Junfeng Zhu

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  • Geologist V
  • Earth & Environmental Sciences
316 Mining and Mineral Resources Building
  • Other Affiliations:
Research Interests:

Ph.D., Hydrology, University of Arizona, 2005
M.S., Hydrogeology and Engineering Geology, Nanjing University, China, 1998
B. S., Hydrogeology and Engineering Geology, Nanjing University, China, 1995


Aquifer characterization; groundwater flow and transport modeling; hydrogeophysics, focusing on electrical resistivity; water chemistry modeling; LiDAR applications for karst hydrology.

Selected Publications: 

Rafique, M. U., J. Zhu, & N. Jacobs, 2022, Automatic segmentation of sinkholes using a convolutional neural network. Earth and Space Science, 9, e2021EA002195. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021EA002195.

Al Aamery, N., E. Adams, J. Fox, A. Husic, J. Zhu, M. Gerlitz, C. Agouridis, and L. Bettel, 2021, Numerical model development for investigating hydrologic pathways in shallow fluviokarst, Journal of Hydrology, 593 (2021) 125844, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2020.125844.

Zhu, J., A. M. Nolte, N. Jacobs, and M. Ye, 2020, Using machine learning to identify karst sinkholes from LiDAR-derived topographic depressions in the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky, Journal of Hydrology, 588 (2020) 125049, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2020.125049.

Zhang, X., J. Zhu, O. Wendroth, C. Matocha, and D. Edwards. 2019. Effect of macroporosity on pedotransfer function estimates at the field scale. Vadose Zone J. 18:180151. doi:10.2136/vzj2018.08.0151

Bandy A. M., K. Cook, A.E. Fryar, J. Zhu, 2019, Differential transport of Escherichia coli isolates compared to abiotic tracers in a karst aquifer, Groundwater, doi: 10.1111/gwat.12889.

Zhu, J., Parris, T. M., Taylor, C. J., Webb, S. E., Davidson, B., Smath, R., Richardson, S. D., Molofsky, L. J., Kromann, J. S. and Smith, A. P. 2017, Assessing Methane in Shallow Groundwater in Unconventional Oil and Gas Play Areas, Eastern Kentucky. Groundwater. doi:10.1111/gwat.12583.

Zhu, J. and W. P. Pierskalla Jr. 2016, Applying a weighted random forests method to extract karst sinkholes from LiDAR Data, Journal of Hydrology, 533, 343-352, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2015.12.012.

Zhu J., G. A. O’Dell, E. L. Laudermilk, G. Bogosian, J. C. Currens, S. E. Webb, and P. Bogosian, 2016, Locating a Sealed Cave in Kentucky Using Electrical Resistivity Surveys, AIMS Geosciences, 2(1): 32-44, DOI: 10.3934/geosciences.2016.1.32.

Crawford, M. M., Zhu, J., and Webb, S. E. 2015, Geologic, geotechnical, and geophysical investigation of a shallow landslide, eastern Kentucky, Environmental & Engineering Geoscience, doi: 10.2113/EEG-1642.

Sawyer, A. H., Zhu, J., Currens, J. C., Atcher, C., and Binley, A. 2015, Time-lapse electrical resistivity imaging of solute transport in a karst conduit. Hydrological Processes, doi: 10.1002/hyp.10622.

Zhu, J., T.P. Taylor, J.C. Currens, and M.M. Crawford, 2014, Improved karst sinkhole mapping in Kentucky using LiDAR techniques: a pilot study in Floyds Fork Watershed, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, v. 76, no. 3, p. 207–216. DOI: 10.4311/2013ES0135.

Zhu, J., T. M. Parris, J. R. Bowersox, and D. C. Harris, 2013, Modeling CO2–brine–rock interactions in the Knox Group: Implications of a deep carbon storage field test in western Kentucky, Applied Geochemistry, Volume 37, October 2013, Pages 29-42, ISSN 0883-2927, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.apgeochem.2013.07.007.

Zhu, J., J. C. Currens, J. S. Dinger,  2011, Challenges of using electrical resistivity method to locate karst conduits—A field case in the Inner Bluegrass Region, Kentucky, Journal of Applied Geophysics, 75(3), 523-530, doi:10.1016/j.jappgeo.2011.08.009.

Illman, W. A., J. Zhu, A. J. Craig, and D. Yin, 2010, Comparison of aquifer characterization approaches through steady state groundwater model validation: A controlled laboratory sandbox study, Water Resources Research, 46, W04502, doi:10.1029/2009WR007745.

Zhu J., X. Cai, T.-C. J.Yeh, 2009, Analysis of tracer tomography using temporal moments of tracer breakthrough curves, Advances in Water Resources, Volume 32, Issue 3, March 2009, Pages 391-400, ISSN 0309-1708, DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2008.12.001.

Yeh, T.-C. J., and J. Zhu, 2007, Hydraulic/partitioning tracer tomography for characterization of dense nonaqueous phase liquid source zones, Water Resources Research, 43, W06435, doi:10.1029/2006WR004877.

Zhu, J., and T. –C J. Yeh, 2006, Analysis of hydraulic tomography using temporal moments of drawdown recovery data, Water Resources Research, 42, W02403, doi:10.1029/ 2005WR004309.

Zhu, J. and T. –C J. Yeh, 2005, Characterization of aquifer heterogeneity using transient hydraulic tomography, Water Resources  Research, 41, W07028, doi:10.1029/2004WR003790.