. 2. 1 Structure of the Transport Matrix Different processes contribute in variable amounts to the transport of contaminants, depending on the properties of the aquifer. In principle, transport by general movement of the groundwater (advection, dispersion), and substance transport due to a concentration gradient (diffusion) are differentiated (see Sect.

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