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Professor Alan Fryar

Kentuckians have long appreciated the importance of ground water. The city of Lexington, home of the University of Kentucky, was founded in 1775 around McConnell Springs, now a city park and nature preserve. Hydrogeologic studies by the Kentucky Geological Survey, one of the University's research institutes, date to 1857, when Robert Peter published the Second Chemical Report of the Ores, Rocks, Soils, Coals, Mineral Waters, etc. of Kentucky.

The academic program in hydrogeology at the University of Kentucky began in 1965, when Dr. John Thrailkill joined the faculty of the Department of Geology (now the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences). In 1982, Dr. Lyle Sendlein joined the Department as Director of the Kentucky Water Resources Research Institute. Professors Thrailkill and Sendlein retired in 1992 and 1998, respectively. Current faculty members in hydrogeology include Dr. Alan Fryar, Associate Professor, and Dr. Junfeng Zhu, Adjunct Assistant Professor and staff member in the KGS Water Resources Section.

Faculty members in the Departments of Plant and Soil Sciences, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Civil Engineering, and Forestry and Natural Resources also conduct research and teach courses on various aspects of hydrology. Areas of emphasis across the University include contaminant fate and transport, interactions between ground water and surface water, karst and coal-field hydrogeology, and hydrology of forested and agricultural watersheds.


Gore's Spring, Mercer County (?), circa 1890-1904

Source: Ford Photo Album Collection, University of Louisville Libraries (used with permission). Copyright 1999 University of Louisville. All rights reserved.

Todd McFarland monitoring Blue Hole Spring, Versailles, Woodford County, 2000