Hickory Aqufier to get 6 new wells

- Drilling for six new wells at the McCulloch County Hickory Aquifer site is underway.

At the Hickory pipeline, contractors are drilling, tripping out a drill stem pipe for the well, and bringing more pipes to the project.

"What has to happen is this well has to be drilled for total depth, that has occurred. They are now in the process of draining the hole out," stated Assistant Water Director, Kevin Krueger.

It is all a part of developing the well. When the six new wells are completed, they will be connected to the same 62 mile pipeline that connects the Hickory Aquifer to the new San Angelo Water Treatment Plant that the nine existing wells are already connected to.

Each of the combined wells will be able to pump 500 gallons of water a minute or 720-thousand gallons of water a day.

"We're at the Hickory well field and what we have behind us is the electrical control building for well number six," Krueger said. "This building contains the electrical controls and it also contains instruments that tell us how much water is being pumped from this well and how much water is going into the ground water storage tank behind us."

That tank is there because one of the nine existing wells is higher than the rest, it is about 90 feet in diameter and can hold half-a-million gallons of water.

"Well, well 6 is typical of all of the wells on the well field except for the existence of this ground storage tank. It is one of the highest wells in this well field. So, we installed a groundwater storage tank to give us space to produce water and monitor the level in the well field prior to pumping the well field to the city," continued Krueger.

This electrical building controls the electricity that runs the well. There is a communication system with a tower that sends information back to San Angelo updating engineers on the status of the pipeline and the groundwater storage tank.  It also relays data on well six which is two-thousand-five hundred and seventy feet deep.

"We collect the data about how much water is going down to the well and how much water the well is pumping, what's the elevation in the well and the elevation of the water in the storage tank," finished Krueger.

So, if I pushed this button right here, water would move from the well to the groundwater storage tank. This is the first stage in the process of moving the water from the Hickory Aquifer, through the Hickory pipeline, to the city of San Angelo.

The six new wells are expected to be online by March of next year.

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