- Model 401 - Waterloo Multilevel Groundwater Monitoring System

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Waterloo System - Model 401 - Waterloo Multilevel Groundwater Monitoring System

The Waterloo System is used to obtain groundwater samples, hydraulic head measurements, and permeability measurements from up to 7 discretely isolated zones in a single borehole. They provide 3D data of contaminant flow and concentrations, cost savings through fewer drilled holes, and accurate data for site interpretation and assessment. Systems are customized to meet the needs of each product.

The Waterloo System is used to obtain groundwater samples, hydraulic head measurements and permeability measurements from many discretely isolated zones in a single borehole.

The Waterloo System originated with Dr. John Cherry at the Groundwater Institute of the University of Waterloo in 1984. Ongoing development of the System by Solinst has taken place on a continuous basis since then, with encouragement and suggestions from Dr. Cherry.

Detailed 3-D Data

When a number of Waterloo Systems are used at a site, they allow detailed three-dimensional groundwater information to be obtained at a reasonable cost. Fewer drilled holes are an advantage and monitoring times are reduced.

The simple modular system is customized for the needs of each project. This allows monitoring zones to be placed at desired depths using options suitable for either bedrock, overburden or combination applications and with either permanent or removable systems.

Discrete zone monitoring is the only means of obtaining accurate data for site interpretation and assessments. Transects of multilevels provide the detailed data necessary to calculate mass flux and conservatively assess risk to receptors.


  • Detailed data of flow and concentrations
  • Data integrity
  • Reduced project costs
  • Purging and sampling times reduced
  • Fewer drilled holes
  • Reduced site disturbance
  • Variety of monitoring options


  • Overburden or Bedrock Installations
    • Allow monitoring of multiple zones in any geologic setting
  • Permanent Waterloo Packers
    • Excellent in bedrock or cased holes
    • Engineered for permanent seals
  • Removable Hydraulic Packers
    • Reuse at new zones or locations
    • Easy decommissioning

Why Multilevels

Superior quality of data is obtained when monitoring a series of discrete isolated intervals at various depths in a single borehole. The detailed information provided by Multilevels in the form of horizontal and vertical flow, in conjunction with discrete zone sampling for contaminants, is ideal for accurate site assessments.
  • Biases with Long Screened Wells
    • Contaminant mixing over long screens masks vertical variations resulting in underestimating the aerial extent of plumes and diluting the true concentration of contaminants.
    • Ambient vertical flow within the well has potential to transmit contaminants to previously isolated zones.
  • Detailed Multilevel Data – Advantages
    • Transects of Multilevels across a groundwater flow path provide the best data to use for Mass Flux calculations. This has proven to be an important tool for site assessments that require realistic estimates of maximum contaminant concentration/risk to receptors.
    • Optimize performance of in-situ remediation by using detailed 3-D data from a series of Multilevels. Subsequently, transects can be used to evaluate the success of the chosen remediation option and any improvements.
  • Economics
    • Proven cost reductions for drilling and sediment disposal
    • Savings, both in field personnel time and disposal costs, when purge volumes are reduced. The discrete interval that a Multilevel port encompasses allows for smaller purge volumes, rapid responses to level changes and is ideal for low flow sampling techniques.

The Waterloo System

The System uses modular components which form a sealed casing string of various casing lengths, packers, ports, a base plug and a surface manifold. This allows accurate placement of ports at precise monitoring zones.

Monitoring tubes attached to the stem of each port individually connect that monitoring zone to the surface. The standard system is built on 2' (50 mm) Sch. 80 PVC to fit 3'- 4” (75 - 100 mm) boreholes and uses 3 ft. (915 mm) long packers. Stainless steel components, custom packer materials and sizes, Teflon® tubing are available. 

Solinst Canada Ltd.
Solinst Canada Ltd.
35 Todd Rd.
Georgetown ,  Ontario L7G 4R8


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