An integrated research approach consisting of hydrogeologic and geochemical methods was applied to a coastal aquifer in the Ostia Antica archaeological park, Roma, Italy, to describe freshwater–saltwater interactions. The archaeological park of Ostia Antica is located on the left bank of the Tevere River delta which developed on a morphologically depressed area. The water monitoring program included the installation of multiparametric probes in some wells inside the archaeological area, with continuous measurement of temperature, electrical conductivity, and water table level. Field surveys, water sampling, and major elements and bromide analyses were carried out on a seasonal basis in 2016. In order to understand the detailed stratigraphic setting of the area, three surface boreholes were accomplished. Two distinct circulations were identified during the dry season, with local interaction in the rainy period: an upper one within the archaeological cover, less saline and with recharge inland; and a deeper one in the alluvial materials of Tevere River, affected by salinization. Oxygen and carbon isotopic signature of calcite in the sediments extracted from the boreholes, along with major elements and Br concentration, allowed us to recognize the sources of salinity (mainly, local interaction with Roman salt pans and agricultural practices) and the processes of gas–water–rock interaction occurring in the area. All these inferences were confirmed and strengthened by PCA analysis of physicochemical data of groundwater.
Bonamico, M., Tuccimei, P., Mastrorillo, L., Mazza, R. (2021). Freshwater–saltwater interactions in a multilayer coastal aquifer (Ostia antica archaeological park, central Italy). WATER, 13(13), 1866 [10.3390/w13131866].