Artesian springs or wells are formed by underground water that is water under pressure and when tapped will emerge to the earth’s surface with more force than would an underground water source without pressure. Although sometimes spoken of as artesian wells, those wells that have been drilled into the rock or clay to get water are not technically artesian wells, although it’s possible to hit an artesian water source, or aquifer, when drilling for water.
If the pressure is intense, then the water may spew up rather than gush. Depending on the force by which the stream of water is forced upward, they gurgle and spew and spout. To listen to the sound one makes and to see the picture of the gauzy waters as they dance in the air before it lands into the spring below, go online to this video presentation by YouTube, to look and listen.
There are places under the earth that are natural sources for this type of water and they are called artesian basins. Underneath twenty-three percent of the artesian basins. From these, water is supplied to most of Queensland; the southeast portion of the Northern Territory; the northeast part of South Australia, and northern New South Wales. Also these basins are 10,000 feet deep and contain 64,000 cubic centimeters of ground water.
Some artesian wells occur on their own and will find outlets whenever the water finds an opening such as crack in the rocks covering the water or the rock can be drilled into to allow an escape of the water below. Since naturally warm water, or any water if there is sufficient pressure underneath, goes upward, any escape route will be welcomed to relieve the pressure below. The same principle that is behind artesian well is the principle that causes earthquakes; the difference being the relatively minor effects of the water pressure and the tremendous pressure and the agitation and destructiveness of earthquakes.
Both are simply nature’s way of venting. An analogy: the cry of a baby as compared to the roar of thunder, and the flash of lightening. The type of soil, magma and the underground constituents add to the ferocity of the larger expulsion.
Crushed rocks that soak up water and are squeezed in-between hard, impenetrable rocks and clay are necessary for artesian wells. Neither will budge and the water will use any hole in the gravel to escape. The name artesian tells the facts about the wells. Artois, France is place where the Carthusian Monks, in 1126, had an artesian well drilling business.
Whether or not it was a business or a means of supplying themselves with water is not well understood; history only tells of a cloistered group of religious Catholic men who discovered these wells and because of it were able to secure land for their monastery. The land was relatively inexpensive because there was no water supply.
In the United States, as elsewhere in the world, playground and spas and hotels have sprung around artesian wells and springs. One is at Sulphur, Oklahoma; another is at Artesian Springs, Texas. Also, artesian water is bottled and sold. Eden Foods is one supplier. Places in the United States where artesian basins occur to some degree are, Nevada, Michigan, Washington, Tennessee, Alabama and Illinois. There may be others.