Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Skip to content

Dissolved Gas and Tracer Concentrations for the High Plains Aquifer, Vertical Flowpath Study Network

Metadata Updated: October 28, 2023

This data release documents three Microsoft Excel tables that contain data for understanding environmental tracer concentrations in groundwater of the High Plains aquifer system. Results of dissolved-gas modeling using environmental tracer concentrations (tritium, tritiogenic helium-3, and radiogenic helium-4), for the sample network (VPFS, vertical flow path study) are described. Dissolved gas modeling results (ModOut) contains detailed information on the calibration of dissolved gas models to measured dissolved-gas concentrations (neon, argon, krypton, xenon, and nitrogen). Calibration was done using methods described by Aeschbach-Hertig and others (1999 & 2000) with modifications to include nitrogen gas (Weiss, 1970). In most cases, a single set of noble-gas concentrations (neon, argon, krypton, and xenon) was used to solve for recharge conditions (recharge temperature, excess or entrapped air, and fractionation) using the unfractionated excess air (UA) and closed equilibration (CE) models (Aeschbach-Hertig and others, 1999 & 2000). In cases where noble gas data were not available, multiple analyses of nitrogen and argon (collected sequentially on the same sample date) were used to solve for recharge conditions. Environmental tracer results (TrcOut) contains detailed information on calculations of environmental tracer data. Dissolved gas models were paired with measured helium isotope ratios (3He/4He) and helium concentrations to calculate concentrations of tritiogenic helium-3 (the component of 3He derived from tritium decay; Solomon and Cook, 2000) and radiogenic helium-4 (the component of 4He derived from the decay of uranium and thorium in aquifer materials; Solomon, 2000). Tracer concentrations were computed for each combination of measure dissolved gas concentrations when sites had multiple measured gas results and analyses for helium isotopes. Average environmental tracer results (AvgTrcOut) contains average tracer concentrations for a given site used for determination of groundwater ages. Aeschbach-Hertig, W., F. Peeters, U. Beyerle, and R. Kipfer (1999), Interpretation of dissolved atmospheric noble gases in natural waters, Water Resour. Res., 35(9), 2779–2792, Aeschbach-Hertig, W., F. Peeters, U. Beyerle, and R. Kipfer (2000), Paleotemperature reconstruction from noble gases in ground water taking into account equilibration with entrapped air, Nature, v. 405, Iss. 6790, pg. 1040-1044, Solomon, D.K., and P.G. Cook. 2000. 3H and 3He. In Environmental Tracers in Subsurface Hydrology, ed. P.G. Cook and A.L. Herczeg, 197-424. Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers. Solomon, D.K. 2000. 4He in groundwater. In Environmental Tracers in Subsurface Hydrology, ed. P.G. Cook and A.L. Herczeg, 425-439. Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers. Weiss, R. F., 1970, The solubility of nitrogen, oxygen, and argon in water and seawater, Deep Sea Research, vol. 17, pp. 721-735,

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

Downloads & Resources


Metadata Created Date June 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date October 28, 2023

Metadata Source

Harvested from DOI EDI

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date June 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date October 28, 2023
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Identifier USGS:5d3721ece4b01d82ce8a6d57
Data Last Modified 20200827
Category geospatial
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 010:12
Metadata Context
Metadata Catalog ID
Schema Version
Catalog Describedby
Harvest Object Id 01a5e80d-2f45-4ffb-a22a-92b2e84e1be5
Harvest Source Id 52bfcc16-6e15-478f-809a-b1bc76f1aeda
Harvest Source Title DOI EDI
Metadata Type geospatial
Old Spatial -99.1,40.0,-96.85,41.25
Publisher Hierarchy White House > U.S. Department of the Interior > U.S. Geological Survey
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash 71ed6b6cd3266abd66f153d11befb12a00e00c8977705a9eb5c6397519c193e3
Source Schema Version 1.1
Spatial {"type": "Polygon", "coordinates": -99.1, 40.0, -99.1, 41.25, -96.85, 41.25, -96.85, 40.0, -99.1, 40.0}

Didn't find what you're looking for? Suggest a dataset here.