Water wells play an increasingly important role in providing water for the civilian population all over the world. Like other engineering structures, wells are subject to ageing processes resulting in degradation, which is observed as a reduction in hydraulic efficiency throughout their lifespan. To date, it has been found that the ageing process of a well is determined by a number of factors. The mathematical description of this process can be simplified. Drawing on Jacob’s equation, this paper presents the course of the degradation process as a variable depending on operation time, well loss and flow rate. To apply the determined relationships in practice, simplifying assumptions were adopted, which make it possible to determine the moment of ageing compensations of the degradation processes. It was also demonstrated that the degradation process may be slowed down by the appropriate selection of initial operating parameters. The presented discussion highlights the significance of parameters α
and exponent β
. The relation between hydraulic resistances in an aquifer and in the engineering structure is closely connected with these values. The presented arguments indicate that step drawdown tests provide the necessary information which allows tracking changes in the ageing processes occurring in the engineering structure. The analysis of the drawdown test results makes it possible to determine the moment when the necessary adjustments in the operating parameters of a water well should be performed. Eventually, it allows maintaining the high hydraulic efficiency of the intake and extending the lifespan of the well in accordance with the principle of sustainability.
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