Jordan Journal of Civil Engineering

Leakage in Bayer Dam in Jordan: Its Causes and Consequences


Hani Al-Omosh; Mohammad Al-Farajat; Franz Zunic;


This research deals with engineering and environmental problems in karst in a geological context. In this study, geologic and geomagnetic investigations have been applied at the site of Bayer dam and revealed severe shallow karstic processes prevailing in the limestone bedrock – under a three meters thick alluvium cover – which forms the unsealed floor of the dam. The measurements done on groundwater of local ancient shallow dug wells in the surrounding of the dam showed the occurrence of fresh water which was attributed to the leakage that took place. The named wells have been known previously to be dry. The quality of the collected water in the shallow aquifer is prone to drinking purposes. Saturation indices of minerals point to that the leaked water is under-saturated with respect to calcite, gypsum, aragonite, magnesite, dolomite and anhydrite. This emphasizes that more leakage of water through the narrow passages of joints and fissures in the rocks will accelerate karstic processes in the area. This enhances the secondary permeability of the shallow aquifer and calls for groundwater artificial recharge in the area, but on the other hand and with the presence of the prevailing cavities it threatens the dam, unless scientific solutions are found.


Karstification, Geomagnetic method, Groundwater recharge.