Artesian basin

ARTESIAN BASIN (EN: artesian basin; DE: artesisches Becken; FR: bassin artesien; ES: cuenca artesiana; RU: артезианский бассейн) is the basin of the underground waters, which is confined to the negative geological structure (syneclise, trough, downfold, intra-mountainous depression), which is containing the pressurized formation waters. It comprises the sedimentary aquifer cover (mostly of the pre-Quaternary age) and basement with the fracture-veinous waters. There are also developed within the sedimentary cover, besides the pressurized waters, which serve as the source of the water supply, the unpressurized ground waters.

They distinguish within the artesian basin the regions of the feeding, pressurization, and discharge of underground waters. The area of the artesian basin may be from several tens square kilometres to several millions square kilometres. The largest artesian basins within the USSR are the West Siberian artesian basin (the largest within the world), Moscow artesian basin, Baltic artesian basin; the ones abroad are the Great Australian basin, Parisian artesian basin, and others. The operational drilled wells within the artesian basins with excessive pressurization work with the self-flowing of the waters, but with deficient pressurization there are used the submersible pumps.

The development of the useful minerals within the limits of the artesian basins is associated with the protection of the mine workings with the help of the drainage systems against the breach of the pressurized waters; and with the protection of the resources of the artesian waters against the depletion (with the method of the construction of the barrage curtains), and against the contamination with the underground mine (open pit mine) waters.