Shallow geophysical techniques to investigate the groundwater table at the Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

Sharafeldin S. M., Essa K. S., Youssef M. A. S., Karslı H., Diab Z. E., Sayil N.

GEOSCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENTATION METHODS AND DATA SYSTEMS, vol.8, no.1, pp.29-43, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


The near-surface groundwater aquifer that threatened the Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt, was investigated using integrated geophysical surveys. A total of 10 electrical resistivity imaging, 26 shallow seismic refraction, and 19 ground-penetrating radar surveys were conducted in the Giza Plateau. Collected data for each method were evaluated by state-of-the art processing and modeling techniques. A three-layer model depicts the subsurface layers and better delineates the groundwater aquifer and water table elevation. The resistivity of the aquifer layer and seismic velocity vary between 40 and 80 Omega m and between 1500 and 2500 m s(-1), respectively. The average water table elevation is about +15 m, which is safe for the Great Sphinx, but it is still subjected to potential hazards from the Nazlet El-Samman suburb where the water table elevation reaches 17 m. A shallower water table at the Valley Temple and the tomb of Queen Khentkawes, with a low topographic relief, represents severe hazards. It can be concluded that a perched groundwater table is detected in the elevated topography to the west and southwest that might be due to runoff and capillary seepage.