Assessment of sources and distribution metals in groundwater of Pondicherry region, India

  • Thilagavathi R Department of Earth Sciences, Annamalai University, Annamalainagar, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Chidambaram S Water Research Center, Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, Kuwait
  • Thivya C Department of Geology, Madras University, Tamil Nadu, India.
  • Banajarani Panda Department of Earth Sciences, Annamalai University, Annamalainagar, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Ganesh N Department of Earth Sciences, Annamalai University, Annamalainagar, Tamil Nadu, India
Keywords: Heavy metals, Groundwater, Statistical analysis, GIS


The proposed study investigates the seasonal variation in the concentration and the source of the heavy metals like Mn, Cu, Pb, Zn and Fe in the groundwater samples of Pondicherry region. The study results reveal that, the heavy metal concentration is high during South West Monsoon season (SWM) compared to that of North East Monsoon season (NEM). The pH was near neutral and metal load representing most of the samples were low during NEM. Statistical analysis shows that the 63.7 % of the total variance is observed during NEM and 68.9% during SWM. Geographic information system (GIS) tool was considered for the study to understand the environmental pollution status of the groundwater systems of the study area and to identify the groundwater quality parameters. The multivariate statistical analysis explains that the source of trace metal in the groundwater is derived from natural origin except copper and lead as these contaminants were derived from anthropogenic activities. Based on the output of WATEQ4F, several species of heavy metals exist, in which the dominant species are Mn, CuCl2, PbCO3, Fe and Zn.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...


P. Singh, A.K. Tiwari, P.K. Singh. Hydrochemical characteristic and quality assessment of groundwater of Ranchi township area, Jharkhand, India. Current World Environment. 9 (2014) 804–813.

S. Chandra, P.K. Singh, A.K. Tiwari, B. Panigrahy, A. Kumar. Evaluation of hydrogeological factor and their relationship with seasonal water table fluctuation in Dhanbad district, Jharkhand, India. ISH Journal of Hydraulic Engineering. 21 (2015) 193–206.

N.S. Magesh, N. Chandrasekar, L. Elango. Trace element concentrations in the groundwater of the Tamiraparani river basin, South India: insights from human health risk and multivariate statistical techniques. Chemosphere. 185 (2017) 468–479.

T. Batayneh. Heavy metals in water springs of the Yarmouk Basin, North Jordan and their potentiality in health risk assessment. International Journal of the Physical Sciences 5 (2010) 997-1003.

X.S. Zheng, A.H. LU, X. Gao. Contamination of heavy metals in soil present situation and method. Soils and Environmental Sciences, 11 (2002) 79-54

C. Singaraja, S. Chidambaram, K. Srinivasamoorthy, P. Anandhan, S. Selvam. A study on assessment of credible sources of heavy metal pollution vulnerability in groundwater of Thoothukudi districts, Tamilnadu, India. Water Quality, Exposure and Health. 7 (2015) 459–467.

P. Kavcar, A. Sofuoglu, S.C. Sofuoglu, A health risk assessment for exposure to trace metals via drinking water ingestion pathway. International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health. 212 (2009) 216–227.

Z. Karim, Risk assessment of dissolved trace metals in drinking water of Karachi, Pakistan. Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 86 (2011) 676-678. 0261-8

S. Pethaperumal, S. Chidambaram, M.V. Prasanna, V.N. Verma, K. Balaji, R. Ramesh, U. Karmegam, P. Paramaguru. A study on groundwater quality in the Pondicherry region. Eco-Chronicle. 3 (2008) 85-90

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, M.V. Prasanna, C. Thivya, C. Singaraja. A study on groundwater geochemistry and water quality in layered aquifers system of Pondicherry region, southeast India. Applied Water Science, 2 (2012) 253-269.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, C. Thivya, M.V. Prasanna, C. Singaraja, K. Tirumalesh, S. Pethaperumal. Delineation of natural and anthropogenic process controlling hydrogeochemistry of layered aquifer sequence. Proceedings of the national academy of sciences, 84 (2014a) 95 – 108.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, C. Thivya, M.V. Prasanna, S. Pethaperuamal, K. Tirumalesh. A Study on the Behaviour of Total Carbon and Dissolved Organic Carbon in Groundwaters of Pondicherry Region, India. International Journal of Earth Sciences and Engineering, (2014b) 1537-1550, ISSN 0974-5904, 07, 04.

Thilagavathi, R., Chidambaram, S., Prasanna, M.V., Pethaperumal. S. A study on the interpretation of spontaneous potential and resistivity logs in layered aquifer sequence of Pondicherry Region, South India. Arabian Journal of Geosciences,7 (2013a) 3715–3729.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, A.L. Ramanatahan, M.S. Rao, M.V. Prasanna, K. Tirumalesh, S. Pethaperumal. An attempt to evaluate the influence of geomorphology on the hydrogeology of coastal aquifer. Journal of Indian Geomorphology, 18 (2013b) 103–114. ISSN:0973-2411.

S. Chidambaram, M.V. Prasanna, U. Karmegam, C. Singaraja, S. Pethaperumal, R. Manivannan, P. Anandhan, Tirumalesh. Significance of pCO2 values in determining carbonate chemistry in groundwater of Pondicherry region, India. Frontiers of Earth Science, 5 (2011) 197–206.

K. Tirumalesh. Characterization of Groundwater in the Coastal Aquifers of Pondicherry Region Using Chemical, Isotopic and geochemical Modelling Approaches. Unpublished thesis. (2012)

K. Tirumalesh, K.L. Ramakumar, M.B.K. Prasad, S. Chidambaram, P. Perumal, D. Prakash, N. Nawani, Microbial evaluation of groundwater and its implications on redox condition of a multi-layer sedimentary aquifer system. Environmental Processes. 2 (2015) 331e346.

S. Pethaperumal, Study on groundwater chemistry in the Pondicherry region. Ph.D. thesis, Annamalai University, India. (2010).

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, C. Thivya, M.V. Prasanna, K. Tirumalesh, S. Pethaperumal. Assessment of groundwater chemistry in layered coastal aquifers using multivariate statistical analysis. Sustainable Water Resources Management, 3 (2017a) 55–69.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, Banaja Rani Panda, K. Tirumalesh, Devaraj, N. Anil Kurmana. Understanding the Decadal Variation of the Groundwater Resources along the Coastal Aquifers of Pondicherry – A Climate Change Perspective. Journal of Climate Change, 3 (2017b) 25–42. DOI 10.3233/JCC-170012.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, C. Thivya, K. Tirumalesh, S. Venkatramanan, S. Pethaperumal, M V. Prasanna, N. Ganesh. Influence of variations in rainfall pattern on the hydrogeochemistry of coastal groundwater—an outcome of periodic observation. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 26 (2019).

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, S. Pethaperuamal, C. Thivya, M.S. Rao, K. Tirumalesh, M.V. Prasanna. An attempt to understand the behaviour of dissolved organic carbon in coastal aquifers of Pondicherry region, South India. Environmental earth sciences, 75 (2016a) 235.

R. Thilagavathi, S. Chidambaram, C. Thivya, M.V. Prasanna, K. Tirumalesh, S. Pethaperuamal. Dissolved Organic Carbon in Multilayered Aquifers of Pondicherry Region (India): Spatial and Temporal Variability and Relationships to Major Ion Chemistry. Natural Resources Research, (2016b). DOI: 10.1007/s11053-016-9306-3.

American Public Health Association (APHA) (1998). Standard methods for the examination of water and waste. Washington, DC, USA: Am. Public Health Assoc.

M. V. Prasanna, S. M. Praveena, S. Chidambaram, R. Nagarajan, A. Elayaraja. Evaluation of water quality pollution indices for heavy metal contamination monitoring: a case study from Curtin Lake, Miri City, East Malaysia. Environmental Earth Sciences. 67 (2012) 1987–2001 DOI 10.1007/s12665-012-1639-6.

M. V. Prasanna, S. Chidambaram, A. Shahul Hameed, K. Srinivasamoorthy. Study of evaluation of groundwater in Gadilam basin using hydrogeochemical and isotope data. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 168 (2010) 63–90. DOI 10.1007/s 10661-009-1092-5

M. V. Prasanna, S. Chidambaram, S. Pethaperumal, K. Srinivasamoorthy, A. John Peter, P. Anandhan, M. Vasanthavigar. Integrated geophysical and chemical study in the lower subbasin of Gadilam River, Tamilnadu, India. Environmental Geosciences, 15 (2008) 145–152.

WHO (2006) Guidelines for drinking-water quality, 3rd edn. World Health Organization, Geneva.

USEPA (2009) National primary drinking water regulations. Federal register, EPA816-F-09-004. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington.

BIS (2003) Indian standard drinking water specifications IS 10500:1991, edition 2.2 (2003–2009). Bureau of Indian Standards,New Delhi

D. Senthil Nathan, R. Manil Kumar, S. Sivamurthy Reddy, M. A. Sivasankaran, R. Ramesh. Trace Elements in Groundwater of Coastal Aquifers of Pondicherry Region, India, Journal of Environment. 1 (2012)111-118. ISSN 2049-8373.

D.P. Tripathy. Determination of trace elements concentration and trace elements index in mine water in some fire and non-fire affected areas of Jharia coalfield, India. Pollution Research. 29 (2010) 385–390.

M.K. Mahato, P.K. Singh, A.K. Tiwari. Evaluation of metals in mine water and assessment of heavy metal pollution index of East Bokaro Coalfield area, Jharkhand, India. International Journal of Earth Sciences and Engineering. 7 (2014) 1611–1618

A. Senapaty, P. Behera. Concentration and distribution of trace elements in different coal seams of the Talcher coalfield, Odisha. International Journal of Earth Sciences and Engineering. 5 (2012) 80–87

J. D. Hem. Study and Interpretation of the Chemical Characteristics of Natural Water. U.S. Geological Survey, Water Supply paper 2254. (1989)

Leung, Chi-Man, Jiao, Jiu. Heavy Metal and Trace Element Distributions in Groundwater in Natural Slopes and Highly Urbanized Spaces in Mid-Levels Area, Hong Kong. Water research. 40 (2006) 753-767. 10.1016/j.watres.2005.12.016.

Y. Yi, Z. Wang, K. Zhang, G. Yu, X. Duan. Sediment pollution and its effect on fish through food chain in the Yangtze River. International Journal of Sediment Research. 23 (2008) 338–347.

D.J. Ficklin, G.S. Plumee, K.S. Smith, J.B. McHugh. Geochemical classification of mine drainages and natural drainages in mineralized areas. International symposium on water-rock interaction, Balkema, Rotterdam, 7 (1992) 381–384.

R. Caboi, R. Cidu, L. Fanfani, P. Lattanzi, P. Zuddas. Environmental mineralogy and geochemistry of the abandoned Pb–Zn Montevecchio- Ingurtosu mining district, Sardinia, Italy. Chron Rech Miniere. 534 (1999) 21–28.

Armanuos M, Abdelazim Negm, Oliver C. Saavedra Valeriano. Groundwater Quality Investigation Using Multivariate Analysis — Case Study: Western Nile Delta Aquifer, Egypt. International Journal of Environmental Science and Development, 7 (2016) 732.

S. Chidambaram, U. Karmegam, M. V. Prasanna, P. Sasidhar. A study on evaluation of probable sources of heavy metal pollution in groundwater of Kalpakkam region, South India. Environment Systems and Decisions. 32 (2012) 371–382. DOI 10.1007/s10669-012-9398-1

Y. Guo, Q. Zhou, J. Xie, D. Ou, Q. Lai, R. Chen, X. He.. Toxicity of heavy metals in river sediments to aquatic organisms. 1. Toxicity of various forms of lead to fishes. Acta hydrobiologica sinica/Shuisheng Shengwu Xuebao. Wuhan, 15 (1991) 234-241.

Fu Liao, Guangcai Wang, Zheming Shi, Xujuan Huang, Fangfei Xu, Qingyu Xu, Liang Guo Distributions, Sources, and Species of Heavy Metals/Trace Elements in Shallow Groundwater Around the Poyang Lake, East China, Exposure and Health. 10 (2017). DOI 10.1007/s12403-017-0256-8.

How to Cite
R, T.; S, C.; C, T.; Panda, B.; N, G. Assessment of Sources and Distribution Metals in Groundwater of Pondicherry Region, India. ijceae 2020, 2, 33-53.

Views: Abstract : 50 | PDF : 22

Plum Analytics