WorldWideScience

Sample records for arid vadose zone

  1. Non-isothermal water flow in the vadose zone of arid and semi-arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallants, Dirk; Gerke, Kirill; Cook, Peter

    2013-04-01

    In desert environments thermally-driven vapour flow can be an important component of the total water flux in soils. As such, vapour flow can have considerable impact on recharge estimation, with small errors in soil water flow rates resulting in relatively larger errors in the recharge estimates since recharge is a very small fraction of rainfall. The additional effects of vegetation and temperature contributions may also impact soil water movement and thus calculated recharge rates in arid and semi-arid vadose zones. Currently most methods for estimating large-scale recharge rates do not consider these various processes, which adds an unknown degree of uncertainty to recharge estimation. The HYDRUS-1D numerical simulator was used to simulate coupled isothermal liquid, isothermal vapour, non-isothermal liquid and vapour flow, and heat flow in deep variably saturated vadose zones. The considered climatic conditions are characteristic of central Australia with approximate mean annual precipitation and potential evapotranspiration rates of 300 and 3000 mm, respectively. A time series of 130 years of daily climate data provides the upper boundary conditions. Groundwater recharge under highly erratic rainfall conditions is hypothesized to be primarily episodic and linked to flood events which may be significant only once every few years. The combined effect of vegetation and temperature on water flow and soil water redistribution is discussed for both vegetated and bare soils.

  2. Ecotonal Control on Vadose-Zone Fluxes in Arid Regions Over Very Long Time Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, F. M.; Walvoord, M. A.; Sandvig, R.

    2003-12-01

    Recent studies indicate that vegetation plays an important role in regulating recharge in semiarid and arid basins over very long time scales. Several lines of evidence from desert floor environments in the southwestern United States suggest that vegetation has established essentially permanent upward hydraulic gradients, effectively precluding diffuse recharge since the transition from woodland to xeric scrub in the early Holocene. However, less xeric vegetation (such as the pygmy piñon and juniper forest) may support significant diffuse recharge. We show comparative water potential and porewater chemistry profiles collected from various vegetation communities in the Chihuahuan Desert of west Texas. The modeled soil water (vapor and liquid) flux regimes illustrate a conversion from substantial downward fluxes under the mixed woodland to upward fluxes under grassland and xeric scrub. Model results also indicated a trend in increasing drying front propagation depth from the grassland to recently-encroached xeric scrub to well-established xeric scrub. Drying fronts are the result of upward soil water fluxes initiated up to 16 thousand years ago in the xeric scrub community. In contrast, the nearby woodland community supports active, and likely episodic, recharge on the order of 5 to 15 mm yr-1. The mechanism by which some vegetation takes up essentially all seasonally available moisture within the root zone, preventing downward soil water fluxes for periods of thousands of years, but adjacent vegetation communities regularly permit downward fluxes, remains to be determined. Nevertheless, these results suggest that understanding the relation between vegetation community and vadose-zone hydrological processes may be the most profitable avenue toward quantifying diffuse groundwater recharge. We hypothesize that vegetation type may be a reasonable proxy for estimating recharge in semiarid and arid basins. Ongoing research is intended to test the hypothesis of ecotonal

  3. Underground Corrosion of Activated Metals in an Arid Vadose Zone Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The subsurface radioactive disposal site located at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory contains neutron-activated metals from nonfuel nuclear-reactor- core components. A long-term corrosion test is being conducted to obtain site-specific corrosion rates to support efforts to more accurately estimate the transfer of activated elements in an arid vadose zone environment. The tests use nonradioactive metal coupons representing the prominent neutron-activated material buried at the disposal location, namely, Type 304L stainless steel, Type 315L stainless steel, nickel-chromium alloy (UNS NO7718), beryllium, aluminum 6061-T6, and a zirconium alloy, (UNS R60804). In addition, carbon steel (the material presently used in the cask disposal liners and other disposal containers) and a duplex stainless steel (UNS S32550) (the proposed material for the high- integrity disposal containers) are also included in the test program. This paper briefly describes the test program and presents the early corrosion rate results after 1 year and 3 years of underground exposure

  4. LONG-TERM COLLOID MOBILIZATION AND COLLOID-FACILITATED TRANSPORT OF RADIONUCLIDES IN A SEMI-ARID VADOSE ZONE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Markus Flury; James B. Harsh; Fred Zhang; Glendon W. Gee; Earl D. Mattson; Peter C. L

    2012-08-01

    The main purpose of this project was to improve the fundamental mechanistic understanding and quantification of long-term colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated transport of radionuclides in the vadose zone, with special emphasis on the semi-arid Hanford site. While we focused some of the experiments on hydrogeological and geochemical conditions of the Hanford site, many of our results apply to colloid and colloid-facilitated transport in general. Specific objectives were (1) to determine the mechanisms of colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated radionuclide transport in undisturbed Hanford sediments under unsaturated flow, (2) to quantify in situ colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated radionuclidetransport from Hanford sediments under field conditions, and (3) to develop a field-scale conceptual and numerical model for colloid mobilization and transport at the Hanford vadose zone, and use that model to predict long-term colloid and colloid- facilitated radionuclide transport. To achieve these goals and objectives, we have used a combination of experimental, theoretical, and numerical methods at different spatial scales, ranging from microscopic investigationsof single particle attachment and detachment to larger-scale field experiments using outdoor lysimeters at the Hanford site. Microscopic and single particle investigations provided fundamental insight into mechanisms of colloid interactions with the air-water interface. We could show that a moving air water interface (such as a moving water front during infiltration and drainage) is very effective in removing and mobilizing particles from a stationary surface. We further demonstrated that it is particularly the advancing air-water interface which is mainly responsible for colloid mobilization. Forces acting on the colloids calculated from theory corroborated our experimental results, and confirm that the detachment forces (surface tension forces) during the advancing air-water interface

  5. Analysis of impacts to groundwater and the vadose zone at an arid-region landfill in San Bernardino County, California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ten years of vadose zone gas and groundwater monitoring data for the Apple Valley Sanitary Landfill (AVSL), an arid-region municipal solid waste landfill in San Bernardino County, California, were examined to evaluate the nature, extent, and source of releases from this landfill. Landfill gas (LFG) was found to be the primary impact mechanism where groundwater degradation was demonstrated, and LFG contributions can be differentiated from other impact mechanisms. Because volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are the main groundwater contaminant at the AVSL, they were the main focus of this investigation, although inorganic compounds are also of significant interest. Groundwater impacts by liquid releases from seepage waste impoundments were also confirmed at the AVSL, while indications of impact by landfill leachate were not strongly supported. Monitoring data at this and other arid-region landfills, where rainfall is generally less than 255 mm per year and groundwater is relatively deep, show a lack of impact to groundwater from landfill leachate. The methods used to distinguish impact mechanisms at the AVSL are readily applicable to other sites as well

  6. Water and Vapor Transfer in Vadose Zone of Gobi Desert and Riparian in the Hyper Arid Environment of Ejina, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, C.; Yu, J.; Wang, P.

    2014-12-01

    To reveal how water and vapor transfer in vadose zone affect evapotranspiration in Gobi desert and riparian in hyper arid region is important for understanding eco-hydrological process. Field studies and numerical simulations were imported to evaluate the water and vapor movement processes under non isothermal and lower water content conditions. The soil profiles (12 layers) in Gobi desert and riparian sites of Ejina were installed with sensors to monitor soil moisture and temperature for 1 year. The meteorological conditions and water table were measured by micro weather stations and mini-Divers respectively in the two sites. Soil properties, including particles composition, moisture, bulk density, water retention curve, and saturated hydraulic conductivity of two site soil profiles, was measured. The observations showed that soil temperatures for the two sites displayed large diurnal and seasonal fluctuations. Temperature gradients with depth resulted in a downward in summer and upward in winter and became driving force for thermal vapor movement. Soil moistures in Gobi desert site were very low and varied slowly with time. While the soil moistures in riparian site were complicated due to root distribution but water potentials remained uniform with time. The hydrus-1D was employed to simulate evapotranspiration processes. The simulation results showed the significant difference of evaporation rate in the Gobi desert and riparian sites.

  7. Vadose zone lag time and potential 21st century climate change effects on spatially distributed groundwater recharge in the semi-arid Nebraska Sand Hills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossman, N. R.; Zlotnik, V. A.; Rowe, C. M.; Szilagyi, J.

    2014-11-01

    Deep drainage of water below plant root zones (potential groundwater recharge) will become groundwater recharge (GR) after a delay (or lag time) in which soil moisture traverses the vadose zone before reaching the water table. Depending on the thickness of the vadose zone, the magnitude of deep drainage, and soil hydraulic properties, lag times will vary broadly, exceeding decades to centuries in semi-arid and arid environments. Yet, studies of future climate change impacts to GR have typically avoided focusing on impacts beyond 100 years and often neglect to consider lag effects caused by the vadose zone. We investigate the effects of vadose zone lag time and potential 21st century climate change on the spatial distribution and timing of GR throughout the semi-arid Nebraska Sand Hills (NSH) region (∼50,000 km2). We propose a simple and rapid quantitative approach for assessment of the groundwater system response time to changes in climate. Understanding of such effects is needed for groundwater modeling, analysis of climate change impacts on groundwater, and the effective management and sustainability of future water resources. Lag time estimates are made using the pressure-based vertical velocity of soil moisture changes, equivalent to a kinematic wave approximation of Richards' equation. The underlying assumptions (unit hydraulic gradient and relatively slow changes in climate) are supported by observations in the High Plains aquifer region, encompassing the NSH. The analysis relies on four sources of input data, including: Spatially distributed high resolution (1.1-km) GR rates (as the difference in 2000-2009 mean precipitation and evapotranspiration-estimated using a novel MODIS-based approach); thickness of the vadose zone-based on 30-m digital elevation models of the land surface and water table elevations; statistically downscaled estimates of future (2010-2099) potential GR rates from two hydroclimate model projections (WRCP CMIP3) with opposing GR

  8. Contaminants in Vadose Zone Environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Freshley, Mark D.; Johnson, Timothy C.; Miracle, Ann L.

    2012-11-01

    Contaminants in vadose zone environments pose a long-term source and threat to groundwater resources, human health, and the environment. Several technical, regulatory, and policy challenges and opportunities are associated with contamination in vadose zone environments, particularly in remediation. In this special issue, ten papers present novel approaches to characterize, monitor, remediate, and predict the transport and fate of contaminants in vadose zone environments.

  9. A soil vapor extraction pilot study in a deep arid vadose zone. Part 1: field study summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Non-radioactive liquid chemical waste was disposed at Material Disposal Area (MDA) L within Technical Area 54 (TA-54) at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) from the early 1960's until 1985. Three surface impoundments, one pit, and 34 vertical shafts comprise the MDA L disposal facilities. None of the disposal areas were lined. Under LANL's Environmental Program, extensive sampling and analysis have been conducted to characterize the vadose zone beneath MDA L and to determine the nature and extent of contaminant releases from the former disposal units. The major contaminant release at the site is a subsurface organic solvent vapor-phase plume consisting primarily of several chlorinated volatile organic compounds (CVOCs) including 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCA), trichloroethene (TCE), Freon, tetrachloroethene (PCE). TCA was found in the greatest concentration, constituting the majority of the plume mass, and it also exhibits the greatest lateral and vertical extent in the organic vapor plume. A numerical model to characterize the subsurface plume has been developed based on the site conceptual model and refined using data from ongoing compliance monitoring. The primary goal of the pilot test was to provide information necessary to determine the effectiveness of SVE as a treatment method for the VOC vapor plume. To achieve this objective, commercially available SVE equipment meeting functional requirements established by previous vapor extraction testing and extensive vadose zone characterization activities was leased, temporarily installed, and operated at each of two test extraction wells in sequence. Granular activated carbon was used to treat the SVE emissions. Subsurface vapor monitoring captured the reduction in soil vapor concentrations and subsurface pressure changes. Active extraction was conducted from extraction wells constructed near the source term over a two-month period, resulting in the removal of more than 800 lbs of VOCs. Rebound monitoring was

  10. Appraisal of nuclear waste isolation in the vadose zone in arid and semiarid regions (with emphasis on the Nevada Test Site)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An appraisal was made of the concept of isolating high-level radioactive waste in the vadose zone of alluvial-filled valleys and tuffaceous rocks of the Basin and Range geomorphic province. Principal attributes of these terranes are: (1) low population density, (2) low moisture influx, (3) a deep water table, (4) the presence of sorptive rocks, and (5) relative ease of construction. Concerns about heat effects of waste on unsaturated rocks of relatively low thermal conductivity are considered. Calculations show that a standard 2000-acre repository with a thermal loading of 40 kW/acre in partially saturated alluvium or tuff would experience an average temperature rise of less than 1000C above the initial temperature. The actual maximum temperature would depend strongly on the emplacement geometry. Concerns about seismicity, volcanism, and future climatic change are also mitigated. The conclusion reached in this appraisal is that unsaturated zones in alluvium and tuff of arid regions should be investigated as comprehensively as other geologic settings considered to be potential repository sites

  11. Appraisal of nuclear waste isolation in the vadose zone in arid and semiarid regions (with emphasis on the Nevada Test Site)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wollenberg, H.A.; Wang, J.S.Y.; Korbin, G.

    1983-05-01

    An appraisal was made of the concept of isolating high-level radioactive waste in the vadose zone of alluvial-filled valleys and tuffaceous rocks of the Basin and Range geomorphic province. Principal attributes of these terranes are: (1) low population density, (2) low moisture influx, (3) a deep water table, (4) the presence of sorptive rocks, and (5) relative ease of construction. Concerns about heat effects of waste on unsaturated rocks of relatively low thermal conductivity are considered. Calculations show that a standard 2000-acre repository with a thermal loading of 40 kW/acre in partially saturated alluvium or tuff would experience an average temperature rise of less than 100{sup 0}C above the initial temperature. The actual maximum temperature would depend strongly on the emplacement geometry. Concerns about seismicity, volcanism, and future climatic change are also mitigated. The conclusion reached in this appraisal is that unsaturated zones in alluvium and tuff of arid regions should be investigated as comprehensively as other geologic settings considered to be potential repository sites.

  12. Soil moisture transport in arid site vadose zones. [Evaluation of Hanford as national site for radioactive waste storage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brownell, L.E.; Backer, J.G.; Isaacson, R.E.; Brown, D.J.

    1975-07-01

    Data are presented from measurements of soil moisture at the Hanford Reservation. Possible mechanisms for moisture transport in arid and semi-arid climates were studied. Measurements for the lysimeter experiment and the thermocouple psychrometer experiment were continued with a new series of measurements using closely spaced sensors installed to a depth of 1.52 meters. During the 1973-1974 water year the percolation envelope of higher moisture content penetrated to a depth of four meters in the closed-bottom lysimeter and then was eliminated by upward transport of water in late summer. Precipitation during the 1973-1974 water year percolated to a depth of about six meters in the open-bottom lysimeter and remains as a residual perched envelope. The increase over normal percolation was due in part to a residual envelope of higher moisture content from the previous water year. Results obtained indicate the advantages of Hanford as a site for a national repository for radioactive waste. (CH)

  13. Vadose Zone Hydrology and Eco-hydrology in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wenke

    2016-04-01

    Vadose zone hydrology has long been a concern regarding groundwater recharge, evaporation, pollution, and the ecological effects induced by groundwater and water & salt contents in the unsaturated zone. The greater difference between day and night temperatures in arid and semi-arid areas influences water movement and heat transport in the vadose zone, and further influences the water and heat fluxes between the water table and the atmosphere as well as ecological environment. Unfortunately, these studies are lack in a systematic viewpoint in China. One of the main reasons is that the movement of water, vapor and heat from the surface to the water table is very complex in the arid and semi-arid areas. Another reason is lack of long term field observations for water content, vapor, heat, and soil matrix potential in the vadose zone. Three field observation sites, designed by the author, were set up to measure the changes in climate, water content , temperature and soil matrix potential of the unsaturated zone and groundwater level under the different conditions of climate and soil types over the period of 1-5 years. They are located at the Zhunngger Basin of Xinjing Uygur Autonomous Region in northwestern China, the Guanzhong Basin of Shaanxi Province in central China, and the Ordos Basin of the Inner Monggol Autonomous Region in north China, respectively. These three field observation sites have different climate and soil types in the vadose zone and the water table depth are also varied. Based on the observation data of climate, groundwater level, water content, temperature and soil matrix potential in the vadose zone from the three sites in associated with the field survey and numerical simulation method, the water movement and heat transport in the vadose zone, and the evaporation of phreatic water for different groundwater depths and soil types have been well explored. The differences in water movement of unsaturated zone between the bare surface soil and

  14. DEEP VADOSE ZONE TREATABILITY TEST PLAN

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    (smbullet) Treatability test plan published in 2008 (smbullet) Outlines technology treatability activities for evaluating application of in situ technologies and surface barriers to deep vadose zone contamination (technetium and uranium) (smbullet) Key elements - Desiccation testing - Testing of gas-delivered reactants for in situ treatment of uranium - Evaluating surface barrier application to deep vadose zone - Evaluating in situ grouting and soil flushing

  15. Advanced Vadose Zone Simulations Using TOUGH

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Finsterle, S.; Doughty, C.; Kowalsky, M.B.; Moridis, G.J.; Pan,L.; Xu, T.; Zhang, Y.; Pruess, K.

    2007-02-01

    The vadose zone can be characterized as a complex subsurfacesystem in which intricate physical and biogeochemical processes occur inresponse to a variety of natural forcings and human activities. Thismakes it difficult to describe, understand, and predict the behavior ofthis specific subsurface system. The TOUGH nonisothermal multiphase flowsimulators are well-suited to perform advanced vadose zone studies. Theconceptual models underlying the TOUGH simulators are capable ofrepresenting features specific to the vadose zone, and of addressing avariety of coupled phenomena. Moreover, the simulators are integratedinto software tools that enable advanced data analysis, optimization, andsystem-level modeling. We discuss fundamental and computationalchallenges in simulating vadose zone processes, review recent advances inmodeling such systems, and demonstrate some capabilities of the TOUGHsuite of codes using illustrative examples.

  16. Vadose Zone Transport Field Study: Status Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gee, Glendon W.; Ward, Anderson L.

    2001-11-30

    Studies were initiated at the Hanford Site to evaluate the process controlling the transport of fluids in the vadose zone and to develop a reliable database upon which vadose-zone transport models can be calibrated. These models are needed to evaluate contaminant migration through the vadose zone to underlying groundwaters at Hanford. A study site that had previously been extensively characterized using geophysical monitoring techniques was selected in the 200 E Area. Techniques used previously included neutron probe for water content, spectral gamma logging for radionuclide tracers, and gamma scattering for wet bulk density. Building on the characterization efforts of the past 20 years, the site was instrumented to facilitate the comparison of nine vadose-zone characterization methods: advanced tensiometers, neutron probe, electrical resistance tomography (ERT), high-resolution resistivity (HRR), electromagnetic induction imaging (EMI), cross-borehole radar (XBR), and cross-borehole seismic (XBS). Soil coring was used to obtain soil samples for analyzing ionic and isotopic tracers.

  17. Trace Metals in Groundwater and the Vadose Zone Calcite: In Situ Containment and Stabilization of Strontium-90 and Other Divalent Metals and Radionuclides at Arid West DOE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radionuclide and metal contaminants such as strontium-90 are present beneath U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) lands in both the groundwater (e.g., 100-N area at Hanford, WA) and vadose zone (e.g., Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory). In situ containment and stabilization of these contaminants is a cost-effective treatment strategy. However, implementing in situ containment and stabilization approaches requires definition of the mechanisms that control contaminant sequestration. We are investigating the in situ immobilization of radionuclides or contaminant metals (e.g., strontium-90) by their facilitated co-precipitation with calcium carbonate in groundwater and vadose zone systems. Our facilitated approach, shown schematically in Figure 1, relies upon the hydrolysis of introduced urea to cause the acceleration of calcium carbonate precipitation (and trace metal co-precipitation) by increasing pH and alkalinity. Subsurface urea hydrolysis is catalyzed by the urease enzyme, which may be either introduced with the urea or produced in situ by ubiquitous subsurface urea hydrolyzing microorganisms. Because the precipitation process tends to be irreversible and many western aquifers are saturated with respect to calcite, the co-precipitated metals and radionuclides will be effectively removed from the aqueous phase over the long-term. Another advantage of the ureolysis approach is that the ammonium ions produced by the reaction can exchange with radionuclides sorbed to subsurface minerals, thereby enhancing the availability of the radionuclides for re-capture in a more stable solid phase (co-precipitation rather than adsorption)

  18. Microbial reduction of hexavalent Chromium under vadose zone conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliver, D S.(unknown); Brockman, Fred J.(BATTELLE (PACIFIC NW LAB)); Bowman, Robert (VISITORS); Kieft, Thomas L.(BATTELLE (PACIFIC NW LAB))

    2003-01-01

    Hexavalent chromium[Cr(VI)] is a common constituent of wastes associated with nuclear reactor operation and fuel processing. Improper disposal at facilities in arid and semi-arid regions has led to contamination of underlying vadose zones and aquifers. The objectives of this study were to assess the potential for immobilizing Cr(VI) contamination using a native microbial community to reduce soluble Cr(VI) to insoluble Cr(III) under conditions similar to those found in the vadose zone, and to evaluate the potential for enhancing biological reduction of Cr(VI) through the addition of nutrients. Batch microcosm and unsaturated flow column experiments were performed. Native microbial communities in subsurface sediments with no prior Cr(VI) exposure were shown to be capable of Cr(VI) reduction. In both the batch and column experiments, Cr(VI) reduction and loss from the aqueous phase were enhanced by adding high levels of both nitrate (NO3-) and organic carbon (molasses). Nutrient amendments resulted in up to 87% Cr(VI) reduction in unsaturated batch experiments. Molasses and nitrate additions to 15-cm length unsaturated flow columns receiving 65 mg L-1 Cr(VI) resulted in microbially mediated reduction and immobilization of 10% of the Cr during a 45-day experiment. All of the immobilized Cr was in the form of Cr (III), as shown by XANES analysis. This suggests that biostimulation of microbial Cr(VI) reduction in vadose zones by nutrient amendment is a promising strategy; and that immobilization of close to 100% of Cr contamination could be achieved in a thick vadose zone with longer flow paths and longer contact times than in this experiment.

  19. Preliminary study of radioactive waste disposal in the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    To investigate the characteristics of the vadose zone with respect to radioactive waste disposal, the mechanics of unsaturated flow in arid regions and the geohydrology of four areas with a deep water table were studied. The studies indicated that (1) arid sites with a water table deeper than 200 m can be found in at least three distinct geologic settings in the western United States, (2) the physics of unsaturated flow in soils and rock with interstitial porosity at low water contents, particularly under thermal gradients, is not yet completely understood, and (3) under certain conditions unsaturated flow can be so slow that analytic modeling of an unflawed repository is unnecessary to prove effective containment

  20. Vadose Zone Transport Field Study: Summary Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ward, Andy L.; Conrad, Mark E.; Daily, William D.; Fink, James B.; Freedman, Vicky L.; Gee, Glendon W.; Hoversten, Gary M.; Keller, Jason M.; Majer, Ernest L.; Murray, Christopher J.; White, Mark D.; Yabusaki, Steven B.; Zhang, Z. F.

    2006-07-31

    From FY 2000 through FY 2003, a series of vadose zone transport field experiments were conducted as part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology Project, now known as the Remediation and Closure Science Project, and managed by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). The series of experiments included two major field campaigns, one at a 299-E24-11 injection test site near PUREX and a second at a clastic dike site off Army Loop Road. The goals of these experiments were to improve our understanding of vadose zone transport processes; to develop data sets to validate and calibrate vadose zone flow and transport models; and to identify advanced monitoring techniques useful for evaluating flow-and-transport mechanisms and delineating contaminant plumes in the vadose zone at the Hanford Site. This report summarizes the key findings from the field studies and demonstrates how data collected from these studies are being used to improve conceptual models and develop numerical models of flow and transport in Hanford’s vadose zone. Results of these tests have led to a better understanding of the vadose zone. Fine-scale geologic heterogeneities, including grain fabric and lamination, were observed to have a strong effect on the large-scale behavior of contaminant plumes, primarily through increased lateral spreading resulting from anisotropy. Conceptual models have been updated to include lateral spreading and numerical models of unsaturated flow and transport have revised accordingly. A new robust model based on the concept of a connectivity tensor was developed to describe saturation-dependent anisotropy in strongly heterogeneous soils and has been incorporated into PNNL’s Subsurface Transport Over Multiple Phases (STOMP) simulator. Application to field-scale transport problems have led to a better understanding plume behavior at a number of sites where lateral spreading may have dominated waste

  1. Transport of through a Thick Vadose Zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnaud, Emmanuelle; Best, Anna; Parker, Beth L; Aravena, Ramon; Dunfield, Kari

    2015-09-01

    Livestock manure applications on fields can be a source of contamination in water resources, including groundwater. Although fecal indicators like have often been detected in tile drainage systems, few studies have monitored groundwater at depth after manure treatments, especially at sites with a deep, heterogeneous vadose zone. Our hypothesis was that microbial transport through a thick vadose zone would be limited or nonexistent due to attenuation processes, subsurface thickness, and heterogeneity. This study tested this hypothesis by monitoring concentrations beneath a 12-m-thick vadose zone of coarse, heterogeneous glacial sediments after surface application of liquid swine manure. was detected on all 23 sample dates over the 5-mo period (4 Apr. 2012-13 Aug. 2012), with particularly elevated concentrations 1 wk after application and lasting for 5 wk. Variable low-level concentrations before and after the elevated period suggest remobilization and delayed transport of microorganisms to the water table without additional loadings within the flow field. These findings suggest preferential flow pathways allowing deep infiltration of manure bacteria as well as a continued source of bacteria, with variable retention and travel times, over several months. Preferential flow pathways at this site include soil macropores, depression focused infiltration, and pathways related to subsurface heterogeneity and/or fracture flow through finer-grained diamict beds. Further research is needed to confirm the relative contribution of sources, constrain travel times, and define specific transport pathways. PMID:26436260

  2. Calibrating Vadose Zone Models with Time-Lapse Gravity Data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Lars; Hansen, A. B.; Looms, M. C.; Haarder, E. B.; Binning, Philip John; Rosbjerg, Dan; Andersen, Ole Baltazar; Bauer-Gottwein, Peter

    2009-01-01

    experiment on 10m by 10m grass land. Simulation studies show a potential for vadose zone model calibration using gravity data in conjunction with other geophysical data, e.g. cross-borehole georadar. We present early field data and calibration results from a forced infiltration experiment conducted over 30...... hydrogeological parameters. These studies focused on the saturated zone with specific yield as the most prominent target parameter. Any change in storage in the vadose zone has been considered as noise. Our modeling results show a measureable change in gravity from the vadose zone during a forced infiltration...... days and discuss the potential for gravity measurements in vadose zone model parameter estimation....

  3. Optimization of remediation strategies using vadose zone monitoring systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahan, Ofer

    2016-04-01

    In-situ bio-remediation of the vadose zone depends mainly on the ability to change the subsurface hydrological, physical and chemical conditions in order to enable development of specific, indigenous, pollutants degrading bacteria. As such the remediation efficiency is much dependent on the ability to implement optimal hydraulic and chemical conditions in deep sections of the vadose zone. These conditions are usually determined in laboratory experiments where parameters such as the chemical composition of the soil water solution, redox potential and water content of the sediment are fully controlled. Usually, implementation of desired optimal degradation conditions in deep vadose zone at full scale field setups is achieved through infiltration of water enriched with chemical additives on the land surface. It is assumed that deep percolation into the vadose zone would create chemical conditions that promote biodegradation of specific compounds. However, application of water with specific chemical conditions near land surface dose not necessarily results in promoting of desired chemical and hydraulic conditions in deep sections of the vadose zone. A vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS) that was recently developed allows continuous monitoring of the hydrological and chemical properties of deep sections of the unsaturated zone. The VMS includes flexible time-domain reflectometry (FTDR) probes which allow continuous monitoring of the temporal variation of the vadose zone water content, and vadose-zone sampling ports (VSPs) which are designed to allow frequent sampling of the sediment pore-water and gas at multiple depths. Implementation of the vadose zone monitoring system in sites that undergoes active remediation provides real time information on the actual chemical and hydrological conditions in the vadose zone as the remediation process progresses. Up-to-date the system has been successfully implemented in several studies on water flow and contaminant transport in

  4. 1999 vadose zone monitoring plan and guidance for subsequent years

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The US Department of Energy's Hanford Site has the most diverse and largest amounts of radioactive waste in the US. The majority of the liquid waste was disposed to the soil column where much of it remains today. This document provides the rationale and general framework for vadose zone monitoring at cribs, ditches, trenches and other disposal facilities to detect new sources of contamination and track the movement of existing contamination in the vadose zone for the protection of groundwater. The document provides guidance for subsequent site-specific vadose zone monitoring plans and includes a brief description of past vadose monitoring activities (Chapter 3); the results of the Data Quality Objective process used for this plan (Chapter 4); a prioritization of liquid waste disposal sites for vadose monitoring (Chapter 5 and Appendix B); a general Monitoring and Analysis Plan (Chapter 6); a general Quality Assurance Project Plan (Appendix A), and a description of vadose monitoring activities planned for FY 1999 (Appendix C)

  5. Deficiencies in Vadose Zone Understanding at the INEEL

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wood, Thomas Ronald; Bates, Dona Louise; Bishop, Carolyn Wagoner; Heard, Robert Eugene; Hubbell, Joel Michael; Hull, Laurence Charles; Lehman, Richard Michael; Magnuson, Swen O; Mattson, Earl Douglas; Mccarthy, James Michael; Porro, Indrek; Ritter, Paul David; Roddy, Michael Scott; Singler, Robert Edward; Smith, Richard Paul

    2000-08-01

    Subsurface contamination in the vadose zone, that portion of the subsurface pathway between land surface and an underlying aquifer, poses environmental problems at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) in eastern Idaho and across the U.S. Department of Energy complex. Assessing potential adverse impacts from these contaminated sites requires an understanding of the mechanisms controlling contaminant transport. Currently, vadose zone experts at the INEEL cannot with confidence predict the movement of water and contaminants in the complex, heterogeneous, fractured subsurface at the INEEL, especially within the vadose zone. In the draft version (Revision 1) of the Vadose Zone Deficiencies document, deficiencies in scientific understanding of flow and transport processes in the vadose zone at the INEEL were identified and grouped into 13 categories and recommendations were provided to address each of the deficiencies. The draft document provided the basis for an INEEL Vadose Zone Workshop that was conducted October 20 and 21, 1999, in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The workshop was conducted to group and rank the previously identified deficiencies and for the subsequent development of science plans to address the deficiencies that limit reliable predictions of water and contaminant movement in the subsurface. The workshop participants, comprising INEEL and scientists and project managers and non-INEEL scientists knowledgeable about the vadose zone, developed science- and technology-based recommendations derived through a series of technical sessions at the workshop. In this document, the final version of the Vadose Zone Deficiencies document, the draft document has been incorporated, largely intact, as well as the results from the workshop. The workshop participants grouped the deficiencies in vadose zone understanding at the INEEL into seven categories. These seven categories will be the focus areas of five science plans that are being developed to

  6. Integrated Strategy to Address Hanford's Deep Vadose Zone Remediation Challenges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A vast majority of Hanford's remaining in-ground contaminants reside in the vadose zone of the Central Plateau, where reprocessing operations occurred. The vadose zone is comprised of about 75 meters of water-unsaturated sediments above groundwater. These contaminants have, and continue to release into groundwater that discharges to the Columbia River. If left untreated, these contaminants could remain a threat for centuries. Much of this contamination resides deep in the vadose zone, below the effective depth of tradition surface remedy influence. In 2008, the Department of Energy initiated deep vadose zone treatability testing to seek remedies for technetium-99 and uranium contamination. These tests include the application of desiccation for technetium-99 and reactive gas technologies for uranium. To complement these efforts, the Department of Energy has initiated a 'defense-in-depth' approach to address the unique challenges for characterization and remediation of the deep vadose zone. This defense-in-depth approach will implement multiple approaches to understand and control contaminant flux from the deep vadose zone to the groundwater. Among these approaches is an increased investment in science and technology solutions to resolve deep vadose zone challenges including characterization, prediction, remediation, and monitoring.

  7. Integrated strategy to address Hanford's deep vadose zone remediation challenges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A vast majority of Hanford's remaining in-ground contaminants reside in the vadose zone of the Central Plateau, where reprocessing operations occurred. The vadose zone is comprised of about 75 meters of water-unsaturated sediments above groundwater. If left untreated, these contaminants could reach groundwater and could remain a threat for centuries. Much of this contamination resides deep in the vadose zone, below the effective depth of tradition surface remedy influence. In 2008, the Department of Energy initiated deep vadose zone treatability testing to seek remedies for technetium-99 and uranium contamination. These tests include the application of desiccation for technetium-99 and reactive gas technologies for uranium. To complement these efforts, the Department of Energy has initiated a 'defense-in-depth' approach to address the unique challenges for characterization and remediation of the deep vadose zone. This defense-in-depth approach will implement multiple approaches to understand and control contaminant flux from the deep vadose zone to the groundwater. Among these approaches is an increased investment in science and technology solutions to resolve deep vadose zone challenges including characterization, prediction, remediation, and monitoring. (author)

  8. ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT SCIENCE PROGRAM PROJECT NUMBER 87016 CO-PRECIPITATION OF TRACE METALS IN GROUNDWATER AND VADOSE ZONE CALCITE: IN SITU CONTAINMENT AND STABILIZATION OF STRONTIUM-90 AND OTHER DIVALENT METALS AND RADIONUCLIDES AT ARID WESTERN DOE SITES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radionuclide and metal contaminants are present in the vadose zone and groundwater throughout the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) weapons complex. In situ containment and stabilization of these contaminants in vadose zones or groundwater is a cost-effective treatment strategy. Our facilitated approach relies upon the hydrolysis of introduced urea to cause the acceleration of calcium carbonate precipitation (and trace metal coprecipitation) by increasing groundwater pH and alkalinity (Fujita et al., 2000; Warren et al., 2001). Subsurface urea hydrolysis is catalyzed by the urease enzyme, which may be either introduced with the urea or produced in situ by ubiquitous subsurface urea hydrolyzing microorganisms. Because the precipitation processes are irreversible and many western aquifers are saturated with respect to calcite, the co-precipitated metals and radionuclides will be effectively removed from groundwater. The rate at which trace metals are incorporated into calcite is a function of calcite precipitation kinetics, adsorption interactions between the calcite surface and the trace metal in solution (Zachara et al., 1991), solid solution properties of the trace metal in calcite (Tesoriero and Pankow, 1996), and also the surfaces upon which the calcite is precipitating. A fundamental understanding of the coupling of calcite precipitation and trace metal partitioning, and how this occurs in aquifers and vadose environments is lacking. This report summarizes work undertaken during the second year of this project

  9. Optimization of Remediation Conditions using Vadose Zone Monitoring Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahan, O.; Mandelbaum, R.; Ronen, Z.

    2010-12-01

    Success of in-situ bio-remediation of the vadose zone depends mainly on the ability to change and control hydrological, physical and chemical conditions of subsurface. These manipulations enables the development of specific, indigenous, pollutants degrading bacteria or set the environmental conditions for seeded bacteria. As such, the remediation efficiency is dependent on the ability to implement optimal hydraulic and chemical conditions in deep sections of the vadose zone. Enhanced bioremediation of the vadose zone is achieved under field conditions through infiltration of water enriched with chemical additives. Yet, water percolation and solute transport in unsaturated conditions is a complex process and application of water with specific chemical conditions near land surface dose not necessarily result in promoting of desired chemical and hydraulic conditions in deeper sections of the vadose zone. A newly developed vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS) allows continuous monitoring of the hydrological and chemical properties of the percolating water along deep sections of the vadose zone. Implementation of the VMS at sites that undergoes active remediation provides real time information on the chemical and hydrological conditions in the vadose zone as the remediation process progresses. Manipulating subsurface conditions for optimal biodegradation of hydrocarbons is demonstrated through enhanced bio-remediation of the vadose zone at a site that has been contaminated with gasoline products in Tel Aviv. The vadose zone at the site is composed of 6 m clay layer overlying a sandy formation extending to the water table at depth of 20 m bls. The upper 5 m of contaminated soil were removed for ex-situ treatment, and the remaining 15 m vadose zone is treated in-situ through enhanced bioremedaition. Underground drip irrigation system was installed below the surface on the bottom of the excavation. Oxygen and nutrients releasing powder (EHCO, Adventus) was spread below the

  10. A/M Area Vadose Zone Monitoring Plan (U)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Characterization and monitoring data from implementation and the first two and one half years of vadose zone remediation operations indicate that this activity has substantially improved the performance of the A/M Area Groundwater Corrective Action Program. During this period, vadose zone remediation removed approximately 225, 000 lbs (100,000 Kg) of chlorinated solvents (CVOCs) from the subsurface. Further, vadose zone remediation system operation increased the overall CVOC removal rate of the A/M Area Groundwater Corrective Action by 300% to 500% during this period versus the groundwater pump and treat system along. Various support activities have been performed to support operation and documentation of performance of the vadose zone remediation system. These activities address performance of existing systems (contaminant distributions, zone of influence, and process monitoring data), evaluation of suspect sources, evaluation of alternative/enhancement technologies, and initial development of remediation goals. In particular, the most recent A/M vadose zone remediation support activities (described in WSRC-RP-97-109) were completed and the results provide key documentation about system performance

  11. Vadose Zone Monitoring System as a Tool for Groundwater Protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahan, O.

    2007-05-01

    Subsurface monitoring for groundwater protection from pollution hazards has traditionally been based on culling information from the groundwater. This information is usually retrieved from boreholes penetrating the saturated section of the groundwater. Accordingly, the entire path and fate of pollutants transported from land surface through the vadose zone to the groundwater is evaluated from the chemical and physical state of the water which has been sampled from a well. That monitoring procedure is well founded in both scientific studies and through legislative acts which enforce groundwater monitoring for potential sources of pollution. However, this creates a paradox since, by definition, identification of pollution in groundwater means that the groundwater is already polluted. Moreover, since vertical transport in the vadose zone and lateral flow in the groundwater are very slow processes, pollution identification in a well may take years or decades. As a result, the total mass of pollutant that has penetrated the subsurface may be extremely high by the time it has been identified. Finally, pollution identification in a well usually reveals only the edges of a much larger pollutant plume. Accordingly, identification of pollution in the vadose zone right under the pollution source, long before it shows up in the groundwater, should be the key to groundwater protection. The need for real-time information on the quality of percolating water led to the development of a new vadose- zone monitoring system. The new monitoring system is designed to provide continuous measurements of the soil water content and water potential, while allowing pore-water sampling all along the vadose-zone cross section. The installation technique allows monitoring of the vadose-zone cross section under relatively undisturbed soil conditions. The new monitoring system is comprised of special flexible TDR (FTDR) probes, assembled with special vadose-zone sampling ports (VSPs) that function

  12. Challenges for Deep Vadose Zone Remediation at the Hanford Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The 'deep vadose zone' is defined as the region below the practical depth of surface remedy influence (e.g., excavation or barrier). At the Hanford Site, this region of the Central Plateau poses unique challenges for characterization and remediation. Currently, deep vadose zone characterization efforts and remedy selection are spread over multiple waste site Operable Units and tank farm Waste Management Areas. A particular challenge for this effort is the situation in which past leaks from single-shell tanks have become commingled with discharges from nearby liquid disposal sites. In addition, tests of potentially viable remediation technologies will be initiated in the next few years. The Hanford Site is working with all affected parties, including the Washington State Department of Ecology, the Environmental Protection Agency, DOE-RL, DOE-ORP, and multiple contractor organizations to develop remediation approaches. This effort addresses the complex and challenging technical and is evaluating the best strategy or combination of strategies for focusing technical investigations, including treatability studies to facilitate deep vadose zone remediation at the Hanford Site. In summary: Hanford's two DOE offices, Richland Operations and the Office of River Protection, are engaging the Site's regulators, EPA and the Washington State Department of Ecology, in a collaborative process to resolve one of Hanford's most challenging technical issues - investigation and remedy selection for the deep vadose zone. While this process has not reached its conclusion, several important findings are apparent. All parties agree that the current approach of addressing this problem is not likely to be successful and an alternative is needed. An essential initial step is to develop and then implement a deep vadose zone treatability test plan that logically organizes the testing of candidate technologies for application to the variety of Hanford's deep vadose zone problems. This plan is

  13. Advanced remedial methods for metals and radionuclides in vadose zone environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Functionally, the methods for addressing contamination must remove and/or reduce transport or toxicity of contaminants. This problem is particularly challenging in arid environments where the vadose zone can be up to hundreds of feet thick, rendering transitional excavation methods exceedingly costly and ineffective. Delivery of remedial amendments is one of the most challenging and critical aspects for all remedy-based approaches. The conventional approach for delivery is through injection of aqueous remedial solutions. However, heterogeneous vadose zone environments present hydrologic and geochemical challenges that limit the effectiveness. Because the flow of solution infiltration is dominantly controlled by gravity and suction, injected liquid preferentially percolates through highly permeable pathways, by-passing low-permeability zones which frequently contain the majority of the contamination. Moreover, the wetting front can readily mobilize and enhance contaminant transport to underlying aquifers prior to stabilization. Development of innovative, in-situ technologies may be the only way to meet remedial action objectives and long-term stewardship goals. Shear-thinning fluids (i.e., surfactants) can be used to lower the liquid surface tension and create stabile foams, which readily penetrate low permeability zones. Although surfactant foams have been utilized for subsurface mobilization efforts in the oil and gas industry, so far, the concept of using foams as a delivery mechanism for transporting reactive remedial amendments into deep vadose zone environments to stabilize metal and long-lived radionuclide contaminants has not been explored. Foam flow can be directed by pressure gradients, rather than being dominated by gravity; and, foam delivery mechanisms limit the volume of water (< 20% vol.) required for remedy delivery and emplacement, thus mitigating contaminant mobilization. We will present the results of a numerical modeling and integrated laboratory

  14. Advanced Remedial Methods for Metals and Radionuclides in Vadose Zone Environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Functionally, the methods for addressing contamination must remove and/or reduce transport or toxicity of contaminants. This problem is particularly challenging in arid environments where the vadose zone can be up to hundreds of feet thick, rendering transitional excavation methods exceedingly costly and ineffective. Delivery of remedial amendments is one of the most challenging and critical aspects for all remedy-based approaches. The conventional approach for delivery is through injection of aqueous remedial solutions. However, heterogeneous vadose zone environments present hydrologic and geochemical challenges that limit the effectiveness. Because the flow of solution infiltration is dominantly controlled by gravity and suction, injected liquid preferentially percolates through highly permeable pathways, by-passing low-permeability zones which frequently contain the majority of the contamination. Moreover, the wetting front can readily mobilize and enhance contaminant transport to underlying aquifers prior to stabilization. Development of innovative, in-situ technologies may be the only way to meet remedial action objectives and long-term stewardship goals. Shear-thinning fluids (i.e., surfactants) can be used to lower the liquid surface tension and create stabile foams, which readily penetrate low permeability zones. Although surfactant foams have been utilized for subsurface mobilization efforts in the oil and gas industry, so far, the concept of using foams as a delivery mechanism for transporting reactive remedial amendments into deep vadose zone environments to stabilize metal and long-lived radionuclide contaminants has not been explored. Foam flow can be directed by pressure gradients, rather than being dominated by gravity; and, foam delivery mechanisms limit the volume of water (< 20% vol.) required for remedy delivery and emplacement, thus mitigating contaminant mobilization. We will present the results of a numerical modeling and integrated laboratory

  15. Foam - novel delivery technology for remediation of vadose zone environments - 59019

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deep vadose zone environments can be a primary source and pathway for contaminant migration to groundwater. These environments present unique characterization and remediation challenges that necessitate scrutiny and research. The thickness, depth, and intricacies of the deep vadose zone, combined with a lack of understanding of the key subsurface processes (e.g., biogeochemical and hydrologic) affecting contaminant migration, make it difficult to create validated conceptual and predictive models of subsurface flow dynamics and contaminant behavior across multiple scales. These factors also make it difficult to design and deploy sustainable remedial approaches and monitor long-term contaminant behavior after remedial actions. Functionally, methods for addressing contamination must remove and/or reduce transport of contaminants. This problem is particularly challenging in the arid western United States where the vadose zone is hundreds of feet thick, rendering transitional excavation methods exceedingly costly and ineffective. Delivery of remedial amendments is one of the most challenging and critical aspects for all remedy-based approaches. The conventional approach for delivery is through injection of aqueous remedial solutions. However, heterogeneous deep vadose zone environments present hydrologic and geochemical challenges that limit the effectiveness. Because the flow of solution infiltration is dominantly controlled by gravity and suction, injected liquid preferentially percolates through highly permeable pathways, by-passing low-permeability zones that frequently contain the majority of contamination. Moreover, the wetting front can readily mobilize and enhance contaminant transport to the underlying aquifer prior to stabilization. Development of innovative in-situ technologies may be the only means to meet remedial action objectives and long-term stewardship goals. Surfactants can be used to lower the liquid surface tension and create stabile foams, which

  16. Installation and sampling of vadose zone monitoring devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A vadose zone monitoring system was installed in a sanitary landfill near the Y-12 facility on the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge, Tennessee Reservation. The work was completed as part of the LLWDDD program to develop, design, and demonstrate new low level radioactive waste disposal monitoring methods. The objective of the project was to evaluate the performance of three types of vadose zone samplers within a similar hydrogeologic environment for use as early detection monitoring devices. The three different types of samplers included the Soil Moisture Equipment Corporation Pressure-Vacuum samplers (Models 1920 and 1940), and the BAT Piezometer (Model MK II) manufactured by BAT Envitech, Inc. All three samplers are designed to remove soil moisture from the vadose (unsaturated) zone. Five clusters of three holes each were drilled to maximum depths of 45 ft around part of the periphery of the landfill. Three samplers, one of each type, were installed at each cluster location. Water samples were obtained from 13 of the 15 samplers and submitted to Martin Marietta for analysis. All three samplers performed satisfactorily when considering ease of installation, required in-hole development, and ability to collect water samples from the vadose zone. Advantages and disadvantages of each sampler type are discussed in the main report

  17. Effects of remediation amendments on vadose zone microorganisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, Hannah M.; Tilton, Fred A.

    2012-08-10

    Surfactant-based foam delivery technology has been studied to remediate Hanford 200 area deep vadose zone sediment. However, the surfactants and remediation amendments have an unknown effect on indigenous subsurface microorganisms. Microbial populations are important factors to consider in remediation efforts due to their potential to alter soil geochemistry. This project focuses on measuring microbial metabolic responses to remediation amendments in batch and column studies using Deep Vadose Zone Sediments. Initial studies of the microbes from Hanford 200 area deep vadose zone sediment showed surfactants sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and cocamidopropyl betaine (CAPB) and remediation amendment calcium polysulfide (CPS) had no affect on microbial growth using BiologTM Ecoplates. To move towards a more realistic field analog, soil columns were packed with Hanford 200 Area sediment. Once microbial growth in the column was verified by observing growth of the effluent solution on tryptic soy agar plates, remedial surfactants were injected into the columns, and the resulting metabolic diversity was measured. Results suggest surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) stimulates microbial growth. The soil columns were also visualized using X-ray microtomography to inspect soil packing and possibly probe for evidence of biofilms. Overall, BiologTM Ecoplates provide a rapid assay to predict effects of remediation amendments on Hanford 200 area deep vadose zone microorganisms.

  18. SEQUESTRATION AND TREATMENT OF VADOSE ZONE SOLVENTS USING EDIBLE OILS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edible oils have emerged as an effective treatment amendment for a variety of contaminants. When applied to chlorinated volatile organic compounds (cVOCs) in the saturated zone, edible oils have been shown to enhance anaerobic bioremediation and sequester the contaminants. However, edible oils have not been applied to the vadose zone for contaminant treatment. Soybean oil was injected into the vadose zone in M-Area at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Savannah River Site (SRS) as a research study to evaluate the effectiveness of edible oils for solvent sequestration and the ability to change a vadose system from aerobic to anaerobic to initiate reductive dechlorination. The proposed use of this technique would be an enhanced attenuation/transition step after active remediation. The goals of the research were to evaluate oil emplacement methods and monitoring techniques to measure oil placement, partitioning and degradation. Gas sampling was the cornerstone for this evaluation. Analyses for cVOCs and biotransformation products were performed. Overall, the cVOC concentration/flux reduction was 75-85% in this vadose zone setting. Destruction of the cVOCs by biotic or abiotic process has not yet been verified at this site. No reductive dechlorination products have been measured. The deployment has resulted in a substantial generation of light hydrocarbon gases and geochemical conditions that would support cometabolism

  19. Transport and degradation of contaminants in the vadose zone

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schotanus, D.

    2013-01-01

    Leaching of contaminants from the vadose zone to the groundwater depends on the soil properties and the infiltration rate. In this thesis, organic degradable contaminants were studied, such as de-icing chemicals (consisting of propylene glycol, PG) and pesticides. Heterogeneous soil properties lead

  20. Soil Flushing Through a Thick Vadose Zone: Perchlorate Removal Documented at Edwards AFB, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battey, T. F.; Shepard, A. J.; Tait, R. J.

    2007-12-01

    There are currently few viable alternatives for perchlorate remediation in the vadose zone, particularly for the relatively thick vadose zones that are typical in the arid southwest where many perchlorate sites occur. Perchlorate in the vadose zone occurs in the form of highly soluble salts that may represent a risk to human or ecological receptors, and may also represent a threat to the underlying groundwater. A soil flushing treatability study was conducted at Edwards Air Force Base in the Mojave Desert of southern California at a site with a 129-foot thick vadose zone consisting primarily of clayey sand. This study utilized an infiltration gallery in conjunction with extraction, treatment, and re-injection of groundwater at the site, which contained perchlorate-contaminated soil and groundwater. The study objective was to evaluate the effectiveness of the infiltration gallery to 1) introduce treated groundwater back into the aquifer and 2) wash the perchlorate from the vadose zone soils to the aquifer. The infiltration gallery consisted of slotted PVC pipes within a highly permeable engineered bed of washed gravel. The initial water introduced into the gallery was amended with potassium bromide tracer. A downhole neutron probe was used to track the movement of the wetting front downward and outward from the gallery. Successive neutron measurements in vertical access tubes revealed that the introduced water reached the 125-foot bottom of the access tubes 14 weeks after the water was introduced into the gallery. The bromide tracer was detected in groundwater immediately below the gallery approximately 1 week later. The infiltration gallery was able to sustain an average flow rate of 2.3 gallons per minute. Prior to infiltration, the perchlorate concentration in groundwater below the gallery was 4,500 µg/L. Approximately 18 weeks after the start of infiltration, a perchlorate spike of 72,400 µg/L was detected below the gallery. The increase in perchlorate

  1. Idaho National Laboratory Vadose Zone Research Park Geohydrological Monitoring Results

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kristine Baker

    2006-01-01

    Vadose zone lithology, hydrological characterization of interbed sediments, and hydrological data from subsurface monitoring of Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center wastewater infiltration are presented. Three-dimensional subsurface lithology of the vadose zone beneath the Vadose Zone Research Park is represented in a 2 dimensional (2 D) diagram showing interpolated lithology between monitoring wells. Laboratory-measured values for saturated hydraulic conductivity and porosity are given for three major interbeds, denoted as the B BC interbed (20 to 35 m bls), the C D interbed (40 to 45 m bls), and the DE 1 2 interbed (55 to 65 m bls), along with an overall physical description of the sediments and geologic depositional environments. Pre-operational pore water pressure conditions are presented to show the presence and location of perched water zones before pond discharge at the New Percolation Ponds. Subsurface infiltration conditions during initial high-volume discharge are presented to show water arrival times and arrival sequences. Steady-state conditions are then presented to show formation and locations of perched water zones and recharge sources after several months of discharge to the New Percolation Ponds.

  2. Trace Metals in Groundwater and Vadose Zone Calcite: In Situ Containment and Stabilization of Stronthium-90 and Other Divalent Metals and Radionuclides at Arid Western DOE Sites: Final Report for Award Number DE-FG07-02ER63486 to the University of Idaho (RW Smith) Environmental Management Science Program Project Number 87016

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, Robert W.; Fujita, Yoshiko

    2007-11-07

    Radionuclide and metal contaminants are present in the vadose zone and groundwater throughout the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) energy research and weapons complex. In situ containment and stabilization of these contaminants represents a cost-effective treatment strategy that minimizes workers’ exposure to hazardous substances, does not require removal or transport of contaminants, and generally does not generate a secondary waste stream. We have investigated an in situ bioremediation approach that immobilizes radionuclides or contaminant metals (e.g., strontium-90) by their microbially facilitated co-precipitation with calcium carbonate in groundwater and vadose zone systems. Calcite, a common mineral in many aquifers and vadose zones in the arid west, can incorporate divalent metals such as strontium, cadmium, lead, and cobalt into its crystal structure by the formation of a solid solution. Collaborative research undertaken by the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), University of Idaho, and University of Toronto as part of this Environmental Management Science Program project has focused on in situ microbially-catalyzed urea hydrolysis, which results in an increase in pH, carbonate alkalinity, ammonium, calcite precipitation, and co-precipitation of divalent cations. In calcite-saturated aquifers, microbially facilitated co-precipitation with calcium carbonate represents a potential long-term contaminant sequestration mechanism. Key results of the project include: **Demonstrating the linkage between urea hydrolysis and calcite precipitation in field and laboratory experiments **Observing strontium incorporation into calcite precipitate by urea hydrolyzers with higher distribution coefficient than in abiotic **Developing and applying molecular methods for characterizing microbial urease activity in groundwater including a quantitative PCR method for enumerating ureolytic bacteria **Applying the suite of developed molecular methods to assess the feasibility of the

  3. Trace Metals in Groundwater and Vadose Zone Calcite: In Situ Containment and Stabilization of Strontium-90 and Other Divalent Metals and Radionuclides at Arid Western DOE Sites: Final Report for Award Number DE-FG07-02ER63486 to the University of Idaho (RW Smith) Environmental Management Science Program Project Number 87016

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radionuclide and metal contaminants are present in the vadose zone and groundwater throughout the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) energy research and weapons complex. In situ containment and stabilization of these contaminants represents a cost-effective treatment strategy that minimizes workers exposure to hazardous substances, does not require removal or transport of contaminants, and generally does not generate a secondary waste stream. We have investigated an in situ bioremediation approach that immobilizes radionuclides or contaminant metals (e.g., strontium-90) by their microbially facilitated co-precipitation with calcium carbonate in groundwater and vadose zone systems. Calcite, a common mineral in many aquifers and vadose zones in the arid west, can incorporate divalent metals such as strontium, cadmium, lead, and cobalt into its crystal structure by the formation of a solid solution. Collaborative research undertaken by the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), University of Idaho, and University of Toronto as part of this Environmental Management Science Program project has focused on in situ microbially-catalyzed urea hydrolysis, which results in an increase in pH, carbonate alkalinity, ammonium, calcite precipitation, and co-precipitation of divalent cations. In calcite-saturated aquifers, microbially facilitated co-precipitation with calcium carbonate represents a potential long-term contaminant sequestration mechanism. Key results of the project include: **Demonstrating the linkage between urea hydrolysis and calcite precipitation in field and laboratory experiments **Observing strontium incorporation into calcite precipitate by urea hydrolyzers with higher distribution coefficient than in abiotic **Developing and applying molecular methods for characterizing microbial urease activity in groundwater including a quantitative PCR method for enumerating ureolytic bacteria **Applying the suite of developed molecular methods to assess the feasibility of the

  4. Vadose Zone Characterization System. Innovative Technology Summary Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Vadose Zone Characterization System (VZCS) uses a cone penetrometer (CP) with gamma sensors to characterize gamma contamination in the vadose zone under tank farms. A magnetometer in the CP tip reduces the probability of contacting subsurface utility or instrument lines during use. A truck-mounted VZCS can be driven into tank farms and located in any area the size of a parking space. A platform-mounted VZCS can be lifted by a crane into locations that have no vehicle access. Because of rapid deployment and lower cost, the VZCS can characterize an entire contamination plume for the same cost as a single borehole installation. Gamma contamination can be characterized to a depth of 150 ft in one day for a fraction of the cost of conventional drilling. This document contains information on the above mentioned technology, including description, applicability, cost, and performance data

  5. Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Management Plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This Project Management Plan (PMP) defines the authorities, roles, and responsibilities of the US Department of Energy (DOE), Richland Operations Office (RL) and those contractor organizations participating in the Hanford Site' s Groundwater/Vadose Zone (GW/VZ) Integration Project. The PMP also describes the planning and control systems, business processes, and other management tools needed to properly and consistently conduct the Integration Project scope of work

  6. Project Work Plan Chromium Vadose Zone Characterization and Geochemistry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ainsworth, Calvin C.

    2006-05-23

    The major objectives of the proposed study are to 1) determine the leaching characteristics of Cr(VI) from contaminated sediments collected from 100 area spill sites, 2) elucidate possible Cr(VI) mineral and/or chemical associations that may be responsible for Cr(VI) retention in the Hanford site 100 areas through the use of i) macroscopic solubility studies and ii) microscale characterization of contaminated sediments, and 3) from these data construct a conceptual model of Cr(VI) geochemistry in the Hanford 100 area vadose zone. These objectives are based on locating and obtaining contaminated sediment with depth and at varying Cr(VI) concentrations as we hypothesize that mineral/chemical-Cr(VI) associations should be related to the total Cr concentration and other master geochemical variables (e.g., pH, counter-cation type and concentration, and water content). In addressing these objectives, additional benefits accrued will be (1) a fuller understanding of Cr(VI) entrained in the vadose zone that will that can be utilized in modeling potential Cr(VI) source terms, and 2) accelerating the Columbia River 100 area corridor cleanup by developing remedial action based on a fundamental understanding of Cr(VI) vadose zone geochemistry.

  7. Effect of vadose zone on the steady-state leakage rates from landfill barrier systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leakage rates are evaluated for a landfill barrier system having a compacted clay liner (CCL) underlain by a vadose zone of variable thickness. A numerical unsaturated flow model SEEP/W is used to simulate the moisture flow regime and steady-state leakage rates for the cases of unsaturated zones with different soil types and thicknesses. The results of the simulations demonstrate that harmonic mean hydraulic conductivity of coarse textured vadose zones is 3-4 orders of magnitude less than saturated hydraulic conductivity; whereas, the difference is only one order of magnitude for fine textured vadose zones. For both coarse and fine textured vadose zones, the effective hydraulic conductivity of the barrier system and the leakage rate to an underlying aquifer increases with increasing thickness of the vadose zone and ultimately reaches an asymptotic value for a coarse textured vadose zone thickness of about 10 m and a fine textured vadose zone thickness of about 5 m. Therefore, the fine and coarse textured vadose zones thicker than about 5 m and 10 m, respectively, act as an effective part of the barrier systems examined. Although the thickness of vadose zone affects the effective hydraulic conductivity of the overall barrier system, the results demonstrated that the hydraulic conductivity of the CCL is the dominant factor controlling the steady-state leakage rates through barrier systems having single low permeability clay layers

  8. Effects of vadose zone on groundwater table fluctuations in unconfined aquifers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Jun; Xin, Pei; Hua, Guo-Fen; Luo, Zhao-Yang; Shen, Cheng-Ji; Chen, Dan; Li, Ling

    2015-09-01

    Above a shallow unconfined aquifer, a considerable amount of water is stored in the vadose zone. Through water exchange with the underlying unconfined aquifer, the vadose zone affects the groundwater table dynamics and overall behavior of the aquifer. In this paper, we examine tide-induced groundwater table fluctuations in unconfined aquifers influenced by vadose zone of finite thickness. Under the condition of small aquifer thickness (D) compared with the groundwater wavelength (L) (i.e., μ2 =(D / L) 2 ≪ 1) and small boundary oscillation amplitude (a) (i.e., ε = a / D ≪ 1) (where μ2 and ε are two parameters), an approximate analytical solution was derived to quantify systematically the vadose zone effects, with a particular consideration of capping by the ground surface, i.e., the upper boundary of the vadose zone. Depending on the extent to which the capillary rise is truncated by the ground surface, the vadose zone enhances the groundwater table fluctuations in an unconfined aquifer. However, the mean groundwater table height and exchange between surface water and groundwater are reduced due to the presence of the vadose zone. These effects are intensified with increased capillary rise, but weakened as the vadose zone thickens. This study provides a criterion for assessing the importance of vadose zone in modulating the response of unconfined aquifers to low-frequency forcing oscillations such as tides.

  9. TWRS vadose zone contamination issue expert panel status report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    When members were first canvassed for participation in the Vadose Zone Expert Panel the stated purpose for convening the Panel was to review a controversial draft report, the SX Tank Farm Report. This report was produced by a DOE Grand Junction Project Office (GJPO) contractor, RUST Geotech, now MACTEC-ERS, for the DOE Richland Office (DOERL). Three meetings were planned for June, July and August, 1995 to review the draft report and to complete a Panel report by mid-September. The Expert Panel has found its efforts confounded by various non-technical issues. The Expert Panel has chosen to address some of the non-technical issues in this Preface rather than to dilute the technical discussion that follows in the body of this independent expert panel status report (Panel Report). Rather than performing a straightforward manuscript review, the Panel was asked to resolve conflicting interpretations of gamma-ray logging measurements performed in vadose zone boreholes (drywells) surrounding the high-level radioactive wastes of the SX tank farm. There are numerous and complex technical issues that must be evaluated before the vertical and radial extent of contaminant migration at the SX tank farm can be accurately assessed. When the Panel first met in early June, 1996, it quickly became apparent that the scientific and technical issues were obscured by policy and institutional affairs which have polarized discussion among various segments of the Hanford organization. This situation reflects the kinds of institutional problems described separately in reports by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS/NRC), The Hanford Tanks Environmental Impacts and Policy Choices and BmTiers to Science: Technical Management of the Department of Energy Environmental Remediation Program. The Vadose Zone Characterization Program, appears to be caught between conflicting pressures and organizational mandates, some imposed from outside DOE-RL and some self

  10. Controlled field study for validation of vadose zone transport models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prediction of radionuclide migration through soil and groundwater requires models which have been tested under a variety of conditions. Unfortunately, many of the existing models have not been tested in the field, partly because such testing requires accurate and representative data. This report provides the design of a large scale field experiment representative, in terms of,surface area and depth of vadose zone, of an actual disposal area. Experiments are proposed which will yield documented data, of sufficient scale, to allow testing of a variety of models including effective media stochastic models and deterministic models. Details of the methodology and procedures to be used in the experiment are presented

  11. TWRS vadose zone contamination issue expert panel report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shafer, D.S.

    1997-05-01

    When members were first canvassed for participation in the Vadose Zone Expert Panel the stated purpose for convening the Panel was to review a controversial draft report, the SX Tank Farm Report. This report was produced by a DOE Grand Junction Project Office (GJPO) contractor, RUST Geotech, now MACTEC-ERS, for the DOE Richland Office (DOERL). Three meetings were planned for June, July and August, 1995 to review the draft report and to complete a Panel report by mid-September. The Expert Panel has found its efforts confounded by various non-technical issues. The Expert Panel has chosen to address some of the non-technical issues in this Preface rather than to dilute the technical discussion that follows in the body of this independent expert panel status report (Panel Report). Rather than performing a straightforward manuscript review, the Panel was asked to resolve conflicting interpretations of gamma-ray logging measurements performed in vadose zone boreholes (drywells) surrounding the high-level radioactive wastes of the SX tank farm. There are numerous and complex technical issues that must be evaluated before the vertical and radial extent of contaminant migration at the SX tank farm can be accurately assessed. When the Panel first met in early June, 1996, it quickly became apparent that the scientific and technical issues were obscured by policy and institutional affairs which have polarized discussion among various segments of the Hanford organization. This situation reflects the kinds of institutional problems described separately in reports by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS/NRC), The Hanford Tanks Environmental Impacts and Policy Choices and BmTiers to Science: Technical Management of the Department of Energy Environmental Remediation Program. The Vadose Zone Characterization Program, appears to be caught between conflicting pressures and organizational mandates, some imposed from outside DOE-RL and some self

  12. Calibrating vadose zone models with time-lapse gravity data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Lars; Binning, Philip John; Rosbjerg, Dan;

    2011-01-01

    The vadose zone plays an important role in the hydrologic cycle. Various geophysical methods can determine soil water content variations in time and space in volumes ranging from a few cubic centimeters to several cubic meters. In contrast to the established methods, time-lapse gravity measurements...... infer hydrologic information. In this study, changes in the soil water content gave rise to a measurable signal in a forced infiltration experiment on a 107-m2 grassland area. Time-lapse gravity data were able to constrain the van Genuchten soil hydraulic parameters in both a synthetic example and a...

  13. The case of arid and semi-arid zones; Le cas des zones arides et semi-arides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Agoumi, A. [Ecole Hassania, Casablanca (Morocco); Stour, L. [Hassan Univ., Mohammedia (Morocco). Faculty of Sciences

    2009-07-15

    This article addressed issues regarding the conservation and sustainable use of biomass resources in arid and semi-arid zone ecosystems. Conservation strategies for climatic zones threatened by increased pressure from intensified land use, drought, and land degradation were discussed along with sustainable land use management practices. The strategies range from strict regulations for environmental protection to various forms of conservation easements, such as carbon credits. The article also supported the initiative to reduce emissions caused by deforestation and degradation (REDD). The REDD initiative proposes that future global climate agreements should first aim to reduce the total forested area lost in the tropics and then to eventually cease global deforestation. It was concluded that sustainable forestry at a global level is needed in order to achieve mitigation targets and to avoid the risk that forests may becomes a net carbon source rather than carbon sinks. 3 figs.

  14. Tank waste remediation system vadose zone program plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The objective of the vadose zone characterization under this program is to develop a better conceptual geohydrologic model of identified tank farms which will be characterized so that threats to human health and the environment from past leaks and spills, intentional liquid discharges, potential future leaks during retrieval, and from residual contaminants that may remain in tank farms at closure can be explicitly addressed in decision processes. This model will include geologic, hydrologic, and hydrochemical parameters as defined by the requirements of each of the TWRS programs identified here. The intent of this TWRS Vadose Zone Program Plan is to provide justification and an implementation plan for the following activities: Develop a sufficient understanding of subsurface conditions and transport processes to support decisions on management, cleanup, and containment of past leaks, spills, and intentional liquid discharges; Develop a sufficient understanding of transport processes to support decisions on controlling potential retrieval leaks; Develop a sufficient understanding of transport processes to support decisions on tank farm closure, including allowable residual waste that may remain at closure; and Provide new information on geotechnical properties in the 200 Area to supplement data used for design and performance assessment for immobilized low-activity waste disposal facilities

  15. Tank waste remediation system vadose zone program plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fredenburg, E.A.

    1998-07-27

    The objective of the vadose zone characterization under this program is to develop a better conceptual geohydrologic model of identified tank farms which will be characterized so that threats to human health and the environment from past leaks and spills, intentional liquid discharges, potential future leaks during retrieval, and from residual contaminants that may remain in tank farms at closure can be explicitly addressed in decision processes. This model will include geologic, hydrologic, and hydrochemical parameters as defined by the requirements of each of the TWRS programs identified here. The intent of this TWRS Vadose Zone Program Plan is to provide justification and an implementation plan for the following activities: Develop a sufficient understanding of subsurface conditions and transport processes to support decisions on management, cleanup, and containment of past leaks, spills, and intentional liquid discharges; Develop a sufficient understanding of transport processes to support decisions on controlling potential retrieval leaks; Develop a sufficient understanding of transport processes to support decisions on tank farm closure, including allowable residual waste that may remain at closure; and Provide new information on geotechnical properties in the 200 Area to supplement data used for design and performance assessment for immobilized low-activity waste disposal facilities.

  16. Vadose Zone Characterization Techniques Developed by EMSP Research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guillen, Donna P.

    2003-02-24

    This paper discusses research contributions made by Environmental Management Science Program (EMSP) research in the area of geophysical characterization of the subsurface. The goal of these EMSP research projects is to develop combined high-resolution measurement and interpretation packages that provide accurate, timely information needed to characterize the vadose zone. Various types of geophysical imaging techniques can be used to characterize the shallow subsurface. Since individual geophysical characterization tools all have specific limitations, many different techniques are being explored to provide more widespread applicability over a range of hydrogeologic settings. A combination of laboratory, field, theoretical, and computational studies are necessary to develop our understanding of how contaminants move through the vadose zone. This entails field tests with field-hardened systems, packaging and calibration of instrumentation, data processing and analysis algorithms, forward and inverse modeling, and so forth. DOE sites are seeking to team with EMSP researchers to leverage the basic science research investment and apply these advances to address subsurface contamination issues that plague many U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) sites.

  17. Summary of Vadose -- Zone Conceptual Models for Flow and Contaminant Transport and 1999 - 2003 Progress on Resolving Deficiencies in Understanding the Vadose Zone at the INEEL

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert C. Starr; Dana L. Dettmers; Brennon R. Orr; Thomas R. Wood

    2003-12-01

    The thick vadose zone that underlies the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory has been recognized both as an avenue through which contaminants disposed at or near the ground surface can migrate to groundwater in the underlying Eastern Snake River Plain aquifer, and as a barrier to the movement of contaminants into the aquifer. Flow and contaminant transport in the vadose zone at the INEEL is complicated by the highly heterogeneous nature of the geologic framework and by the variations in the behavior of different contaminants in the subsurface. The state of knowledge concerning flow and contaminant transport in the vadose zone at and near the INEEL IN 1999 was summarized in Deficiencies in Vadose Zone Understanding at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (Wood et al., 2000). These authors identified deficiencies in knowledge of flow and contaminant transport processes in the vadose zone, and provided recommendations for additional work that should be conducted to address these deficiencies. In the period since (Wood et al., 2000) was prepared, research has been published that, to some degree, address these deficiencies. This document provides a bibliography of reports, journal articles, and conference proceedings published 1999 through mid-2003 that are relevant to the vadose zone at or near the INEEL and provides a brief description of each work. Publications that address specific deficiencies or recommendations are identified, and pertinent information from selected publications is presented.

  18. COLLOID-FACILITATED TRANSPORT OF RADIONUCLIDES THROUGH THE VADOSE ZONE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Contaminants have leaked into the vadose zone at the USDOE Hanford reservation. It is important to understand the fate and transport of these contaminants to design remediation strategies and long-term waste management plans at the Hanford reservation. Colloids may play an important role in fate and transport of strongly sorbing contaminants, such as Cs or Pu. This project seeks to improve the basic understanding of colloid and colloid-facilitated transport of contaminants in the vadose zone. The specific objectives addressed are: (1) Determine the structure, composition, and surface charge characteristics of colloidal particles formed under conditions similar to those occurring during leakage of waste typical of Hanford tank supernatants into soils and sediments surrounding the tanks. (2) Characterize the mutual interactions between colloids, contaminant, and soil matrix in batch experiments under various ionic strength and pH conditions. We will investigate the nature of the solid-liquid interactions and the kinetics of the reactions. (3) Evaluate mobility of colloids through soil under different degrees of water saturation and solution chemistry (ionic strength and pH). (4) Determine the potential of colloids to act as carriers to transport the contaminant through the vadose zone and verify the results through comparison with field samples collected under leaking tanks. (5) Improve conceptual characterization of colloid-contaminant-soil interactions and colloid-facilitated transport for implementation into reactive chemical transport models. This project was in part supported by an NSF-IGERT grant to Washington State University. The IGERT grant provided funding for graduate student research and education, and two graduate students were involved in the EMSP project. The IGERT program also supported undergraduate internships. The project is part of a larger EMSP program to study fate and transport of contaminants under leaking Hanford waste tanks. The project has

  19. EVALUATION OF VADOSE ZONE TREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES TO IMMOBILIZE TECHNETIUM-99

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    PETERSEN, S.W.

    2006-03-15

    The Hanford Site End State Vision document (DOE/RL-2003-59) states: ''There should be an aggressive plan to develop technology for remediation of the contamination that could get to the groundwater (particularly the technetium [{sup 99}Tc])''. In addition, there is strong support from the public and regulatory agencies for the above statement, with emphasis on investigation of treatment alternatives. In July 2004, PNNL completed a preliminary evaluation of remediation technologies with respect to their effectiveness and implementability for immobilization of {sup 99}Tc beneath the BC Cribs in the 200 West Area (Truex, 2004). As a result of this evaluation, PNNL recommended treatability testing of in situ soil desiccation, because it has the least uncertainty of those technologies evaluated in July 2004 (Treatability Test Outline, September 30, 2004). In 2005, DOE-RL and Fluor Hanford convened an independent technical panel to review alternative remediation technologies, including desiccation, at a three-day workshop in Richland, Washington. The panel was composed of experts in vadose-zone transport, infiltration control, hydrology, geochemistry, environmental engineering, and geology. Their backgrounds include employment in academia, government laboratories, industry, and consulting. Their review, presented in this document, is based upon written reports from Hanford, oral presentations from Hanford staff, and each panel members' years of experience in their particular field of expertise. The purpose of this report is to document the panel's evaluation of various treatment alternatives with potential for minimizing contaminant migration in the deep vadose zone at the Department of Energy Hanford Site. The panel was tasked with assessing the most viable and practical approach and making recommendations for testing. The evaluation of vadose-zone treatment alternatives was conducted to be broadly applicable at a variety of locations at

  20. Robust quantitative parameter estimation by advanced CMP measurements for vadose zone hydrological studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyama, C.; Wang, H.; Khuut, T.; Kawai, T.; Sato, M.

    2015-12-01

    Soil moisture plays a crucial role in the understanding of processes in the vadose zone hydrology. In the last two decades ground penetrating radar (GPR) has been widely discussed has nondestructive measurement technique for soil moisture data. Especially the common mid-point (CMP) technique, which has been used in both seismic and GPR surveys to investigate the vertical velocity profiles, has a very high potential for quantitaive obervsations from the root zone to the ground water aquifer. However, the use is still rather limited today and algorithms for robust quantitative paramter estimation are lacking. In this study we develop an advanced processing scheme for operational soil moisture reetrieval at various depth. Using improved signal processing, together with a semblance - non-normalized cross-correlation sum combined stacking approach and the Dix formula, the interval velocities for multiple soil layers are obtained from the RMS velocities allowing for more accurate estimation of the permittivity at the reflecting point. Where the presence of a water saturated layer, like a groundwater aquifer, can be easily identified by its RMS velocity due to the high contrast compared to the unsaturated zone. By using a new semi-automated measurement technique the acquisition time for a full CMP gather with 1 cm intervals along a 10 m profile can be reduced significantly to under 2 minutes. The method is tested and validated under laboratory conditions in a sand-pit as well as on agricultural fields and beach sand in the Sendai city area. Comparison between CMP estimates and TDR measurements yield a very good agreement with RMSE of 1.5 Vol.-%. The accuracy of depth estimation is validated with errors smaller than 2%. Finally, we demonstrate application of the method in a test site in semi-arid Mongolia, namely the Orkhon River catchment in Bulgan, using commercial 100 MHz and 500 MHz RAMAC GPR antennas. The results demonstrate the suitability of the proposed method for

  1. Colloid-Facilitated Transport of Radionuclides Through The Vadose Zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The main purpose of this project was to advance the basic scientific understanding of colloid and colloid-facilitated Cs transport of radionuclides in the vadose zone. We focused our research on the hydrological and geochemical conditions beneath the leaking waste tanks at the USDOE Hanford reservation. Specific objectives were (1) to determine the lability and thermodynamic stability of colloidal materials, which form after reacting Hanford sediments with simulated Hanford Tank Waste, (2) to characterize the interactions between colloidal particles and contaminants, i.e., Cs and Eu, (3) to determine the potential of Hanford sediments for in situ mobilization of colloids, (4) to evaluate colloid-facilitated radionuclide transport through sediments under unsaturated flow, (5) to implement colloid-facilitated contaminant transport mechanisms into a transport model, and (6) to improve conceptual characterization of colloid-contaminant-soil interactions and colloid-facilitated transport for clean-up procedures and long-term risk assessment

  2. An alternative tensiometer design for deep vadose zone monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradi, A. B.; Kandelous, M. M.; Hopmans, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    The conventional tensiometer is among the most accurate devices for soil water matric potential measurements, as well as for estimations of soil water flux from soil water potential gradients. Uncertainties associated with conventional tensiometers such as caused by ambient temperature effects and the draining of the tensiometer tube, as well as their limitation for deep soil monitoring has prevented their widespread use for vadose zone monitoring, despite their superior accuracy, in general. We introduce an alternative tensiometer design that offers the accuracy of the conventional tensiometer, while minimizing afore-mentioned uncertainties and limitations. The proposed alternative tensiometer largely eliminates temperature-induced diurnal fluctuations and uncertainties associated with the draining of the tensiometer tube, and removes the limitation in installation depth. In addition, the manufacturing costs of this alternative tensiometer design is close to that of the conventional tensiometer, while it is especially suited for monitoring of soil water potential gradients as required for soil water flux measurements.

  3. Vadose Zone Modeling Workshop proceedings, March 29--30, 1993

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    At the Hanford Site, the record of decision for remediation of CERCLA sites is largely based on results of the baseline risk and performance assessment of the remedial action alternatives. These assessments require the ability to predict the fate and transport of contaminants along appropriate exposure pathways which, in case of the Hanford Site, includes the migration of contaminants through the vadose zone to the water table. Listed below are some of the requirements, as prescribed by the regulators, relative to CERCLA risk and performance assessment at Hanford. A workshop was organized by the Environmental Risk and Performance Assessment Group, Westinghouse Hanford Company on March 29--30, 1993 at the Richland Best Western Tower Inn. During the workshop, an assessment was made of the need for and scope of various tasks being conducted or planned as part of the Hanford Site waste isolation performance assessment/risk assessment activities. Three external, nationally-recognized experts served as part of a review panel for the workshop: (a) Professor Lynn Gelhar of MIT; (b) Professor Peter Wierenga of University of Arizona; and (c) Dr. Rien van Genuchten of US Salinity Laboratory, Riverside, California. The technical experts provided their perspectives on the current state-of-the-art in vadose zone flow and transport modeling. In addition, the technical experts provided an outside independent assessment of the work being performed or planned in support of various activities identified in TPA Milestone M-29-02. This document includes the following: Recommendations from the three peer reviewers; areas of expertise of the three peer reviewers; workshop agenda; copies of viewgraphs (where available) from presenters at the workshop; workshop minutes; and list of workshop attendees

  4. Vadose Zone Modeling Workshop proceedings, March 29--30, 1993

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khaleel, R.

    1993-08-01

    At the Hanford Site, the record of decision for remediation of CERCLA sites is largely based on results of the baseline risk and performance assessment of the remedial action alternatives. These assessments require the ability to predict the fate and transport of contaminants along appropriate exposure pathways which, in case of the Hanford Site, includes the migration of contaminants through the vadose zone to the water table. Listed below are some of the requirements, as prescribed by the regulators, relative to CERCLA risk and performance assessment at Hanford. A workshop was organized by the Environmental Risk and Performance Assessment Group, Westinghouse Hanford Company on March 29--30, 1993 at the Richland Best Western Tower Inn. During the workshop, an assessment was made of the need for and scope of various tasks being conducted or planned as part of the Hanford Site waste isolation performance assessment/risk assessment activities. Three external, nationally-recognized experts served as part of a review panel for the workshop: (a) Professor Lynn Gelhar of MIT; (b) Professor Peter Wierenga of University of Arizona; and (c) Dr. Rien van Genuchten of US Salinity Laboratory, Riverside, California. The technical experts provided their perspectives on the current state-of-the-art in vadose zone flow and transport modeling. In addition, the technical experts provided an outside independent assessment of the work being performed or planned in support of various activities identified in TPA Milestone M-29-02. This document includes the following: Recommendations from the three peer reviewers; areas of expertise of the three peer reviewers; workshop agenda; copies of viewgraphs (where available) from presenters at the workshop; workshop minutes; and list of workshop attendees.

  5. Characterization of Direct Push Vadose Zone Sediments from the T and TY Waste Management Areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report contains all the geochemical and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from 5 direct push characterization holes emplaced to investigate vadose zone contamination associated with leaks from tanks 241-TY-105 (UPR-200-W-152) and 241-TY-106 (UPR-200-W-153). Tank 241-TY-105 is estimated to have leaked 35,000 gal of tributyl phosphate (TBP) waste from the uranium recovery process to the vadose zone in 1960. Tank 241-TY-106 is estimated to have leaked 20,000 gal of TBP-uranium recovery waste to the vadose zone in 1959. Although several drywells in the vicinity of tank 241-TY-106 contain measurable quantities of cesium-137 and/or cobalt-60, their relatively low concentrations indicate that the contaminant inventory in the vadose zone around tank 241-TY-106 is quite small. Additionally, this report contains all the geochemical and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from 7 direct push characterization holes emplaced to investigate vadose zone contamination associated with an overfill event and leak from tank 241-T-101.

  6. Technical and Policy Challenges in Deep Vadose Zone Remediation of Metals and Radionuclides - 12025

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deep vadose zone contamination is a significant issue facing the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Environmental Management (EM). Contamination in the deep vadose zone is isolated from exposure such that direct contact is not a factor in risk to human health and the environment. Transport of deep vadose zone contamination and discharge to the groundwater creates the potential for exposure and risk to receptors, so limiting flux to groundwater is key for protection of groundwater resources. Remediation approaches for the deep vadose zone need to be considered within the regulatory context, targeted at mitigating the source of contamination and reducing contaminant flux to groundwater. Processes for deep vadose zone metal and radionuclide remediation are discussed, as well as challenges and opportunities for implementation. It may be useful to consider the risk and challenges with leaving contaminants in place as part of a flux-control remedy in comparison with risks associated with contaminant removal and final disposition elsewhere. Understanding and quantifying the ramifications of contaminant removal and disposition options are therefore warranted. While this review suggests that some additional development work is needed for deep vadose zone remediation techniques, the benefits of applying vadose zone remediation for groundwater protection are compelling and worthy of continued development. (authors)

  7. Bioremediation Potential of Perchlorate Contaminated Deep Vadose Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gal, H.; Ronen, Z.; Weisbrod, N.; Dahan, O.; Nativ, R.

    2007-12-01

    Widespread perchlorate contamination was found in the vadose zone near a plant that manufactures ammonium perchlorate above the coastal aquifer of Israel in Ramat Hasharon. As part of the plant's operations, untreated industrial wastewater was disposed of for over 30 years in unlined wastewater ponds and nearby washes, causing contamination of the unsaturated zone (up to 2200 mg kg-1 sediment at a depth of 20 m) and the groundwater below it (up to 300 mg L-1). In this study, we examined the potential for microbial metabolism of perchlorate reduction in the contaminated deep vadose zone profile by native microbial communities. Microbial reduction of perchlorate was found in three of the four sediment samples taken from different depths. The sediments taken from 1 m (shallowest) and 35 m (deepest- close to the water table) showed the fastest degradation rates, while the sediment taken from 15 m showed the slowest rate. No perchlorate reduction was observed in the sediment taken from 20 m, where perchlorate concentrations were highest. These results were correlated to the viable microorganism counts in the profile. In experiments in which the effect of nitrate was examined, the lag time for perchlorate degradation was found to be inversely correlated to the initial nitrate concentration, while the perchlorate-reduction rates were faster in treatments with higher initial nitrate concentrations. We found no perchlorate degradation as long as nitrate was present in the system: perchlorate reduction was initiated only after all of the nitrate had been reduced. Nitrate-reduction rates were correlated to the initial nitrate concentrations and no lag period was observed. Nitrite was temporarily accumulated during nitrate reduction and was totally reduced, like nitrate, after 4 days. Count of viable microbial communities as well as PCR analysis of the chlorite dismutase gene in the native microbial population exposed to high concentrations of perchlorate (10,000-20,000 mg L-1

  8. Data Assimilation for Vadose Zone Flow Modeling Using the Ensemble Kalman Filter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Y.; Schaap, M. G.; Zha, Y.; Xue, L.

    2015-12-01

    The natural system is open and complex and the hydraulic parameters needed for describing flow and transport in the vadose zone are often poorly known, making it prone to multiple interpretations, mathematical descriptions and uncertainty. Quite often a reasonable "handle" on a sites flow characteristics can be gained only through direct observation of the flow processes itself, determination of the spatial- and probability distributions of material properties combined with computationally expensive inversions of the Richards equation. In groundwater systems, the ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) has proven to be an effective alternative to model inversions by assimilating observations directly into an ensemble of groundwater models from which time and/or space-variable variable probabilistic quantities of the flow process can be derived. Application of EnKF to Richards equation-type unsaturated flow problems, however, is more challenging than in groundwater systems because the relation of state and model parameters is strongly nonlinear. In addition, the type of functional dependence of moisture content and hydraulic conductivity on matric potential leads to high-dimensional (in the parameter space) problems even under conditions where closed-form expressions of these models such as van Genuchten-Mualem formulations are used. In this study, we updated soil water retention parameters and hydraulic conductivity together and used Restart EnKF, which rerun the nonlinear model from the initial time to obtain the updated state variables, in synthetic cases to explore the factors that may influence estimation results, including the initial estimate, the ensemble size, the observation error, and the assimilation interval. We embedded the EnKF into the Bayesian model averaging framework to enhance the model reliability and reduce predictive uncertainties. This approach is evaluated from a 15 m deep semi-arid highly heterogeneous and anisotropic vadose zone site at the

  9. In-situ bioaugmentation of vadose zone restoration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leakage from an underground gasoline storage tank caused evacuation from a restaurant and an insurance company. An engineering consultant was engaged to correct the problem. Upon remedy of the habitability situation, a groundwater recovery system was designed to recover whatever open-quotes free productclose quotes gasoline could be collected. Since traditional open-quotes Pump and treatclose quotes remedial technologies are successful only to the extent that the contaminant is mobile, an alternative is necessary to effectively remediate that contamination which is recalcitrant. At this point, Waste Stream Technology was enlisted to propose an in-situ remedial action plan. Approximately five injection wells were installed around the perimeter and in the zone of influence of each of eight recovery wells. The injection wells were designed to distribute the bacteria at various depths in the vadose zone. Bacteria were cultured on site in Waste Stream's proprietary bioreactor. Bacterial and nutrient applications were injected on a weekly basis. Bacterial population dynamics and BETX levels were monitored throughout the course of the remediation. Although the remediation is currently in progress, disappearance of open-quotes free productclose quotes on the water table and elimination of benzene in the groundwater over a reasonable time period marked the success of this project

  10. Remedy Evaluation Framework for Inorganic, Non-Volatile Contaminants in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Carroll, Kenneth C.

    2013-05-01

    Contaminants in the vadose zone may act as a potential long-term source of groundwater contamination and need to be considered in remedy evaluations. In many cases, remediation decisions for the vadose zone will need to be made all or in part based on projected impacts to groundwater. Because there are significant natural attenuation processes inherent in vadose zone contaminant transport, remediation in the vadose zone to protect groundwater is functionally a combination of natural attenuation and use of other remediation techniques, as needed, to mitigate contaminant flux to groundwater. Attenuation processes include both hydrobiogeochemical processes that serve to retain contaminants within porous media and physical processes that mitigate the rate of water flux. In particular, the physical processes controlling fluid flow in the vadose zone are quite different and generally have a more significant attenuation impact on contaminant transport relative to those within the groundwater system. A remedy evaluation framework is presented herein that uses an adaptation of the established EPA Monitored Natural Attenuation (MNA) evaluation approach and a conceptual model based approach focused on identifying and quantifying features and processes that control contaminant flux through the vadose zone. A key concept for this framework is to recognize that MNA will comprise some portion of all remedies in the vadose zone. Thus, structuring evaluation of vadose zone waste sites to use an MNA-based approach provides information necessary to either select MNA as the remedy, if appropriate, or to quantify how much additional attenuation would need to be induced by a remedial action (e.g., technologies considered in a feasibility study) to augment the natural attenuation processes and meet groundwater protection goals.

  11. Colloid Facilitated Transport of Radioactive Cations in the Vadose Zone: Field Experiments Oak Ridge

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James E. Saiers

    2012-09-20

    The overarching goal of this study was to improve understanding of colloid-facilitated transport of radioactive cations through unsaturated soils and sediments. We conducted a suite of laboratory experiments and field experiments on the vadose-zone transport of colloids, organic matter, and associated contaminants of interest to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The laboratory and field experiments, together with transport modeling, were designed to accomplish the following detailed objectives: 1. Evaluation of the relative importance of inorganic colloids and organic matter to the facilitation of radioactive cation transport in the vadose zone; 2. Assessment of the role of adsorption and desorption kinetics in the facilitated transport of radioactive cations in the vadose zone; 3. Examination of the effects of rainfall and infiltration dynamics and in the facilitated transport of radioactive cations through the vadose zone; 4. Exploration of the role of soil heterogeneity and preferential flow paths (e.g., macropores) on the facilitated transport of radioactive cations in the vadose zone; 5. Development of a mathematical model of facilitated transport of contaminants in the vadose zone that accurately incorporates pore-scale and column-scale processes with the practicality of predicting transport with readily available parameters.

  12. Evaluation of Soil Flushing for Application to the Deep Vadose Zone in the Hanford Central Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Oostrom, Martinus; Zhang, Z. F.; Carroll, Kenneth C.; Schramke, Janet A.; Wietsma, Thomas W.; Tartakovsky, Guzel D.; Gordon, Kathryn A.; Last, George V.

    2010-11-01

    Soil flushing was included in the Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test Plan for the Hanford Central Plateau as a technology with the potential to remove contaminants from the vadose zone. Soil flushing operates through the addition of water, and if necessary an appropriate mobilizing agent, to mobilize contaminants and flush them from the vadose zone and into the groundwater where they are subsequently captured by a pump-and-treat system. There are uncertainties associated with applying soil flushing technology to contaminants in the deep vadose zone at the Hanford Central Plateau. The modeling and laboratory efforts reported herein are intended to provide a quantitative assessment of factors that impact water infiltration and contaminant flushing through the vadose zone and into the underlying groundwater. Once in the groundwater, capture of the contaminants would be necessary, but this aspect of implementing soil flushing was not evaluated in this effort. Soil flushing was evaluated primarily with respect to applications for technetium and uranium contaminants in the deep vadose zone of the Hanford Central Plateau.

  13. Technical Basis for Evaluating Surface Barriers to Protect Groundwater from Deep Vadose Zone Contamination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fayer, Michael J.; Ward, Anderson L.; Freedman, Vicky L.

    2010-02-03

    This document presents a strategy for evaluating the effectiveness of surface barriers for site-specific deep vadose zone remediation. The strategy provides a technically defensible approach to determine the depth to which a surface barrier can effectively isolate contaminants in the vadose at a specific site as a function of subsurface properties, contaminant distribution, barrier design, and infiltration control performance. The strategy also provides an assessment of additional data and information needs with respect to surface barrier performance for deep vadose zone applications. The strategy addresses the linkage between surface barriers and deep vadose zone in situ remediation activities, monitoring issues, and emerging science, technology, and regulatory objectives. In short, the report documents the existing knowledge base, identifies knowledge needs (based on data gaps), and suggests tasks whose outcomes will address those knowledge needs. More important, the report serves as a starting point to engage the regulator and stakeholder community on the viability of deploying surface barriers for deep vadose zone contamination. As that engagement unfolds, a systematic methodology can be formalized and instituted. The strategy is focused on deep vadose zone contamination and the methods needed to determine the impact to groundwater from those deep vadose zone contaminants. Processes that affect surface barrier performance, recharge in the areas surrounding the surface barrier, and the near-surface vadose zone beneath the barrier are acknowledged but are not addressed by this strategy. In addition, the collection of site-specific data on contaminant distribution and geologic structure and properties are programmatic responsibilities and are not provided by this strategy.

  14. Spectroelectrochemical Sensor for Technetium Applicable to the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    William R. Heineman; Carl J. Seliskar; Samuel A. Bryan; Timothy L. Hubler

    2003-06-23

    The general aim of this project is to continue the design and implementation of a new sensor technology that offers the unprecedented levels of specificity needed for analysis of the complex chemical mixtures found at DOE sites nationwide. The new sensor concept combines the elements of electrochemistry, spectroscopy and selective partitioning into a single device that provides three levels of selectivity. The specific goal of this project is the development of a sensor for technetium (Tc) that is applicable to characterizing and monitoring the Vadose Zone and associated subsurface water at the Hanford site. The first goal is a sensor that determines technetium in the chemical form pertechnetate (TcO{sub 4}{sup -}). This report summarizes work during 6/16/01-6/15/02 of a three-year project that began on 9/15/99. During this period our efforts have focused on four areas that are discussed in the following sections. Electrochemistry of pertechnetate (TcO{sub 4}{sup -}) at bare ITO and film-coated ITO electrodes; Enhancing sensitivity by increasing analyte absorptivity; Development and characterization of selective films; and Improved field portable spectroelectrochemical sensor.

  15. Enhanced vadose zone nitrogen removal by poplar during dormancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ausland, Hayden; Ward, Adam; Licht, Louis; Just, Craig

    2015-01-01

    A pilot-scale, engineered poplar tree vadose zone system was utilized to determine effluent nitrate (NO3(-)) and ammonium concentrations resulting from intermittent dosing of a synthetic wastewater onto sandy soils at 4.5°C. The synthetic wastewater replicated that of an industrial food processor that irrigates onto sandy soils even during dormancy which can leave groundwater vulnerable to NO3(-) contamination. Data from a 21-day experiment was used to assess various Hydrus model parameterizations that simulated the impact of dormant roots. Bromide tracer data indicated that roots impacted the hydraulic properties of the packed sand by increasing effective dispersion, water content and residence time. The simulated effluent NO3(-) concentration on day 21 was 1.2 mg-N L(-1) in the rooted treatments compared to a measured value of 1.0 ± 0.72 mg-N L(-1). For the non-rooted treatment, the simulated NO3(-) concentration was 4.7 mg-N L(-1) compared to 5.1 ± 3.5 mg-N L(-1) measured on day 21. The model predicted a substantial "root benefit" toward protecting groundwater through increased denitrification in rooted treatments during a 21-day simulation with 8% of dosed nitrogen converted to N2 compared to 3.3% converted in the non-rooted test cells. Simulations at the 90-day timescale provided similar results, indicating increased denitrification in rooted treatments. PMID:26030360

  16. Vadose Zone Hydrogeology Data Package for Hanford Assessments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Last, George V.; Freeman, Eugene J.; Cantrell, Kirk J.; Fayer, Michael J.; Gee, Glendon W.; Nichols, William E.; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.

    2006-06-01

    This data package documents the technical basis for selecting physical and geochemical parameters and input values that will be used in vadose zone modeling for Hanford assessments. This work was originally conducted as part of the Characterization of Systems Task of the Groundwater Remediation Project managed by Fluor Hanford, Inc., Richland, Washington, and revised as part of the Characterization of Systems Project managed by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the U.S. Department of Energy, Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL). This data package describes the geologic framework, the physical, hydrologic, and contaminant transport properties of the geologic materials, and deep drainage (i.e., recharge) estimates, and builds on the general framework developed for the initial assessment conducted using the System Assessment Capability (SAC) (Bryce et al. 2002). The general approach for this work was to update and provide incremental improvements over the previous SAC data package completed in 2001. As with the previous SAC data package, much of the data and interpreted information were extracted from existing documents and databases. Every attempt was made to provide traceability to the original source(s) of the data or interpretations.

  17. Vadose Zone Hydrogeology Data Package for Hanford Assessments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This data package documents the technical basis for selecting physical and geochemical parameters and input values that will be used in vadose zone modeling for Hanford assessments. This work was originally conducted as part of the Characterization of Systems Task of the Groundwater Remediation Project managed by Fluor Hanford, Inc., Richland, Washington, and revised as part of the Characterization of Systems Project managed by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the U.S. Department of Energy, Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL). This data package describes the geologic framework, the physical, hydrologic, and contaminant transport properties of the geologic materials, and deep drainage (i.e., recharge) estimates, and builds on the general framework developed for the initial assessment conducted using the System Assessment Capability (SAC) (Bryce et al. 2002). The general approach for this work was to update and provide incremental improvements over the previous SAC data package completed in 2001. As with the previous SAC data package, much of the data and interpreted information were extracted from existing documents and databases. Every attempt was made to provide traceability to the original source(s) of the data or interpretations.

  18. Adaptive Fusion of Stochastic Information for Imaging Fractured Vadose Zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniels, J.; Yeh, J.; Illman, W.; Harri, S.; Kruger, A.; Parashar, M.

    2004-12-01

    A stochastic information fusion methodology is developed to assimilate electrical resistivity tomography, high-frequency ground penetrating radar, mid-range-frequency radar, pneumatic/gas tracer tomography, and hydraulic/tracer tomography to image fractures, characterize hydrogeophysical properties, and monitor natural processes in the vadose zone. The information technology research will develop: 1) mechanisms and algorithms for fusion of large data volumes ; 2) parallel adaptive computational engines supporting parallel adaptive algorithms and multi-physics/multi-model computations; 3) adaptive runtime mechanisms for proactive and reactive runtime adaptation and optimization of geophysical and hydrological models of the subsurface; and 4) technologies and infrastructure for remote (pervasive) and collaborative access to computational capabilities for monitoring subsurface processes through interactive visualization tools. The combination of the stochastic fusion approach and information technology can lead to a new level of capability for both hydrologists and geophysicists enabling them to "see" into the earth at greater depths and resolutions than is possible today. Furthermore, the new computing strategies will make high resolution and large-scale hydrological and geophysical modeling feasible for the private sector, scientists, and engineers who are unable to access supercomputers, i.e., an effective paradigm for technology transfer.

  19. Foam-Delivery of Remedial Amendments for Enhanced Vadose Zone Metals and Radionuclides Remediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The remediation of metals and radionuclides contamination, such as Cr(VI), Tc-99, and Sr-90 in the U.S. DOE Hanford Site vadose zone is a critical need. Water-based remedial amendments delivery to the deep vadose zone is facing significant technical challenges. Water-based delivery will easily leach out the highly mobile pollutants therefore contaminate the underlying aquifer. Preferential flow of the amendment-laden solution in the vadose zone due to the formation heterogeneity is difficult to overcome, resulting in bypassing of the less permeable zones. Foam has unique transport properties in the vadose zone that enable mitigation on the mobilization of mobile contaminants and enhance the sweeping over heterogeneous systems. Calcium polysulfide (CPS) is a remedial amendment that can be used to reduce and immobilize hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] and other redox-sensitive radionuclides/metals in the vadose zone. The delivery of CPS to the vadose zone using foam and the immobilization of Cr(VI) via reduction by the foam-delivered CPS was investigated in this study. Batch tests were conducted to select the foam-generating CPS-surfactant solutions, to determine the solution foamability and the reducing potential of CPS-containing foams, and to study the influence of foam quality, surfactant concentration, and CPS concentration on foam stability. Column experiments were performed to test the foam delivery of CPS to sediments under conditions similar to field vadose zone, to study the foam transport and interaction with sediments, and to determine the extent of Cr(VI) immobilization using this novel delivery approach. CPS-containing foams with high reducing potential were prepared based on the batch tests. Sediment reduction by foam-delivered CPS was observed in the column studies. Significant mobilization of Cr(VI) from sediments occurred when CPS was delivered in aqueous solution. The Cr(VI) mobilization was minimized when CPS was delivered by foams, resulting in

  20. A new general 1-D vadose zone flow solution method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogden, Fred L.; Lai, Wencong; Steinke, Robert C.; Zhu, Jianting; Talbot, Cary A.; Wilson, John L.

    2015-06-01

    We have developed an alternative to the one-dimensional partial differential equation (PDE) attributed to Richards (1931) that describes unsaturated porous media flow in homogeneous soil layers. Our solution is a set of three ordinary differential equations (ODEs) derived from unsaturated flux and mass conservation principles. We used a hodograph transformation, the Method of Lines, and a finite water-content discretization to produce ODEs that accurately simulate infiltration, falling slugs, and groundwater table dynamic effects on vadose zone fluxes. This formulation, which we refer to as "finite water-content", simulates sharp fronts and is guaranteed to conserve mass using a finite-volume solution. Our ODE solution method is explicitly integrable, does not require iterations and therefore has no convergence limits and is computationally efficient. The method accepts boundary fluxes including arbitrary precipitation, bare soil evaporation, and evapotranspiration. The method can simulate heterogeneous soils using layers. Results are presented in terms of fluxes and water content profiles. Comparing our method against analytical solutions, laboratory data, and the Hydrus-1D solver, we find that predictive performance of our finite water-content ODE method is comparable to or in some cases exceeds that of the solution of Richards' equation, with or without a shallow water table. The presented ODE method is transformative in that it offers accuracy comparable to the Richards (1931) PDE numerical solution, without the numerical complexity, in a form that is robust, continuous, and suitable for use in large watershed and land-atmosphere simulation models, including regional-scale models of coupled climate and hydrology.

  1. Short-term and long-term Vadose zone monitoring: Current technologies, development, and applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Faybishenko, Boris

    1999-05-01

    At Hanford, Savannah River, Oak Ridge, Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL), and other DOE sites, field vadose zone observations have shown complex water seepage and mass transport behavior in a highly heterogeneous, thick vadose zone on a variety of scales. Recent investigation showed that severe contamination of soils and groundwater by organic contaminant and nuclear waste occurred because of water seepage and contaminant transport along localized, preferential, fast flow within the heterogeneous vadose zone. However, most of the existing characterization and monitoring methods are not able to locate these localized and persistent preferential pathways associated with specific heterogeneous geologic features, such as clastic dikes, caliche layers, or fractures. In addition, changes in the chemical composition of moving and indigenous solutes, particularly sodium concentration, redox conditions, biological transformation of organic materials, and high temperature, may significantly alter water, chemicals, and bio-transformation exchange between the zones of fast flow and the rest of the media. In this paper, using the data from Hanford and INEEL sites, we will (1) present evidence that central problems of the vadose zone investigations are associated with preferential, fast flow phenomena and accelerated migration of organic and radioactive elements, (2) identify gaps in current characterization and monitoring technologies, and (3) recommend actions for the development of advanced vadose zone characterization and monitoring methods using a combination of hydrologic, geochemical, and geophysical techniques.

  2. Short-term and long-term Vadose zone monitoring: Current technologies, development, and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    At Hanford, Savannah River, Oak Ridge, Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL), and other DOE sites, field vadose zone observations have shown complex water seepage and mass transport behavior in a highly heterogeneous, thick vadose zone on a variety of scales. Recent investigation showed that severe contamination of soils and groundwater by organic contaminant and nuclear waste occurred because of water seepage and contaminant transport along localized, preferential, fast flow within the heterogeneous vadose zone. However, most of the existing characterization and monitoring methods are not able to locate these localized and persistent preferential pathways associated with specific heterogeneous geologic features, such as clastic dikes, caliche layers, or fractures. In addition, changes in the chemical composition of moving and indigenous solutes, particularly sodium concentration, redox conditions, biological transformation of organic materials, and high temperature, may significantly alter water, chemicals, and bio-transformation exchange between the zones of fast flow and the rest of the media. In this paper, using the data from Hanford and INEEL sites, we will (1) present evidence that central problems of the vadose zone investigations are associated with preferential, fast flow phenomena and accelerated migration of organic and radioactive elements, (2) identify gaps in current characterization and monitoring technologies, and (3) recommend actions for the development of advanced vadose zone characterization and monitoring methods using a combination of hydrologic, geochemical, and geophysical techniques

  3. CO2 production rate maxima in the deeper unsaturated zone of a semi-arid floodplain at Rifle, Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tokunaga, T. K.; Kim, Y.; Wan, J.; Dong, W.; Conrad, M. E.; Bill, M.; Hobson, C.; Williams, K. H.; Long, P. E.

    2015-12-01

    Fluxes of CO2 from soils are important to understand in order to predict subsurface feedbacks to the atmosphere and responses to climate change. Such fluxes are commonly monitored at the soil surface and generally assumed to largely originate within shallow depths. Relatively little is understood on the depth distribution of CO2 production below the rhizosphere. We monitored CO2 fluxes at the soil surface, and measured vertical profiles of vadose CO2 concentrations, matric potentials, and temperatures at the Rifle Site, a saline semi-arid floodplain along the Colorado River in order to determine the significance of deeper vadose zone respiration. Vadose zone CO2 profiles exhibit temperature-dependent seasonal variations, and are consistent with CO2 fluxes measured at the soil surface. The measured vadose zone CO2 concentration profiles combined with gas diffusion coefficients estimated from soil properties indicated that local maxima in rates of CO2 production persist in the deeper vadose zone, about 1 m below the rhizosphere, and above the water table (~3.5 m below the soil surface). We hypothesized that water and oxygen activities, nutrient levels, and temperatures remain favorable for microbial respiration throughout the year in the subrhizosphere, unlike overlying drier soils and the underlying poorly aerated aquifer. Using soils and sediments from the field site, the hypothesized existence of deeper subsurface maxima in CO2 production rate is currently being tested in the laboratory through sediment incubation experiments and in 2.0 m tall vadose zone columns. Initial results from the laboratory support the hypothesized persistence of a subrhizosphere "hot zone" for microbial respiration, partly sustained through seasonal pulses of dissolved and labile organic carbon originating from the rhizosphere. These findings suggest that similar sustained deeper local maxima in respiration rates may occur in many other regions where near-surface conditions are

  4. Quasi 3D modeling of water flow and solute transport in vadose zone and groundwater

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yakirevich, A.; Kuznetsov, M.; Weisbrod, N.; Pachepsky, Y. A.

    2013-12-01

    The complexity of subsurface flow systems calls for a variety of concepts leading to the multiplicity of simplified flow models. One commonly used simplification is based on the assumption that lateral flow and transport in unsaturated zone is insignificant unless the capillary fringe is involved. In such cases the flow and transport in the unsaturated zone above groundwater level can be simulated as a 1D phenomenon, whereas through groundwater they are viewed as 2D or 3D phenomena. A new approach for a numerical scheme for 3D variably saturated flow and transport is presented. A Quasi-3D approach allows representing flow in the 'vadose zone - aquifer' system by a series of 1D Richards' equations solved in variably-saturated zone and by 3D-saturated flow equation in groundwater (modified MODFLOW code). The 1D and 3D equations are coupled at the phreatic surface in a way that aquifer replenishment is calculated using the Richards' equation, and solving for the moving water table does not require definition of the specific yield parameter. The 3D advection-dispersion equation is solved in the entire domain by the MT3D code. Using implicit finite differences approximation to couple processes in the vadose zone and groundwater provides mass conservation and increase of computational efficiency. The above model was applied to simulate the impact of irrigation on groundwater salinity in the Alto Piura aquifer (Northern Peru). Studies on changing groundwater quality in arid and semi-arid lands show that irrigation return flow is one of the major factors contributing to aquifer salinization. Existing mathematical models do not account explicitly for the solute recycling during irrigation on a daily scale. Recycling occurs throughout the unsaturated and saturated zones, as function of the solute mass extracted from pumping wells. Salt concentration in irrigation water is calculated at each time step as a function of concentration of both surface water and groundwater

  5. A modeling study of water flow in the vadose zone beneath the Radioactive Waste Management Complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A modeling study was conducted for the purpose of gaining insight into the nature of water flow in the vadose zone beneath the Radioactive Waste Management Complex (RWMC). The modeling study focused on three specific hydrologic aspects: (1) relationship between meteorologic conditions and net infiltration, (2) water movement associated with past flooding events, and (3) estimation of water travel-times through the vadose zone. This information is necessary for understanding how contaminants may be transported through the vadose zone. Evaluations of net infiltration at the RWMC were performed by modeling the processes of precipitation, evaporation, infiltration and soil-moisture redistribution. Water flow simulations were performed for two distinct time periods, namely 1955--1964 and 1984--1990. The patterns of infiltration were calculated for both the undisturbed (or natural sediments) and the pit/trench cover materials. Detailed simulations of the 1969 flooding of Pit 10 were performed to estimate the rate and extent of water movement through the vadose zone. Water travel-times through the vadose zone were estimated using a Monte Carlo simulation approach. The simulations accounted for variability of soil and rock hydraulic properties as well as variations in the infiltration rate

  6. A National Roadmap for Vadose Zone Science and Technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kowall, Stephen Jacob

    2001-08-01

    This roadmap is a means of achieving, to the best of our current knowledge, a reasonable scientific understanding of how contaminants of all forms move in the vadose geological environments. This understanding is needed to reduce the present uncertainties in predicting contaminant movement, which in turn will reduce the uncertainties in remediation decisions.

  7. Vadose Zone Sampling Methods for Detection of Preferential Pesticides Transport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peranginangin, N.; Richards, B. K.; Steenhuis, T. S.

    2003-12-01

    Leaching of agricultural applied chemicals through the vadose zone is a major cause for the occurrence of agrichemicals in groundwater. Accurate soil water sampling methods are needed to ensure meaningful monitoring results, especially for soils that have significant preferential flow paths. The purpose of this study was to assess the capability and the effectiveness of various soil water sampling methods in detecting preferential transport of pesticides in a strongly-structured silty clay loam (Hudson series) soil. Soil water sampling devices tested were wick pan and gravity pan lysimeters, tile lines, porous ceramic cups, and pipe lysimeters; all installed at 45 to105 cm depth below the ground surface. A reasonable worse-case scenario was tested by applying a simulated rain storm soon after pesticides were sprayed at agronomic rates. Herbicides atrazine (6-chloro-N2-ethyl-N4-isopropyl-1,3,5-triazine-2,4-diamine) and 2,4-D (2,4-dichloro-phenoxyacetic acid) were chosen as model compounds. Chloride (KCl) tracer was used to determine spatial and temporal distribution of non-reactive solute and water as well as a basis for determining the retardation in pesticides movement. Results show that observed pesticide mobility was much greater than would be predicted by uniform flow. Under relatively high soil moisture conditions, gravity and wick pan lysimeters had comparably good collection efficiencies, whereas the wick samplers had an advantage over gravity driven sampler when the soil moisture content was below field capacity. Pipe lysimeters had breakthrough patterns that were similar to pan samplers. At small plot scale, tile line samplers tended to underestimate solute concentration because of water dilution around the samplers. The use of porous cup samplers performed poorly because of their sensitivity to local profile characteristics: only by chance can they intercept and sample the preferential flow paths that are critical to transport. Wick sampler had the least

  8. Relationship between precipitation and vadose-zone chemistry in a high-altitude watershed in Colorado

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Modeling reactions of water passing through the vadose zone prior to phreatic recharge requires knowledge of the prevailing chemical and physical conditions at the time of recharge. These conditions, therefore, directly affect subsequent reactions with waste placed in the vadose zone. Undisturbed areas provide a medium for development and testing of suitable reaction-model hypotheses. In the mountain watershed studied, precipitation components, which ordinarily are modeled as conservative, are dramatically affected by sublimation of winter snowpack. Concentration of components contributed by solution of minerals present in the vadose zone is affected by concentration of reactive components in precipitation, by hydrolysis of soil gas (primarily carbon dioxide), as well as by the relative reactivities of the solid mineral phases present. For snowmelt recharged mainly through fractured rock, soil gas hydrolysis contributes about 90 percent of the reactant; augite and plagioclase feldspar are the dominant reacting minerals. 12 references, 3 tables

  9. Solute travel time in the vadose zone under RWMC at INEL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Solute transport in the vadose zone under the Radioactive Waste Management Complex (RWMC) at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) is considered. The objective is to assess the relative importance of variables involved in modeling the travel time of a conservative solute from ground surface to water table. The vadose zone under RWMC is composed of several layers of basalt flows interceded with sediment layers. The thickness of the layers varies with location. The hydraulic properties also vary. The extents of the variations are large, with standard deviations exceed mean in some instances. The vadose zone is idealized as composed of horizontal layers. Solute transport starts at the ground surface and moves vertically downwards to the water table. The perceived process is one-dimensional. This study used VS2DT, a computer code developed by the US Geological Survey, for simulating solute transport in variably saturated porous media

  10. Gas-Phase Treatment of Technetium in the Vadose Zone at the Hanford Site Central Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Szecsody, James E.; Zhong, Lirong; Qafoku, Nikolla

    2014-09-01

    Technetium-99 (Tc-99) is present in the vadose zone of the Hanford Central Plateau and is a concern with respect to the protection of groundwater. The persistence, limited natural attenuation mechanisms, and geochemical behavior of Tc-99 in oxic vadose zone environments must be considered in developing effective alternatives for remediation. This report describes a new in situ geochemical manipulation technique for decreasing Tc-99 mobility using a combination of geochemical Tc-99 reduction with hydrogen sulfide gas and induced sediment mineral dissolution with ammonia vapor, which create conditions for deposition of stable precipitates that decrease the mobility of Tc-99. Laboratory experiments were conducted to examine changes in Tc-99 mobility in vadose zone sediment samples to evaluate the effectiveness of the treatment under a variety of operational and sediment conditions.

  11. Evaluation of Deep Vadose Zone Contaminant Flux into Groundwater: Approach and Case Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oostrom, Martinus; Truex, Michael J.; Last, George V.; Strickland, Christopher E.; Tartakovsky, Guzel D.

    2016-03-09

    For sites with a contaminant source located in the vadose zone, the nature and extent of groundwater contaminant plumes are a function of the contaminant flux from the vadose zone to groundwater. Especially for thick vadose zones, transport may be relatively slow making it difficult to directly measure contaminant flux. An integrated assessment approach, supported by site characterization and monitoring data, is presented to explain current vadose zone contaminant distributions and to estimate future contaminant flux to groundwater in support of remediation decisions. The U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site (WA, USA) SX Tank Farm was used as a case study because of a large existing contaminant inventory in its deep vadose zone, the presence of a limited-extent groundwater plume, and the relatively large amount of available data for the site. A predictive quantitative analysis was applied to refine a baseline conceptual model through the completion of a series of targeted simulations. The analysis revealed that site recharge is the most important flux-controlling process for future contaminant flux. Tank leak characteristics and subsurface heterogeneities appear to have a limited effect on long-term contaminant flux into groundwater. The occurrence of the current technetium-99 groundwater plume was explained by taking into account a considerable historical water-line leak adjacent to one of the tanks. The analysis further indicates that the vast majority of technetium-99 is expected to migrate into the groundwater during the next century. The approach provides a template for use in evaluating contaminant flux to groundwater using existing site data and has elements that are relevant to other disposal sites with a thick vadose zone.

  12. Evaluation of deep vadose zone contaminant flux into groundwater: Approach and case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oostrom, M.; Truex, M. J.; Last, G. V.; Strickland, C. E.; Tartakovsky, G. D.

    2016-06-01

    For sites with a contaminant source located in the vadose zone, the nature and extent of groundwater contaminant plumes are a function of the contaminant flux from the vadose zone to groundwater. Especially for thick vadose zones, transport may be relatively slow making it difficult to directly measure contaminant flux. An integrated assessment approach, supported by site characterization and monitoring data, is presented to explain current vadose zone contaminant distributions and to estimate future contaminant flux to groundwater in support of remediation decisions. The U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site (WA, USA) SX Tank Farm was used as a case study because of a large existing contaminant inventory in its deep vadose zone, the presence of a limited-extent groundwater plume, and the relatively large amount of available data for the site. A predictive quantitative analysis was applied to refine a baseline conceptual model through the completion of a series of targeted simulations. The analysis revealed that site recharge is the most important flux-controlling process for future contaminant flux. Tank leak characteristics and subsurface heterogeneities appear to have a limited effect on long-term contaminant flux into groundwater. The occurrence of the current technetium-99 groundwater plume was explained by taking into account a considerable historical water-line leak adjacent to one of the tanks. The analysis further indicates that the vast majority of technetium-99 is expected to migrate into the groundwater during the next century. The approach provides a template for use in evaluating contaminant flux to groundwater using existing site data and has elements that are relevant to other disposal sites with a thick vadose zone.

  13. Evaluation of deep vadose zone contaminant flux into groundwater: Approach and case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oostrom, M; Truex, M J; Last, G V; Strickland, C E; Tartakovsky, G D

    2016-06-01

    For sites with a contaminant source located in the vadose zone, the nature and extent of groundwater contaminant plumes are a function of the contaminant flux from the vadose zone to groundwater. Especially for thick vadose zones, transport may be relatively slow making it difficult to directly measure contaminant flux. An integrated assessment approach, supported by site characterization and monitoring data, is presented to explain current vadose zone contaminant distributions and to estimate future contaminant flux to groundwater in support of remediation decisions. The U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site (WA, USA) SX Tank Farm was used as a case study because of a large existing contaminant inventory in its deep vadose zone, the presence of a limited-extent groundwater plume, and the relatively large amount of available data for the site. A predictive quantitative analysis was applied to refine a baseline conceptual model through the completion of a series of targeted simulations. The analysis revealed that site recharge is the most important flux-controlling process for future contaminant flux. Tank leak characteristics and subsurface heterogeneities appear to have a limited effect on long-term contaminant flux into groundwater. The occurrence of the current technetium-99 groundwater plume was explained by taking into account a considerable historical water-line leak adjacent to one of the tanks. The analysis further indicates that the vast majority of technetium-99 is expected to migrate into the groundwater during the next century. The approach provides a template for use in evaluating contaminant flux to groundwater using existing site data and has elements that are relevant to other disposal sites with a thick vadose zone. PMID:27107320

  14. Tank 241-AX-104 upper vadose zone cone penetrometer demonstration sampling and analysis plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This sampling and analysis plan (SAP) is the primary document describing field and laboratory activities and requirements for the tank 241-AX-104 upper vadose zone cone penetrometer (CP) demonstration. It is written in accordance with Hanford Tank Initiative Tank 241-AX-104 Upper Vadose Zone Demonstration Data Quality Objective (Banning 1999). This technology demonstration, to be conducted at tank 241-AX-104, is being performed by the Hanford Tanks Initiative (HTI) Project as a part of Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) Retrieval Program (EM-30) and the Office of Science and Technology (EM-50) Tanks Focus Area. Sample results obtained as part of this demonstration will provide additional information for subsequent revisions to the Retrieval Performance Evaluation (RPE) report (Jacobs 1998). The RPE Report is the result of an evaluation of a single tank farm (AX Tank Farm) used as the basis for demonstrating a methodology for developing the data and analyses necessary to support making tank waste retrieval decisions within the context of tank farm closure requirements. The RPE includes a study of vadose zone contaminant transport mechanisms, including analysis of projected tank leak characteristics, hydrogeologic characteristics of tank farm soils, and the observed distribution of contaminants in the vadose zone in the tank farms. With limited characterization information available, large uncertainties exist as to the nature and extent of contaminants that may exist in the upper vadose zone in the AX Tank Farm. Traditionally, data has been collected from soils in the vadose zone through the installation of boreholes and wells. Soil samples are collected as the bore hole is advanced and samples are screened on site and/or sent to a laboratory for analysis. Some in-situ geophysical methods of contaminant analysis can be used to evaluate radionuclide levels in the soils adjacent to an existing borehole. However, geophysical methods require compensation for well

  15. TECHNICAL BASIS FOR EVALUATING SURFACE BARRIERS TO PROTECT GROUNDWATER FROM DEEP VADOSE ZONE CONTAMINATION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    FAYER JM; FREEDMAN VL; WARD AL; CHRONISTER GB

    2010-02-24

    The U.S. DOE and its predecessors released nearly 2 trillion liters (450 billion gallons) of contaminated liquid into the vadose zone at the Hanford Site. Some of the contaminants currently reside in the deeper parts of the vadose zone where they are much less accessible to characterization, monitoring, and typical remediation activities. The DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) prepared a treatability test plan in 2008 to examine remediation options for addressing contaminants in the deep vadose zone; one of the technologies identified was surface barriers (also known as engineered barriers, covers, and caps). In the typical configuration, the contaminants are located relatively close to the surface, generally within 15 m, and thus they are close to the base of the surface barrier. The proximity of the surface barrier under these conditions yielded few concerns about the effectiveness of the barrier at depth, particularly for cases in which the contaminants were in a lined facility. At Hanford, however, some unlined sites have contaminants located well below depths of 15 m. The issue raised about these sites is the degree of effectiveness of a surface barrier in isolating contaminants in the deep vadose zone. Previous studies by Hanford Site and PNNL researchers suggest that surface barriers have the potential to provide a significant degree of isolation of deep vadose zone contaminants. The studies show that the actual degree of isolation is site-specific and depends on many factors, including recharge rates, barrier size, depth of contaminants, geohydrologic properties ofthe sediments, and the geochemical interactions between the contaminants and the sediments. After the DOE-RL treatability test plan was published, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory was contracted to review the information available to support surface barrier evaluation for the deep vadose zone, identify gaps in the information and outcomes necessary to fill the data gaps, and outline

  16. Simulation of water seepage through a vadose zone in fractured rock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In order to improve our understanding of the vadose zone in fractured rock, obtaining useful tools to simulate, predict and prevent subsurface contamination, a three-dimensional model has been developed from the base of recent two-dimensional codes. Fracture systems are simulated by means of a dynamical evolution of a random-fuse network model, and the multiphase expression of Richards equation is used to describe fluid displacements. Physical situations presented here emphasized the importance of fracture connectivity and spatial variability on the seepage evolution through the vadose zone, and confirm the existence of dendritic patterns along localized preferential paths. (author)

  17. TECHNICAL BASIS FOR EVALUATING SURFACE BARRIERS TO PROTECT GROUNDWATER FROM DEEP VADOSE ZONE CONTAMINATION

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The U.S. DOE and its predecessors released nearly 2 trillion liters (450 billion gallons) of contaminated liquid into the vadose zone at the Hanford Site. Some of the contaminants currently reside in the deeper parts of the vadose zone where they are much less accessible to characterization, monitoring, and typical remediation activities. The DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) prepared a treatability test plan in 2008 to examine remediation options for addressing contaminants in the deep vadose zone; one of the technologies identified was surface barriers (also known as engineered barriers, covers, and caps). In the typical configuration, the contaminants are located relatively close to the surface, generally within 15 m, and thus they are close to the base of the surface barrier. The proximity of the surface barrier under these conditions yielded few concerns about the effectiveness of the barrier at depth, particularly for cases in which the contaminants were in a lined facility. At Hanford, however, some unlined sites have contaminants located well below depths of 15 m. The issue raised about these sites is the degree of effectiveness of a surface barrier in isolating contaminants in the deep vadose zone. Previous studies by Hanford Site and PNNL researchers suggest that surface barriers have the potential to provide a significant degree of isolation of deep vadose zone contaminants. The studies show that the actual degree of isolation is site-specific and depends on many factors, including recharge rates, barrier size, depth of contaminants, geohydrologic properties ofthe sediments, and the geochemical interactions between the contaminants and the sediments. After the DOE-RL treatability test plan was published, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory was contracted to review the information available to support surface barrier evaluation for the deep vadose zone, identify gaps in the information and outcomes necessary to fill the data gaps, and outline

  18. ANNUAL REPORT. INFLUENCE OF CLASTIC DIKES ON VERTICAL MIGRATION OF CONTAMINANTS IN THE VADOSE ZONE AT HANFORD

    Science.gov (United States)

    This research is testing the hypothesis that clastic dikes at the Hanford Site provide preferential pathways that enhance the vertical movement of moisture and contaminants through the vadose zone. Current flow and transport models of the vadose zone at the 200 Areas are based on...

  19. Evaluation of In Situ Grouting as a Potential Remediation Method for the Hanford Central Plateau Deep Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Pierce, Eric M.; Nimmons, Michael J.; Mattigod, Shas V.

    2011-01-11

    The Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test Plan for the Hanford Central Plateau report identifies in situ grouting as a potential remediation technology for the deep vadose zone and includes a planned effort to evaluate in situ grouting to provide information for future feasibility studies. This report represents the first step in this evaluation effort.

  20. Vadose zone transport field study: Detailed test plan for simulated leak tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology initiative was created in FY 1999 to reduce the uncertainty associated with vadose zone transport processes beneath waste sites at DOE's Hanford Site near Richland, Washington. This information is needed not only to evaluate the risks from transport, but also to support the adoption of measures for minimizing impacts to the groundwater and surrounding environment. The principal uncertainties in vadose zone transport are the current distribution of source contaminants and the natural heterogeneity of the soil in which the contaminants reside. Oversimplified conceptual models resulting from these uncertainties and limited use of hydrologic characterization and monitoring technologies have hampered the understanding contaminant migration through Hanford's vadose zone. Essential prerequisites for reducing vadose transport uncertainly include the development of accurate conceptual models and the development or adoption of monitoring techniques capable of delineating the current distributions of source contaminants and characterizing natural site heterogeneity. The Vadose Zone Transport Field Study (VZTFS) was conceived as part of the initiative to address the major uncertainties confronting vadose zone fate and transport predictions at the Hanford Site and to overcome the limitations of previous characterization attempts. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is managing the VZTFS for DOE. The VZTFS will conduct field investigations that will improve the understanding of field-scale transport and lead to the development or identification of efficient and cost-effective characterization methods. Ideally, these methods will capture the extent of contaminant plumes using existing infrastructure (i.e., more than 1,300 steel-cased boreholes). The objectives of the VZTFS are to conduct controlled transport experiments at well-instrumented field sites at Hanford to

  1. Vadose zone transport field study: Detailed test plan for simulated leak tests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    AL Ward; GW Gee

    2000-06-23

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology initiative was created in FY 1999 to reduce the uncertainty associated with vadose zone transport processes beneath waste sites at DOE's Hanford Site near Richland, Washington. This information is needed not only to evaluate the risks from transport, but also to support the adoption of measures for minimizing impacts to the groundwater and surrounding environment. The principal uncertainties in vadose zone transport are the current distribution of source contaminants and the natural heterogeneity of the soil in which the contaminants reside. Oversimplified conceptual models resulting from these uncertainties and limited use of hydrologic characterization and monitoring technologies have hampered the understanding contaminant migration through Hanford's vadose zone. Essential prerequisites for reducing vadose transport uncertainly include the development of accurate conceptual models and the development or adoption of monitoring techniques capable of delineating the current distributions of source contaminants and characterizing natural site heterogeneity. The Vadose Zone Transport Field Study (VZTFS) was conceived as part of the initiative to address the major uncertainties confronting vadose zone fate and transport predictions at the Hanford Site and to overcome the limitations of previous characterization attempts. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is managing the VZTFS for DOE. The VZTFS will conduct field investigations that will improve the understanding of field-scale transport and lead to the development or identification of efficient and cost-effective characterization methods. Ideally, these methods will capture the extent of contaminant plumes using existing infrastructure (i.e., more than 1,300 steel-cased boreholes). The objectives of the VZTFS are to conduct controlled transport experiments at well-instrumented field sites at

  2. Impact of switching crop type on water and solute fluxes in deep vadose zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkeltaub, T.; Kurtzman, D.; Russak, E. E.; Dahan, O.

    2015-12-01

    Switching crop type and consequently changing irrigation and fertilization regimes lead to alterations in deep percolation and solute concentrations of pore water. Herein, observations from the deep vadose zone and model simulations demonstrate the changes in water, chloride, and nitrate fluxes under a commercial greenhouse following the change from tomato to lettuce cropping. The site, located above a phreatic aquifer, was monitored for 5 years. A vadose-zone monitoring system was implemented under the greenhouse and provided continuous data on both temporal variations in water content and chemical composition of the pore water at multiple depths in the deep vadose zone (up to 20 m). Following crop switching, a significant reduction in chloride concentration and dramatic increase in nitrate were observed across the unsaturated zone. The changes in chemical composition of the vadose-zone pore water appeared as sequential breakthroughs across the unsaturated zone, initiating at land surface and propagating down toward the water table. Today, 3 years after switching the crops, penetration of the impact exceeds 10 m depth. Variations in the isotopic composition of nitrate (18O and 15N) in water samples obtained from the entire vadose zone clearly support a fast leaching process and mobilization of solutes across the unsaturated zone following the change in crop type. Water flow and chloride transport models were calibrated to observations acquired during an enhanced infiltration experiment. Forward simulation runs were performed with the calibrated models, constrained to tomato and lettuce cultivation regimes as surface boundary conditions. Predicted chloride and nitrate concentrations were in agreement with the observed concentrations. The simulated water drainage and nitrogen leaching implied that the observed changes are an outcome of recommended agricultural management practices.

  3. Electrical Resistivity Imaging for Studying Dynamics of Vadose Zone Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, V.; Pidlisecky, A.; Knight, R. J.

    2010-12-01

    deployed. Acquisition geometries designed to target different regions of the subsurface were used to acquire measurements every 1.5 hours. In 2008-2009 ~2000 data sets were acquired; each data set included measurements from probes and surface lines. In 2009-2010 ~1000 data sets were acquired. Data were processed using an extended Kalman filter (EKF) approach. The EKF was chosen for processing time-series ERI data because it models evolution of the physical system and the observation process, incorporating previous information into data-inversion at each time-step. In this application, the first for surface-based ERI field data, we modify the classical Kalman filter cost functional to incorporate spatial smoothing and impose an update constraint to account for slow state evolution with respect to the sampling interval. Results identified more hydrologic complexity than was originally assumed and indicated that processes in the top 0.5 m of the subsurface control infiltration rates. The results of ERI monitoring demonstrate that integrating geophysics into hydrologic studies can provide increased information about spatial and temporal evolution of vadose zone processes.

  4. Mitigating Vadose Zone Nitrogen Transport Under Land Use Change and Urbanization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parratt, R. T.; Menon, M.; Tyler, S.; Kropf, C.

    2008-12-01

    The discovery of large accumulations of nitrate within the vadose zones of many desert ecosystems coupled with land use change from urbanization in these areas may be having a detrimental effect on the ground water quality, often the source of public water supplies of these regions. Land use change can result in the initiation or increase in aquifer recharge (from over-irrigation, leaking pipes, wastewater discharge, etc.) and has the potential to mobilize the observed stores of accumulated nitrate in the vadose zone. This research focuses on mitigation options to reduce mobilization of nitrate in the vadose zone by stimulating denitrification reactions during transit through the vadose zone prior to reaching the underlying aquifers. Laboratory experiments using typical vadose zone materials from Spanish Springs, Nevada, conducted in 1 meter columns have been prepared with a nitrate rich soil layer (1000 ppm KNO3, labeled with 2% KNO3 - N15 isotopic tracer) designed to simulate a nitrate accumulation zone. All columns are irrigated with treated wastewater (effluent) at a rate of 0.5 cm/day to simulate excess irrigation of urbanized parklands. In addition to a control column, one column's irrigation is augmented with dextrose (C6H12O6) designed to provide sufficient carbon sources, when combined with higher water content, to promote microbial denitrification. A third column is treated with a compost and soil mixture at the surface of the soil to provide an alternative method of producing dissolved organic carbon to be advected with the infiltration to the nitrogen storage regions within the column. All columns are instrumented with volumetric water content probes, tensiometers, and soil solution samplers. Initial results from soil solution analysis indicate the possibility of nitrate reduction by as much as 50 % of the initial concentration, after only 14 days of residence time within the dextrose amended column. Analysis will be presented comparing the treatments

  5. ANNUAL REPORT. QUANTIFYING VADOSE ZONE FLOW AND TRANSPORT UNCERTAINTIES USING A UNIFIED, HIERARCHICAL APPROACH

    Science.gov (United States)

    The objective of this research is to develop and demonstrate a general approach for modeling flow and transport in the heterogeneous vadose zone. The approach uses similar media scaling, geostatistics, and conditional simulation methods to estimate soil hydraulic parameters at un...

  6. PROGRESS REPORT. QUANTIFYING VADOSE ZONE FLOW AND TRANSPORT UNCERTAINTIES USING A UNIFIED, HIERARCHICAL APPROACH

    Science.gov (United States)

    The objective of this research is to develop and demonstrate a general approach for modeling flow and transport in the heterogeneous vadose zone. The approach uses similar media scaling, geostatistics, and conditional simulation methods to estimate soil hydraulic parameters at un...

  7. ANNUAL REPORT. TECHNETIUM ATTENUATION IN THE VADOSE ZONE: ROLE OF MINERAL INTERACTIONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    High-level waste (HLW) has leaked into the vadose zone from buried single-shell tanks at the Hanford Site. Contaminant plumes containing radionuclides are slowly migrating toward the groundwater table. The accepted model of contaminant migration places technetium (Tc) at the lead...

  8. Inorganic carbon fluxes across the vadose zone of planted and unplanted soil mesocosms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thaysen, Eike Marie; Jacques, D.; Jessen, S.;

    2014-01-01

    The efflux of carbon dioxide (CO2) from soils influences atmospheric CO2 concentrations and thereby climate change. The partitioning of inorganic carbon (C) fluxes in the vadose zone between emission to the atmosphere and to the groundwater was investigated to reveal controlling underlying mechan...

  9. Engineering report single-shell tank farms interim measures to limit infiltration through the vadose zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    HAASS, C.C.

    1999-10-14

    Identifies, evaluates and recommends interim measures for reducing or eliminating water sources and preferential pathways within the vadose zone of the single-shell tank farms. Features studied: surface water infiltration and leaking water lines that provide recharge moisture, and wells that could provide pathways for contaminant migration. An extensive data base, maps, recommended mitigations, and rough order of magnitude costs are included.

  10. Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology Summary Description

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This volume of the Project Description for the Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project contains the Science and Technology roadmap. Roadmapping is a process in which problem holders come together with problem solvers to define problems and establish a path to solution

  11. Groundwater/vadose zone integration project science and technology summary description

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This volume of the Project Description for the Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project contains the Science and Technology roadmap. Roadmapping is a process in which problem holders come together with problem solvers to define problems and establish a path to solution

  12. Sampling and Hydrogeology of the Vadose Zone Beneath the 300 Area Process Ponds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Four open pits were dug with a backhoe into the vadose zone beneath the former 300 Area Process Ponds in April 2003. Samples were collected about every 2 feet for physical, chemical, and/or microbiological characterization. This reports presents a stratigraphic and geohydrologic summary of the four excavations

  13. Engineering report single-shell tank farms interim measures to limit infiltration through the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Identifies, evaluates and recommends interim measures for reducing or eliminating water sources and preferential pathways within the vadose zone of the single-shell tank farms. Features studied: surface water infiltration and leaking water lines that provide recharge moisture, and wells that could provide pathways for contaminant migration. An extensive data base, maps, recommended mitigations, and rough order of magnitude costs are included

  14. Performance Evaluation of Automated Passive Capillary Sampler for Estimating Water Drainage in the Vadose Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passive capillary samplers (PCAPs) are widely used to monitor, measure and sample drainage water under saturated and unsaturated soil conditions in the vadose zone. The objective of this study was to evaluate the performance and accuracy of automated passive capillary sampler for estimating drainage...

  15. Characterization of Direct Push Vadose Zone Sediments from the 241-U Single-Shell Tank Farm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Lanigan, David C.; Iovin, Cristian; Clayton, Ray E.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Clayton, Eric T.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Orr, Robert D.

    2007-12-20

    The overall goals of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., are 1) to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities, 2) to identify and evaluate the efficacy of interim measures, and 3) to aid, via collection of geochemical information and data, the future decisions that must be made by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) regarding the near-term operations, future waste retrieval, and final closure activities for the single-shell tank Waste Management Areas (WMAs). For a more complete discussion of the goals of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, see the overall work plan, Phase 1 RCRA Facility Investigation/Corrective Measures Study Work Plan for the Single-Shell Tank Waste Management Areas (DOE 1999). Specific details on the rationale for activities performed at WMA U are found in Crumpler (2003). To meet these goals, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to perform detailed analyses of vadose zone sediment collected within the U Single-Shell Tank Farm. Specifically, this report contains all the geochemical and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from ten direct push characterization holes emplaced to investigate vadose zone contamination associated with potential leaks within the 241-U Single-Shell Tank Farm. Specific tanks targeted during this characterization campaign included tanks 241-U-104/241-U-105, 241-U-110, and 241-U-112. Additionally, this report compiles data from direct push samples collected north of tank 241-U-201, as well as sediment collected from the background borehole (C3393). After evaluating all the characterization and analytical data, there is no question that the vadose zone in the vicinity of tanks 241-U-104 and 241-U-105 has been contaminated by tank-related waste. This observation is not new, as gamma logging of drywells in the area has identified uranium contamination at the

  16. Bioremediation of RDX in the vadose zone beneath the Pantex Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shull, T.L.; Speitel, G.E. Jr.; McKinney, D.C. [Univ. of Texas, Austin, TX (United States). Dept. of Civil Engineering

    1999-01-01

    The presence of dissolved high explosives (HE), in particular RDX and HMX, is well documented in the perched aquifer beneath the Pantex Plant, but the distribution of HE in the vadose zone has not yet been well defined. Although current remediation activities focus on the contamination in the perched aquifer, eventually regulatory concern is likely to turn to the residual contamination in the vadose zone. Sources of HE include the infiltration of past wastewater discharges from several HE-processing facilities through the ditch drainage system and leachate from former Landfill 3. With limited existing data on the HE distribution in the vadose zone and without preventive action, it must be assumed that residual HE could be leached into infiltrating water, providing a continuing supply of contamination to the perched aquifer. The purpose of this project was to more closely examine the fate and transport of HE in the vadose zone through mathematical modeling and laboratory experimentation. In particular, this report focuses on biodegradation as one possible fate of HE. Biodegradation of RDX in the vadose zone was studied because it is both present in highest concentration and is likely to be of the greatest regulatory concern. This study had several objectives: determine if indigenous soil organisms are capable of RDX biodegradation; determine the impact of electron acceptor availability and nutrient addition on RDX biodegradation; determine the extent of RDX mineralization (i.e., conversion to inorganic carbon) during biodegradation; and estimate the kinetics of RDX biodegradation to provide information for mathematical modeling of fate and transport.

  17. Vadose Zone Monitoring as a Key to Groundwater Protection from Pollution Hazard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahan, Ofer

    2016-04-01

    Minimization subsurface pollution is much dependent on the capability to provide real-time information on the chemical and hydrological properties of the percolating water. Today, most monitoring programs are based on observation wells that enable data acquisitions from the saturated part of the subsurface. Unfortunately, identification of pollutants in well water is clear evidence that the contaminants already crossed the entire vadose-zone and accumulated in the aquifer water to detectable concentration. Therefore, effective monitoring programs that aim at protecting groundwater from pollution hazard should include vadose zone monitoring technologies that are capable to provide real-time information on the chemical composition of the percolating water. Obviously, identification of pollution process in the vadose zone may provide an early warning on potential risk to groundwater quality, long before contaminates reach the water-table and accumulate in the aquifers. Since productive agriculture must inherently include down leaching of excess lower quality water, understanding the mechanisms controlling transport and degradation of pollutants in the unsaturated is crucial for water resources management. A vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS), which was specially developed to enable continuous measurements of the hydrological and chemical properties of percolating water, was used to assess the impact of various agricultural setups on groundwater quality, including: (a) intensive organic and conventional greenhouses, (b) citrus orchard and open field crops , and (c) dairy farms. In these applications frequent sampling of vadose zone water for chemical and isotopic analysis along with continuous measurement of water content was used to assess the link between agricultural setups and groundwater pollution potential. Transient data on variation in water content along with solute breakthrough at multiple depths were used to calibrate flow and transport models. These models

  18. Microbial Ecology of the Vadose Zone in the Vicinity of Residual Crude-Oil Contamination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekins, B. A.; Godsy, E. M.; Warren, E.; Hostettler, F. D.

    2001-05-01

    We characterized the microbial population in an 8-meter-thick, hydrocarbon-contaminated vadose zone using Most Probable Number (MPN) estimates for four physiologic types: aerobes, heterotrophic fermenters, iron-reducers and methanogens. The site is a surficial sand and gravel aquifer near Bemidji, MN, that was contaminated in 1979 when crude oil infiltrated the subsurface from a broken pipeline. Substantial liquid and vapor-phase petroleum hydrocarbons remain in the vadose zone. We examined three vadose-zone profiles located in: 1) the residual oil, 2) a vapor-contaminated area, and 3) the capillary fringe above the contaminated aquifer. In the residual oil ~100 methanogens per gram dry weight of sediment (g-1) are present throughout the profile, and fermenter numbers g-1 are 10,000 times those of iron-reducers, suggesting that methanogenesis is now the dominant degradation process. Analyses of extracted oil from these sediments show that substantial degradation of C15 -C35 n-alkanes has occurred since 1983. Moreover, gas concentration measurements indicate that methane production in this location has been active since at least 1986, raising the possibility that significant degradation of C15 and higher n-alkanes has occurred under methanogenic conditions. In the vapor-contaminated profile, aerobe numbers g-1 are 10,000 times higher than uncontaminated background values. Methanotrophic activity also was detected in laboratory incubations of these sediments. Apparently, a substantial microbial population has developed that is supported by the hydrocarbon vapors and methane. Downgradient from the oil, where groundwater is contaminated but no hydrocarbon vapors are detected, fermenter and aerobe numbers g-1 above the capillary fringe match those of uncontaminated sediments (100-1,000 g-1). Within the capillary fringe, numbers increase rapidly with depth to values typically found in the contaminated saturated zone. In the vadose zone profiles with significant

  19. Evaluating Contaminant Flux from the Vadose Zone to the Groundwater in the Hanford Central Plateau. SX Tank Farms Case Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Oostrom, Martinus [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Last, George V. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Strickland, Christopher E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Tartakovsky, Guzel D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-09-01

    At the DOE Hanford Site, contaminants were discharged to the subsurface through engineered waste sites in the Hanford Central Plateau. Additional waste was released through waste storage tank leaks. Much of the contaminant inventory is still present within the unsaturated vadose zone sediments. The nature and extent of future groundwater contaminant plumes and the growth or decline of current groundwater plumes beneath the Hanford Central Plateau are a function of the contaminant flux from the vadose zone to the groundwater. In general, contaminant transport is slow through the vadose zone and it is difficult to directly measure contaminant flux in the vadose zone. Predictive analysis, supported by site characterization and monitoring data, was applied using a structured, systems-based approach to estimate the future contaminant flux to groundwater in support of remediation decisions for the vadose zone and groundwater (Truex and Carroll 2013). The SX Tank Farm was used as a case study because of the existing contaminant inventory in the vadose zone, observations of elevated moisture content in portions of the vadose zone, presence of a limited-extent groundwater plume, and the relatively large amount and wide variety of data available for the site. Although the SX Tank Farm case study is most representative of conditions at tank farm sites, the study has elements that are also relevant to other types of disposal sites in the Hanford Central Plateau.

  20. An experimental study on isotope fractionation in a mesoporous silica-water system with implications for vadose-zone hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Ying; Horita, Juske

    2016-07-01

    Soil water dynamics within a thick vadose (unsaturated) zone is a key component in the hydrologic cycle in arid regions. In isotopic studies of soil water, the isotopic composition of adsorbed/pore-condensed water within soils has been assumed to be identical to that of bulk liquid water. To test this critical assumption, we have conducted laboratory experiments on equilibrium isotope fractionation between adsorbed/condensed water in mesoporous silica (average pore diameter 15 nm) and the vapor at relative pressures p/po = 0.3-1.0 along the adsorption-desorption isotherm at 30 °C. The isotope fractionation factors between condensed water in the silica pores and the vapor, α(2H) and α(18O), are smaller than those between liquid and vapor of bulk water (1.074 and 1.0088, respectively, at 30 °C). The α(2H) and α(18O) values progressively decrease from 1.064 and 1.0083 at p/po = 1 to 1.024 and 1.0044 at p/po = 0.27 for hydrogen and oxygen isotopes, respectively, establishing trends very similar to the isotherm curves. Empirical formulas relating α(2H) and α(18O) to the proportions of filled pores (f) are developed. Our experimental results challenge the long-held assumption that the equilibrium isotope fractionation factors for the soil water-vapor are identical to those of liquid water-vapor system with potential implications for arid-zone and global water cycles, including paleoclimate proxies in arid regions.

  1. Analysis of vadose zone tritium transport from an underground storage tank release using numerical modeling and geostatistics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Numerical and geostatistical analyses show that the artificial smoothing effect of kriging removes high permeability flow paths from hydrogeologic data sets, reducing simulated contaminant transport rates in heterogeneous vadose zone systems. therefore, kriging alone is not recommended for estimating the spatial distribution of soil hydraulic properties for contaminant transport analysis at vadose zone sites. Vadose zone transport if modeled more effectively by combining kriging with stochastic simulation to better represent the high degree of spatial variability usually found in the hydraulic properties of field soils. However, kriging is a viable technique for estimating the initial mass distribution of contaminants in the subsurface

  2. Research Plan: Foam Delivery of Remedial Amendments to Deep Vadose Zone for Metals and Radionuclides Remediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhong, Lirong; Hart, Andrea T.; Szecsody, James E.; Zhang, Z. F.; Freedman, Vicky L.; Ankeny, Mark; Hull, Laurence; Oostrom, Martinus; Freshley, Mark D.; Wellman, Dawn M.

    2009-01-16

    Research proposals were submitted to the Scientific and Technical Basis for In Situ Treatment of Metals and Radionuclides Technical Working Group under the US Department of Energy (DOE) Environmental Management Office (specifically, EM-22). After a peer review and selection process, the proposal, “Foam Delivery of Remedial Amendments to Deep Vadose Zone for Metals and Radionuclides Remediation,” submitted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) was selected for support by the program. A research plan was requested for this EM funded project. The overall objective of this project is to develop foam delivery technology for the distribution of remedial amendments to deep vadose zone sediments for in situ immobilization of metal and radionuclide contaminants. The focus of this research in FY 2009 is on the physical aspects of the foam delivery approach. Specific objectives are to 1) study the foam quality (i.e. the gas volume fraction in foam) influence on injection pressure, 2) study the sediment air permeability influence on injection pressure, 3) investigate liquid uptake in sediment and determine whether a water front will be formed during foam delivery, 4) test amendment distance (and mass) delivery by foam from the injection point, 5) study the enhanced sweeping over heterogeneous systems (i.e., low K zones) by foam delivery relative to water-based delivery under vadose zone conditions, and 6) numerically simulate foam delivery processes in the vadose zone. Laboratory scale experiments will be conducted at PNNL to study a range of basic physical aspects of the foam propagation in sediments, including foam quality and sediment permeability influence on injection pressure, liquid uptake, and foam sweeping across heterogeneous systems. This study will be augmented with separate studies to be conducted at MSE Technology Applications, Inc. (MSE) to evaluate foam transport and amendment delivery at the intermediate-scale. The results of intermediate

  3. Research Plan: Foam Delivery of Remedial Amendments to Deep Vadose Zone for Metals and Radionuclides Remediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Research proposals were submitted to the Scientific and Technical Basis for In Situ Treatment of Metals and Radionuclides Technical Working Group under the US Department of Energy (DOE) Environmental Management Office (specifically, EM-22). After a peer review and selection process, the proposal, 'Foam Delivery of Remedial Amendments to Deep Vadose Zone for Metals and Radionuclides Remediation,' submitted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) was selected for support by the program. A research plan was requested for this EM funded project. The overall objective of this project is to develop foam delivery technology for the distribution of remedial amendments to deep vadose zone sediments for in situ immobilization of metal and radionuclide contaminants. The focus of this research in FY 2009 is on the physical aspects of the foam delivery approach. Specific objectives are to (1) study the foam quality (i.e. the gas volume fraction in foam) influence on injection pressure, (2) study the sediment air permeability influence on injection pressure, (3) investigate liquid uptake in sediment and determine whether a water front will be formed during foam delivery, (4) test amendment distance (and mass) delivery by foam from the injection point, (5) study the enhanced sweeping over heterogeneous systems (i.e., low K zones) by foam delivery relative to water-based delivery under vadose zone conditions, and (6) numerically simulate foam delivery processes in the vadose zone. Laboratory scale experiments will be conducted at PNNL to study a range of basic physical aspects of the foam propagation in sediments, including foam quality and sediment permeability influence on injection pressure, liquid uptake, and foam sweeping across heterogeneous systems. This study will be augmented with separate studies to be conducted at MSE Technology Applications, Inc. (MSE) to evaluate foam transport and amendment delivery at the intermediate-scale. The results of intermediate

  4. Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative Fiscal Year 2011 Annual Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This annual report describes the background of the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative, and some of the programmatic approaches and transformational technologies in groundwater and deep vadose zone remediation developed during fiscal year 2011. The Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Technology Innovation and Development's (OTID) mission is to transform science into viable solutions for environmental cleanup. In 2010, OTID developed the Impact Plan, Science and Technology to Reduce the Life Cycle Cost of Closure to outline the benefits of research and development of the lifecycle cost of cleanup across the DOE complex. This plan outlines OTID's ability to reduce by $50 billion, the $200 billion life-cycle cost in waste processing, groundwater and soil, nuclear materials, and deactivation and decommissioning. The projected life-cycle costs and return on investment are based on actual savings realized from technology innovation, development, and insertion into remedial strategies and schedules at the Fernald, Mound, and Ashtabula sites. To achieve our goals, OTID developed Applied Field Research Initiatives to facilitate and accelerate collaborative development and implementation of new tools and approaches that reduce risk, cost and time for site closure. The primary mission of the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative (DVZ-AFRI) is to protect our nation's water resources, keeping them clean and safe for future generations. The DVZ-AFRI was established for the DOE to develop effective, science-based solutions for remediating, characterizing, monitoring, and predicting the behavior and fate of deep vadose zone contamination. Subsurface contaminants include radionuclides, metals, organics, and liquid waste that originated from various sources, including legacy waste from the nation's nuclear weapons complexes. The DVZ-AFRI project team is translating strategy into action by working to solve these complex challenges in a collaborative

  5. Time lag estimates for nitrate travel through the vadose zone in Southland, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Scott; Chanut, Pierre; Ledgard, George; Rissmann, Clint

    2014-05-01

    A regional-scale study was carried out to calculate the travel time of a nitrate particle from the ground surface into shallow groundwater. The aim of the study was to obtain preliminary answers to two questions. Firstly, if leaching limits are set, how long would it take to see an improvement in shallow groundwater quality? Secondly, have groundwater nitrate concentrations reached equilibrium from recent dairy expansion in the region, or could we expect future increases? We applied a methodology that provides a balance between the detail and generalisation that is required for a regional-scale study. Steady-state advective transport through the vadose zone was modelled with water retention curves. These curves enable an estimate of the average volumetric water content of the vadose zone. The percentage saturation can then be used to calculate the vadose zone transit time if effective porosity, depth to the water table and annual average soil drainage are known. A time for mixing in the uppermost part of the aquifer has also been calculated. Two different vadose zone water retention curve models were used for comparison, the Brooks-Corey (1964), and the Van Genuchten (1980) methods. The water retention curves were parameterised by sediment texture via the Rawls and Brakensiek (1985) pedotransfer functions. Hydraulic properties were derived by positioning sediment textural descriptions on the Folk textural triangle, estimates of effective porosity from literature, and hydraulic conductivity values from aquifer tests. Uncertainty of parameter estimates was included by assigning standard deviations and appropriate probability distributions. Vadose zone saturation was modelled at 6,450 sites across the region with a Monte Carlo simulation involving 10,000 realisations. This generated a probability distribution of saturation for each site. Average volumetric water content of the vadose zone ranged from 8.5 to 40.7 % for the Brooks-Corey model and 12.9 to 36.3% for the

  6. Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative Fiscal Year 2011 Annual Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Johnson, Timothy C.; Smith, Ronald M.; Truex, Michael J.; Matthews, Hope E.

    2011-10-01

    This annual report describes the background of the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative, and some of the programmatic approaches and transformational technologies in groundwater and deep vadose zone remediation developed during fiscal year 2011. The Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Technology Innovation and Development's (OTID) mission is to transform science into viable solutions for environmental cleanup. In 2010, OTID developed the Impact Plan, Science and Technology to Reduce the Life Cycle Cost of Closure to outline the benefits of research and development of the lifecycle cost of cleanup across the DOE complex. This plan outlines OTID's ability to reduce by $50 billion, the $200 billion life-cycle cost in waste processing, groundwater and soil, nuclear materials, and deactivation and decommissioning. The projected life-cycle costs and return on investment are based on actual savings realized from technology innovation, development, and insertion into remedial strategies and schedules at the Fernald, Mound, and Ashtabula sites. To achieve our goals, OTID developed Applied Field Research Initiatives to facilitate and accelerate collaborative development and implementation of new tools and approaches that reduce risk, cost and time for site closure. The primary mission of the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative (DVZ-AFRI) is to protect our nation's water resources, keeping them clean and safe for future generations. The DVZ-AFRI was established for the DOE to develop effective, science-based solutions for remediating, characterizing, monitoring, and predicting the behavior and fate of deep vadose zone contamination. Subsurface contaminants include radionuclides, metals, organics, and liquid waste that originated from various sources, including legacy waste from the nation's nuclear weapons complexes. The DVZ-AFRI project team is translating strategy into action by working to solve these complex challenges in a

  7. Macroscopic relationship for preferential flow in the vadose zone:Theory and validation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2009-01-01

    Preferential flow commonly observed in unsaturated soils allows rapid movement of solute from the ground surface or vadose zone to the groundwater, bypassing a significant volume of unsaturated soil and increasing the risk of groundwater contamination. A variety of evidence indicates that complex preferential flow patterns observed from fields are fractals. This paper discusses a macroscopic relationship for modeling preferential flow in the vadose zone. Conceptually, the flow domain can be divided into active and inactive regions. Flow occurs preferentially in the active region (characterized by fractals), and inactive region is simply bypassed. The portion of the active region was found to be a power function of saturation. The validity of this macroscopic relationship is demonstrated by its consistency with field observations and the related numerical experiments.

  8. Experimental and Numerical Investigations of Soil Desiccation for Vadose Zone Remediation: Report for Fiscal Year 2007

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ward, Andy L.; Oostrom, Mart; Bacon, Diana H.

    2008-02-04

    Apart from source excavation, the options available for the remediation of vadose zone metal and radionuclide contaminants beyond the practical excavation depth (0 to 15 m) are quite limited. Of the available technologies, very few are applicable to the deep vadose zone with the top-ranked candidate being soil desiccation. An expert panel review of the work on infiltration control and supplemental technologies identified a number of knowledge gaps that would need to be overcome before soil desiccation could be deployed. The report documents some of the research conducted in the last year to fill these knowledge gaps. This work included 1) performing intermediate-scale laboratory flow cell experiments to demonstrate the desiccation process, 2) implementing a scalable version of Subsurface Transport Over Multiple Phases–Water-Air-Energy (STOMP-WAE), and 3) performing numerical experiments to identify the factors controlling the performance of a desiccation system.

  9. A comprehensive analysis of contaminant transport in the vadose zone beneath tank SX-109

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ward, A.L.; Gee, G.W.; White, M.D.

    1997-02-01

    The Vadose Zone Characterization Project is currently investigating the subsurface distribution of gamma-emitting radionuclides in S and SX Waste Management Area (WMA-S-SX) located in the 200 West Area of the US Department of Energy`s Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State. Spectral-gamma logging of boreholes has detected elevated {sup 137}Cs concentrations as deep as 38 m, a depth considered excessive based on the assumed geochemistry of {sup 137}Cs in Hanford sediments. Routine groundwater sampling under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) have also detected elevated levels of site-specific contaminants downgradient of WMA-S-SX. The objective of this report is to explore the processes controlling the migration of {sup 137}Cs, {sup 99}Tc, and NO{sub 3} through the vadose zone of WMA-S-SX, particularly beneath tank SX-109.

  10. The Use of Radar Methods to Determine Moisture Content in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rosemary Knight

    2003-12-28

    Water content is a critical parameter affecting both liquid-phase and vapor-phase contaminant transport in the vadose zone. This means that accurate estimate of in situ water content must be obtained in order to design for the appropriate handling or remediation of a contaminated region of the vadose zone. Traditional methods of sampling the subsurface by drilling and/or direct sampling are very time consuming, limited in terms of spatial coverage, and have the associated risk of contacting and increasing the size of the contaminated area. One solution is to use geophysical methods which can provide a high-resolution, non-invasive means of sampling or imagin the subsurface.

  11. A comprehensive analysis of contaminant transport in the vadose zone beneath tank SX-109

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Vadose Zone Characterization Project is currently investigating the subsurface distribution of gamma-emitting radionuclides in S and SX Waste Management Area (WMA-S-SX) located in the 200 West Area of the US Department of Energy's Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State. Spectral-gamma logging of boreholes has detected elevated 137Cs concentrations as deep as 38 m, a depth considered excessive based on the assumed geochemistry of 137Cs in Hanford sediments. Routine groundwater sampling under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) have also detected elevated levels of site-specific contaminants downgradient of WMA-S-SX. The objective of this report is to explore the processes controlling the migration of 137Cs, 99Tc, and NO3 through the vadose zone of WMA-S-SX, particularly beneath tank SX-109

  12. Science Road Map for Phase 2 of the Tank-Farm Vadose Zone Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zachara, John M.; Freshley, Mark D.; Mann, Frederick M.

    2008-08-18

    Phase 1 of the Tank-Farm Vadose Zone Program (TFVZP) developed information on the nature and extent of vadose zone contamination in the tank farms through field studies, laboratory analyses and experiments, and historical data searches; assembled data and performed tank-farm risk analysis; and initiated interim corrective actions to lessen the impacts of tank leak contaminants. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory scientists and external collaborators at universities and U.S. Department of Energy user facilities sampled and analyzed contaminant plumes. These types of activities will continue during Phase 2 of the TFVZP to refine and expand scientific understanding of the subsurface beneath tank farms, especially of water movement, residual waste leaching, and contaminant transport.

  13. A macroscopic relationship for preferential flow in the vadose zone: Theory and Validation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, H.H.; Zhang, R.D.

    2010-02-15

    Preferential flow commonly observed in unsaturated soils allows rapid movement of solute from the ground surface or vadose zone to the groundwater, bypassing a significant volume of unsaturated soil and increasing the risk of groundwater contamination. A variety of evidence indicates that complex preferential flow patterns observed from fields are fractals. This paper discusses a macroscopic rela-tionship for modeling preferential flow in the vadose zone. Conceptually, the flow domain can be di-vided into active and inactive regions. Flow occurs preferentially in the active region (characterized by fractals), and inactive region is simply bypassed. The portion of the active region was found to be a power function of saturation. The validity of this macroscopic relationship is demonstrated by its consistency with field observations and the related numerical experiments.

  14. Potential of arid zone vegetation as a source of substrates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bassham, J.A.

    1977-11-01

    Three aspects of the potential of vegetation in arid zones as a source of substrates are discussed. The first includes the limitations on efficiency of conversion of solar energy to the stored chemical energy of biomass in green plants, and the subsequent biochemical pathways of carbon dioxide fixation and biosynthesis. Second is the potential of plants endogenous to arid zones. Finally, the use of covered agriculture or controlled environmental agriculture (CEA) is considered both in its present form and in terms of possible extenion to the large scale production of stable crops. (JGB)

  15. Remediation of Deep Vadose Zone Radionuclide and Metal Contamination: Status and Issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dresel, P. Evan; Truex, Michael J.; Cantrell, Keri

    2008-12-30

    This report documents the results of a PNNL literature review to report on the state of maturity of deep vadose zone remediation technologies for metal contaminants including some radionuclides. Its recommendations feed into decisionmakers need for scientific information and cost-effective in situ remediation technlogies needed under DOE's Environmental Management initiative Enhanced Remediation Methods: Scientific & Technical Basis for In Stu Treatment Systems for Metals and Radionuclides.

  16. Approach to the vadose zone monitoring in hazardous and solid waste disposal facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Twardowska, Irena

    2004-03-01

    In the solid waste (SW)disposal sites, in particular at the unlined facilities, at the remediated or newly-constructed units equipped with novel protective/reactive permeable barriers or at lined facilities with leachate collection systems that are prone to failure, the vadose zone monitoring should comprise besides the natural soil layer beneath the landfill, also the anthropogenic vadose zone, i.e. the waste layer and pore solutions in the landfill. The vadose zone screening along the vertical profile of SW facilities with use of direct invasive soil-core and soil-pore liquid techniques shows vertical downward redistribution of inorganic (macroconstituents and heavy metals) and organic (PAHs) contaminant loads in water infiltrating through the waste layer. These loads can make ground water down-gradient of the dump unfit for any use. To avoid damage of protective/reactive permeable barriers and liners, an installation of stationary monitoring systems along the waste layer profile during the construction of a landfill, which are amenable to generate accurate data and information in a near-real time should be considered including:(i) permanent samplers of pore solution, with a periodic pump-induced transport of collected solution to the surface, preferably with instant field measurements;(ii)chemical sensors with continuous registration of critical parameters. These techniques would definitely provide an early alert in case when the chemical composition of pore solution percolating downward the waste profile shows unfavorable transformations, which indicate an excessive contaminant load approaching ground water. The problems concerning invasive and stationary monitoring of the vadose zone in SW disposal facilities will be discussed at the background of results of monitoring data and properties of permeable protective/reactive barriers considered for use.

  17. A vadose zone Transport Processes Investigation within the glacial till at the Fernald Environmental Management Project.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schwing, J. (FERMCO Technology Development, Cincinnati, OH); Roepke, Craig Senninger; Brainard, James Robert; Glass, Robert John, Jr.; Mann, Michael J. A.; Holt, Robert M.; Kriel, Kelly

    2007-08-01

    This report describes a model Transport Processes Investigation (TPI) where field-scale vadose zone flow and transport processes are identified and verified through a systematic field investigation at a contaminated DOE site. The objective of the TPI is to help with formulating accurate conceptual models and aid in implementing rational and cost effective site specific characterization strategies at contaminated sites with diverse hydrogeologic settings. Central to the TPI are Transport Processes Characterization (TPC) tests that incorporate field surveys and large-scale infiltration experiments. Hypotheses are formulated based on observed pedogenic and hydrogeologic features as well as information provided by literature searches. The field and literature information is then used to optimize the design of one or more infiltration experiments to field test the hypothesis. Findings from the field surveys and infiltration experiments are then synthesized to formulate accurate flow and transport conceptual models. Here we document a TPI implemented in the glacial till vadose zone at the Fernald Environmental Management Project (FEMP) in Fernald, Ohio, a US Department of Energy (DOE) uranium processing site. As a result of this TPI, the flow and transport mechanisms were identified through visualization of dye stain within extensive macro pore and fracture networks which provided the means for the infiltrate to bypass potential aquatards. Such mechanisms are not addressed in current vadose zone modeling and are generally missed by classical characterization methods.

  18. Water recharge and solute transport through the vadose zone of fractured chalk under desert conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In the present study the inferred mechanism of groundwater recharge and contamination was studied using tracer concentrations in the fractured vadose zone of the Avdat chalk. The results of this study are important for an evaluation of groundwater contamination from existing and planned facilities in the northern Negev desert in Israel. This study focused on the vicinity of the Ramat Hovav industrial chemical complex in the northern Negev, which also includes the national site for hazardous waste. Water recharge and solute migration rates were examined in five core holes and one borehole which penetrate the entire vadose zone and enabled the collection of rock samples for chemical and isotopic analyses, and an observation of fracture distribution with depth. Tritium profiles were used to estimate water percolation rates through the vadose zone, chloride profiles were used to assess the migration rate of nonreactive solutes, and bromide profiles were also used to evaluate the migration rate of nonreactive contaminants. Deuterium and oxygen 18 profiles were used to assess the evaporation of the infiltrating water at and near land surface

  19. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Uncontaminated RCRA Borehole Core Samples and Composite Samples

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Williams, Bruce A.; Lanigan, David C.; Horton, Duane G.; Clayton, Ray E.; Mitroshkov, Alexandre V.; Legore, Virginia L.; O' Hara, Matthew J.; Brown, Christopher F.; Parker, Kent E.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Serne, Jennifer N.; Last, George V.; Smith, Steven C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Zachara, John M.; Burke, Deborah S.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Tables 4.14, 4.16, 5.20, 5.22, 5.43, and 5.45. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in February 2002. The overall goal of the of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediment from within the S-SX Waste Management Area. This report is one in a series of four reports to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) borehole bore samples and composite samples.

  20. Experimental and modeling study of pure terephthalic acid (PTA) wastewater transport in the vadose zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Cuiling; Liu, Changli; Pei, Lixin; Pang, Yajie; Zhang, Yun; Hou, Hongbing

    2015-02-01

    PTA wastewater discharged from a factory was selected as the research object in this project and CODcr was selected as the characteristic pollution factor. Static adsorption and soil column leaching experiments of silty clay and clayey soil were carried out to study the adsorption, bio-degradation and dispersion coefficient of CODcr in PTA wastewater. Hydrus-1D was used to build the convection-diffusion model to demonstrate the migration of PTA wastewater in the vadose zone. The results indicate that silty clay and clayey soil in the vadose zone can adsorb, degrade and impede the contaminants in PTA wastewater; however, the coefficient of adsorption and degradation were very low, they were down to 0.0002 L g(-1), 0.0003 L g(-1) and 0.0097 d(-1), 0.0077 d(-1) for silty clay and clayey soil, respectively. Under the virtual condition that, wastewater in the sewage pool is 5 m deep, CODcr concentration is 4000 mg L(-1), vadose zone is 21 m, PTA wastewater will reach the phreatic surface after 20.87 years. When wastewater in the sewage pool is 7 m with other conditions unchanged, after 17.18 years PTA wastewater will reach groundwater. The results show that there is a higher pollution risk for groundwater if we do not take any anti-seepage measures. PMID:25524255

  1. Evaluating Transport and Attenuation of Inorganic Contaminants in the Vadose Zone for Aqueous Waste Disposal Sites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Oostrom, Martinus [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Tartakovsky, Guzel D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-09-01

    An approach was developed for evaluating vadose zone transport and attenuation of aqueous wastes containing inorganic (non-volatile) contaminants that were disposed of at the land surface (i.e., directly to the ground in cribs, trenches, tile fields, etc.) and their effect on the underlying groundwater. The approach provides a structured method for estimating transport of contaminants through the vadose zone and the resulting temporal profile of groundwater contaminant concentrations. The intent of the approach is also to provide a means for presenting and explaining the results of the transport analysis in the context of the site-specific waste disposal conditions and site properties, including heterogeneities and other complexities. The document includes considerations related to identifying appropriate monitoring to verify the estimated contaminant transport and associated predictions of groundwater contaminant concentrations. While primarily intended for evaluating contaminant transport under natural attenuation conditions, the approach can also be applied to identify types of, and targets for, mitigation approaches in the vadose zone that would reduce the temporal profile of contaminant concentrations in groundwater, if needed.

  2. Vadose Zone Transport Field Study: Detailed Test Plan for Simulated Leak Tests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ward, Anderson L.; Gee, Glendon W.

    2000-06-23

    This report describes controlled transport experiments at well-instrumented field tests to be conducted during FY 2000 in support of DOE?s Vadose Zone Transport Field Study (VZTFS). The VZTFS supports the Groundwater/Vadose Zone Integration Project Science and Technology Initiative. The field tests will improve understanding of field-scale transport and lead to the development or identification of efficient and cost-effective characterization methods. These methods will capture the extent of contaminant plumes using existing steel-cased boreholes. Specific objectives are to 1) identify mechanisms controlling transport processes in soils typical of the hydrogeologic conditions of Hanford?s waste disposal sites; 2) reduce uncertainty in conceptual models; 3) develop a detailed and accurate data base of hydraulic and transport parameters for validation of three-dimensional numerical models; and 4) identify and evaluate advanced, cost-effective characterization methods with the potential to assess changing conditions in the vadose zone, particularly as surrogates of currently undetectable high-risk contaminants. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) manages the VZTFS for DOE.

  3. Deep Vadose Zone Applied Field Research Center: Transformational Technology Development For Environmental Remediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DOE-EM, Office of Groundwater and Soil Remediation and DOE Richland, in collaboration with the Hanford site and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, have established the Deep Vadose Zone Applied Field Research Center (DVZ-AFRC). The DVZ-AFRC leverages DOE investments in basic science from the Office of Science, applied research from DOE EM Office of Technology Innovation and Development, and site operation (e.g., site contractors [CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Contractor and Washington River Protection Solutions], DOE-EM RL and ORP) in a collaborative effort to address the complex region of the deep vadose zone. Although the aim, goal, motivation, and contractual obligation of each organization is different, the integration of these activities into the framework of the DVZ-AFRC brings the resources and creativity of many to provide sites with viable alternative remedial strategies to current baseline approaches for persistent contaminants and deep vadose zone contamination. This cooperative strategy removes stove pipes, prevents duplication of efforts, maximizes resources, and facilitates development of the scientific foundation needed to make sound and defensible remedial decisions that will successfully meet the target cleanup goals for one of DOE EM's most intractable problems, in a manner that is acceptable by regulators.

  4. Changes in water and solute fluxes in the vadose zone after switching crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkeltaub, Tuvia; Dahan, Ofer; Kurtzman, Daniel

    2015-04-01

    Switching crop type and therefore changing irrigation and fertilization regimes leads to alternation in deep percolation and concentrations of solutes in pore water. Changes of fluxes of water, chloride and nitrate under a commercial greenhouse due to a change from tomato to green spices were observed. The site, located above the a coastal aquifer, was monitored for the last four years. A vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS) was implemented under the greenhouse and provided continuous data on both the temporal variation in water content and the chemical composition of pore water at multiple depths in the deep vadose zone (~20 m). Chloride and nitrate profiles, before and after the crop type switching, indicate on a clear alternation in soil water solutes concentrations. Before the switching of the crop type, the average chloride profile ranged from ~130 to ~210, while after the switching, the average profile ranged from ~34 to ~203 mg L-1, 22% reduction in chloride mass. Counter trend was observed for the nitrate concentrations, the average nitrate profile before switching ranged from ~11 to ~44 mg L-1, and after switching, the average profile ranged from ~500 to ~75 mg L-1, 400% increase in nitrate mass. A one dimensional unsaturated water flow and chloride transport model was calibrated to transient deep vadose zone data. A comparison between the simulation results under each of the surface boundary conditions of the vegetables and spices cultivation regime, clearly show a distinct alternation in the quantity and quality of groundwater recharge.

  5. Characterization of the vadose zone above a shallow aquifer contaminated with gas condensate hydrocarbons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A gas production site in the Denver Basin near Ft. Lupton, Colorado has leaked gas condensate hydrocarbons from an underground concrete tank used to store produced water. The leak has contaminated a shallow aquifer. Although the source of pollution has been removed, a plume of hydrocarbon contamination still remains for nearly 46 m from the original source. An extensive monitoring program was conducted in 1993 of the groundwater and saturated sediments. The objective was to determine if intrinsic aerobic or anaerobic bioremediation of hydrocarbons occurred at the site at a rate that would support remediation. Geochemical indicators of hydrogen biodegradation by microorganisms in the saturated zone included oxygen depletion, increased alkalinity, sulfate depletion, methane production and Fe2+ production associated with hydrogen contamination. The presence of sulfate-reducing bacteria and methanogens was also much higher in the contaminated sediments. Degraded hydrocarbon metabolites were found in contaminated groundwater. An extensive characterization of the vadose zone was conducted in which the vadose zone was sample in increments of 15 cm from the surface to the water table at contaminated and non contaminated sites. The samples were tested for individual C3+ hydrocarbons, methane, CO2, total organic carbon, total inorganic carbon, and total petroleum hydrocarbons. The vadose zone consisted of an active and aerobic bioreactor fueled by condensate hydrocarbons transported into the unsaturated zone by evaporation of hydrocarbons at the water table. It was concluded that the unsaturated zone makes an important contribution to the natural attenuation of gas condensate hydrocarbons in the area. 17 refs., 2 tabs., 28 figs

  6. Calibrating vadose zone models with time-lapse gravity data: a forced infiltration experiment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Lars; Hansen, Allan Bo; Zibar, Majken Caroline Looms;

    A change in soil water content is a change in mass stored in the subsurface, and when large enough, can be measured with a gravity meter. Over the last few decades there has been increased use of ground-based time-lapse gravity measurements to infer hydrogeological parameters. These studies have...... focused on the saturated zone, with specific yield as the most prominent target parameter and with few exceptions, changes in storage in the vadose zone have been considered as noise. Here modeling results are presented suggesting that gravity changes will be measureable when soil moisture changes occur...

  7. Carbon dioxide respiration in the deep vadose zone: Implications for groundwater age dating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacon, Diana Holford; Keller, C. Kent

    1998-11-01

    In the deep vadose zone at the Dalmeny site, subsurface gas samples were collected and analyzed for CO2 and the 13C and 14C ratios of that CO2. High concentrations of CO2 depleted in 14C near the water table necessitate the use of an open-system model of calcite dissolution to match observed dissolved inorganic carbon 14C ratios just below the water table. Groundwater age-dating models assuming closed-system calcite dissolution predict incorrect groundwater age dates at the Dalmeny site. These results and our field observations suggest that such errors may generally occur where deep-vadose generation of nonmodern CO2 is not accounted for in groundwater age-dating exercises.

  8. Real Time Monitoring of the Vadose Zone - Key to Groundwater Protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahan, Ofer

    2015-04-01

    Minimization subsurface pollution is much dependent on reliable and effective monitoring tools. Such monitoring tools should be capable to provide real-time information on the chemical and hydrological state of the percolating water, from land surface to the groundwater. Today, most monitoring programs are based on observation wells that enable collection of hydrological and chemical information from the saturated part of the subsurface. As a result, identification of pollution in well water is clear evidence that the contaminants already crossed the entire vadose-zone and accumulated in the aquifer. Unfortunately, only little can be done to fully remediate contaminated aquifers. Accordingly, effective monitoring program must include monitoring means that provide real-time information on the hydrological and chemical properties of the percolating in the unsaturated zone, long before contaminates reach the water-table and accumulate in the aquifers. Such monitoring programs may provide "early warning" for potential pollution processes that may risk groundwater quality. A vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS), which was developed recently, allows continuous monitoring of the hydrological and chemical properties of percolating water in the deep vadose zone. Data which is collected by the system allows direct measurements of the water percolation fluxes and detect the chemical evolution of the percolating water across the entire unsaturated domain. The VMS is designed for long term continuous operation in a time scale of years to decades. Up-to-date the system has been successfully implemented in several studies on water flow and contaminant transport in various hydrological and geological setups. These include research projects on: (a) floodwater infiltration and groundwater recharge from stream channels and reservoirs, (b) impact of various agricultural regimes on quality and quantity of groundwater recharge, (c) subsurface pollution of dairy farms, (d) chemical

  9. Application of Biodegradable Oils (VOSTM) for Treatment of Chlorinated Ethenes in the Vadose Zone - 12085

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Few active remediation alternatives are available to treat residual chlorinated volatile organic compounds (cVOCs) within the vadose zone. Soil vapor extraction (SVE) can be very effective at removing cVOCs in permeable soils; however, recoveries decline substantially in low permeability zones where mass transfer is diffusion-limited. Entrapped cVOCs in these zones represent a slow but continuous source of contamination to underlying groundwater. An ongoing field study was initiated at the Department of Energy's Savannah River Site (SRS) to evaluate an in situ biological treatment technology to address cVOC contamination in the vadose zone. Developed by Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL), VOSTM is a thixotropic (shear thinning) formulation of biodegradable oil, water, nutrients, buffers, and de-chlorinating bacteria (Dehalococcoides sp.) that is designed to sequester and biodegrade slow-diffusing cVOCs from unsaturated, low permeable soils. Injection of 871 L (230 gal) of VOSTM resulted in a rapid and significant decrease in cVOC gas concentration, generation of cVOC daughter products, a decrease in oxygen concentration, and an increase in carbon dioxide and methane production. (authors)

  10. Monitoring the vadose zone in fractured tuff, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Unsaturated tuff beneath Yucca Mountain, Nevada, is being evaluated by the US Department of Energy as a host rock for a potential repository for high-level radioactive waste. As part of the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations Project of the US Department of Energy, the US Geological Survey has been conducting hydrologic, geologic, and geophysical investigations at Yucca Mountain and the surrounding region to provide data evaluation of the potential suitability of the site. Hydrologic investigations of the unsaturated zone at this site were started in 1982. A 17.5-inch- (44.5-centimeter-) diameter borehole (USW UZ-1) was drilled by the reverse-air vacuum-drilling technique to a depth of 1269 feet (387 meters). This borehole was instrumented at 33 depth levels. At 15 of the levels, 3 well screens were embedded in coarse-sand columns. The sand columns were isolated from each other by thin layers of bentonite, columns of silica flour, and isolation plugs consisting of expansive cement. Thermocouple psychrometers and pressure transducers were installed within the screens and connected to the data-acquisition system at the land surface through thermocouple and logging cables. Two of the screens at each level were equipped with access tubes to allow collection of pore-gas samples. In addition to these instruments, 18 heat-dissipation probes were installed within the columns of silica flour, some of which also had thermocouple psychrometers. 20 refs., 13 figs., 2 tabs

  11. Vadose zone monitoring plan using geophysical nuclear logging for radionuclides discharged to Hanford liquid waste disposal facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    During plutonium production at Hanford, large quantities of hazardous and radioactive liquid effluent waste have been discharged to the subsurface (vadose zone). These discharges at over 330 liquid effluent disposal facilities (ie. cribs, ditches, and ponds) account for over 3,000,000 curies of radioactive waste released into the subsurface. It is estimated that 10% of the contaminants have reached the groundwater in many places. Continuing migration may further impact groundwater quality in the future. Through the RCRA Operational Monitoring Program, a Radionuclide Logging System (RLS) has been obtained by Hanford Technical Services (HTS) and enhanced to measure the distribution of contaminants and monitor radionuclide movement in existing groundwater and vadose zone boreholes. Approximately 100 wells are logged by HTS each year in this program. In some cases, movement has been observed years after discharges were terminated. A similar program is in place to monitor the vadose zone at the Tank Farms. This monitoring plan describes Hanford Programs for monitoring the movement of radioactive contamination in the vadose zone. Program background, drivers, and strategy are presented. The objective of this program is to ensure that DOE-RL is aware of any migration of contaminants in the vadose zone, such that groundwater can be protected and early actions can be taken as needed

  12. Improvements to measuring water flux in the vadose zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masarik, Kevin C; Norman, John M; Brye, Kristofor R; Baker, John M

    2004-01-01

    Evaluating the impact of land use practices on ground water quality has been difficult because few techniques are capable of monitoring the quality and quantity of soil water flow below the root zone without disturbing the soil profile and affecting natural flow processes. A recently introduced method, known as equilibrium tension lysimetry, was a major improvement but it was not a true equilibrium since it still required manual intervention to maintain proper lysimeter suction. We addressed this issue by developing an automated equilibrium tension lysimeter (AETL) system that continuously matches lysimeter tension to soil-water matric potential of the surrounding soil. The soil-water matric potential of the bulk soil is measured with a heat-dissipation sensor, and a small DC pump is used to apply suction to a lysimeter. The improved automated approach reported here was tested in the field for a 12-mo period. Powered by a small 12-V rechargeable battery, the AETLs were able to continuously match lysimeter suction to soil-water matric potential for 2-wk periods with minimal human attention, along with the added benefit of collecting continuous soil-water matric potential data. We also demonstrated, in the laboratory, methods for continuous measurement of water depth in the AETL, a capability that quantifies drainage on a 10-min interval, making it a true water-flux meter. Equilibrium tension lysimeters have already been demonstrated to be a reliable method of measuring drainage flux, and the further improvements have created a more effective device for studying water drainage and chemical leaching through the soil matrix. PMID:15224955

  13. Vadose zone characterization project at the Hanford Tank Farms: U Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The U.S. Department of Energy Grand Junction Office (DOE-GJO) was tasked by the DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) to perform a baseline characterization of the gamma-ray-emitting radionuclides that are distributed in the vadose zone sediments beneath and around the single-shell tanks (SSTs) at the Hanford Site. The intent of this characterization is to determine the nature and extent of the contamination, to identify contamination sources when possible, and to develop a baseline of the contamination distribution that will permit future data comparisons. This characterization work also allows an initial assessment of the impacts of the vadose zone contamination as required by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This characterization project involves acquiring information regarding vadose zone contamination with borehole geophysical logging methods and documenting that information in a series of reports. This information is presently limited to detection of gamma-emitting radionuclides from both natural and man-made sources. Data from boreholes surrounding each tank are compiled into individual Tank Summary Data Reports. The data from each tank in a tank farm are then compiled and summarized in a Tank Farm Report. This document is the Tank Farm Report for the U Tank Farm. Logging operations used high-purity germanium detection systems to acquire laboratory-quality assays of the gamma-emitting radionuclides in the sediments around and below the tanks. These assays were acquired in 59 boreholes that surround the U Tank Farm tanks. Logging of all boreholes was completed in December 1995, and the last Tank Summary Data Report for the U Tank Farm was issued in September 1996

  14. Vertical Extent of 100 Area Vadose Zone Contamination of Metals at the Hanford Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khaleel, R.; Mehta, S.

    2012-12-01

    The 100 Area is part of the U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site in southeastern Washington and borders the Columbia River. The primary sources of contamination in the area are associated with the operation of nine former production reactors, the last one shutting down in 1988. The area is undergoing a CERCLA remedial investigation (RI) that will provide data to support final cleanup decisions. During reactor operations, cooling water contaminated with radioactive and hazardous chemicals was discharged to both the adjacent Columbia River and infiltration cribs and trenches. Contaminated solid wastes were disposed of in burial grounds; the estimated Lead-Cadmium used as "reactor poison" and disposed of in 100 Area burial grounds is 1103 metric tons, of which up to 1059 metric tons are Lead and 44 metric tons are Cadmium. We summarize vadose zone site characterization data for the recently drilled boreholes, including the vertical distribution of concentration profiles for metals (i.e., Lead, Arsenic and Mercury) under the near neutral pH and oxygenated conditions. The deep borehole measurements targeted in the RI work plan were identified with a bias towards locating contaminants throughout the vadose zone and targeted areas at or near the waste sites; i.e., the drilling as well as the sampling was biased towards capturing contamination within the "hot spots." Unlike non-reactive contaminants such as tritium, Arsenic, Mercury and Lead are known to have a higher distribution coefficient (Kd), expected to be relatively immobile, and have a long residence time within the vadose zone. However, a number of sediment samples located close to the water table exceed the background concentrations for Lead and Arsenic. Three conceptual models are postulated to explain the deeper than expected penetration for the metals.

  15. Vadose zone characterization project at the Hanford Tank Farms: U Tank Farm Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-05-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy Grand Junction Office (DOE-GJO) was tasked by the DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) to perform a baseline characterization of the gamma-ray-emitting radionuclides that are distributed in the vadose zone sediments beneath and around the single-shell tanks (SSTs) at the Hanford Site. The intent of this characterization is to determine the nature and extent of the contamination, to identify contamination sources when possible, and to develop a baseline of the contamination distribution that will permit future data comparisons. This characterization work also allows an initial assessment of the impacts of the vadose zone contamination as required by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This characterization project involves acquiring information regarding vadose zone contamination with borehole geophysical logging methods and documenting that information in a series of reports. This information is presently limited to detection of gamma-emitting radionuclides from both natural and man-made sources. Data from boreholes surrounding each tank are compiled into individual Tank Summary Data Reports. The data from each tank in a tank farm are then compiled and summarized in a Tank Farm Report. This document is the Tank Farm Report for the U Tank Farm. Logging operations used high-purity germanium detection systems to acquire laboratory-quality assays of the gamma-emitting radionuclides in the sediments around and below the tanks. These assays were acquired in 59 boreholes that surround the U Tank Farm tanks. Logging of all boreholes was completed in December 1995, and the last Tank Summary Data Report for the U Tank Farm was issued in September 1996.

  16. Geochemical Processes Controlling Migration of High Level Wastes in Hanford's Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zachara, John M.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Freshley, Mark D.; Mann, Frederick M.; Anderson, Frank J.; Wood, Marcus I.; Jones, Thomas E.; Myers, David A.

    2007-11-10

    High level nuclear wastes (HLW) from Hanford’s plutonium reprocessing are stored in massive, buried, single-shell tanks in eighteen tank farms. The wastes were initially hot because of radioactive decay, and many exhibited extreme chemical character in terms of pH, salinity, and radionuclide concentration. At present, 67 of the 149 single shell tanks are suspected to have released over 1.9 million L of tank waste to the vadose zone, with most leak events occurring between 1950 and 1975. Boreholes have been placed through the largest vadose zone plumes to define the extent of contaminant migration, and to develop conceptual models of processes governing the transformation, retardation, and overall transport of tank waste residuals. Laboratory studies with sediments so collected have shown that ion exchange, precipitation and dissolution, and surface complexation reactions have occurred between the HLW and subsurface sediments moderating their chemical character, and retarding the migration of select contaminants. Processes suspected to facilitate the far-field migration of immobile radionuclides including stable aqueous complex formation and mobile colloids were found to be potentially operative, but unlikely to occur in the field, with the exception of cyanide-facilitated migration of 60Co. Fission product oxyanions are the most mobile of tank waste constituents because their adsorption is suppressed by large concentrations of waste anions; the vadose zone clay fraction is negative in surface charge; and, unlike Cr, their reduced forms are unstable in oxidizing environments. Reaction/process-based transport modeling is beginning to be used for predictions of future contaminant mobility and plume evolution.

  17. Geochemical Processes Controlling Migration of High Level Wastes in Hanford's Vadose Zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    High level nuclear wastes (HLW) from Hanford's plutonium reprocessing are stored in massive, buried, single-shell tanks in eighteen tank farms. The wastes were initially hot because of radioactive decay, and many exhibited extreme chemical character in terms of pH, salinity, and radionuclide concentration. At present, 67 of the 149 single shell tanks are suspected to have released over 1.9 million L of tank waste to the vadose zone, with most leak events occurring between 1950 and 1975. Boreholes have been placed through the largest vadose zone plumes to define the extent of contaminant migration, and to develop conceptual models of processes governing the transformation, retardation, and overall transport of tank waste residuals. Laboratory studies with sediments so collected have shown that ion exchange, precipitation and dissolution, and surface complexation reactions have occurred between the HLW and subsurface sediments moderating their chemical character, and retarding the migration of select contaminants. Processes suspected to facilitate the far-field migration of immobile radionuclides including stable aqueous complex formation and mobile colloids were found to be potentially operative, but unlikely to occur in the field, with the exception of cyanide-facilitated migration of 60Co. Fission product oxyanions are the most mobile of tank waste constituents because their adsorption is suppressed by large concentrations of waste anions; the vadose zone clay fraction is negative in surface charge; and, unlike Cr, their reduced forms are unstable in oxidizing environments. Reaction/process-based transport modeling is beginning to be used for predictions of future contaminant mobility and plume evolution

  18. The Use of Radar Methods to Determine Moisture Content in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rosemary Knight

    2003-12-28

    Water content is a critical parameter affecting both liquid-phase and vapor-phase contaminant transport in the vadose zone. This means that accurate estimates of in situ water content must be obtained in order to design for the appropriate handling or remediation of a contaminated region of the vadose zone. Traditional methods of sampling the subsurface by drilling and/or direct sampling are very time consuming, limited in terms of spatial coverage, and have the associated risk of contacting and increasing the size of the contaminated area. One solution is to use geophysical methods which can provide a high-resolution, non-invasive means of sampling or imaging the subsurface. The overall objective of our research, defined at the start of this project, was to advance the usefulness of radar methods (ground-based and borehole) as a means of characterizing water content in the vadose zone. We have met this objective by providing research results that can be used to (1) improve the accuracy of water content estimates from radar measurements; (2) provide estimates of the potential error in water content estimates from radar measurements; (3) improve the clarity of radar images; (4) develop large-scale models of the subsurface ''architecture'' using radar images; (5) develop ways of quantifying the spatial heterogeneity of the subsurface through analysis of radar images. We have also been able to identify the critical areas where more research is needed in order to be able to use radar methods most effectively as an accurate means of subsurface characterization.

  19. Instrumentation and computational techniques and resulting geostatistical characterization of INEL vadose zone basalt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The geostatistical characterization of the Eastern Snake River Plains (ESRP) basalt found in the vadose zone at Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) depend heavily upon instrumentation and computer programs developed by the INEL Geoscience Unit personnel. Laboratory measurements of permeability, porosity, density, capillary pressure-pore-size distributions, and surface area were carried out with equipment developed and fabricated at INEL, and computation of the characterization parameters was carried out using personal computers, with computer programs specifically written for this purpose by the authors. Geostatistical analysis results from Hell's Half Acre were also used to develop distribution models for medial/distal length:width:thickness substrate elements. 3 refs., 10 figs

  20. Interfacial Reduction-Oxidation Mechanisms Governing Fate and Transport of Contaminants in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baolin Deng; Edward Thornton; Kirk Cantrell; Khris Olsen; James Amonette

    2004-01-11

    Immobilization of toxic and radioactive metals in the vadose zone by In Situ Gaseous Reduction (ISGR) using hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is a promising technology for soil remediation. Earlier laboratory and field studies have shown that Cr(VI) can be effectively immobilized by treatment with dilute gaseous H2S. The objective of this project is to characterize the interactions among H2S, the metal contaminants, and soil components. Understanding these interactions is needed to assess the long-term effectiveness of the technology and to optimize the remediation system.

  1. Vadose zone characterization project at the Hanford Tank Farms: BY Tank Farm report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The US Department of Energy Grand Junction Office (GJO) was tasked by the DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) to perform a baseline characterization of the contamination distributed in the vadoze zone sediment beneath and around the single-shell tanks (SSTs) at the Hanford Site. The intent of this characterization is to determine the nature and extent of the contamination, to identify contamination sources, and to develop a baseline of the contamination distribution that will permit future data comparisons. This characterization work also allows an initial assessment of the impacts of the vadose zone contamination as required by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This characterization project involves acquiring information about the vadose zone contamination with borehole geophysical logging methods and documenting that information in a series of reports. Data from boreholes surrounding each tank are compiled into individual Tank Summary Data Reports. The data from each tank farm are then compiled and summarized in a Tank Farm Report. This document is the Tank Farm Report for the BY Tank Farm

  2. Rectangular Schlumberger resistivity arrays for delineating vadose zone clay-lined fractures in shallow tuff

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miele, M. [ICF Kaiser, Rancho Cordova, CA (United States); Laymon, D. [ICF Kaiser, Chicago, IL (United States); Gilkeson, R. [ERM PMC Inc., Los Alamos, New Mexico (United States); Michelotti, R. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)

    1996-05-01

    Rectangular Schlumberger arrays can be used for 2-dimensional lateral profiling of apparent resistivity at a unique current electrode separation, hence single depth of penetration. Numerous apparent resistivity measurements are collected moving the potential electrodes (fixed MN spacing) within a rectangle of defined dimensions. The method provides a fast, cost-effective means for the collection of dense resistivity data to provide high-resolution information on subsurface hydrogeologic conditions. Several rectangular Schlumberger resistivity arrays were employed at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) from 1989 through 1995 in an area adjacent to and downhill from an outfall pipe, septic tank, septic drainfield, and sump. Six rectangular arrays with 2 AB spacings were used to delineate lateral low resistivity anomalies that may be related to fractures that contain clay and/or vadose zone water. Duplicate arrays collected over a three year time period exhibited very good data repeatability. The properties of tritium make it an excellent groundwater tracer. Because tritium was present in discharged water from all of the anthropogenic sources in the vicinity it was used for this purpose. One major low resistivity anomaly correlates with relatively high tritium concentrations in the tuff. This was determined from borehole samples collected within and outside of the anomalous zone. The anomaly is interpreted to be due to fractures that contain clay from the soil profile. The clay was deposited in the fractures by aeolian processes and by surface water infiltration. The fractures likely served as a shallow vadose zone groundwater pathway.

  3. Rectangular Schlumberger resistivity arrays for delineating vadose zone clay-lined fractures in shallow tuff

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rectangular Schlumberger arrays can be used for 2-dimensional lateral profiling of apparent resistivity at a unique current electrode separation, hence single depth of penetration. Numerous apparent resistivity measurements are collected moving the potential electrodes (fixed MN spacing) within a rectangle of defined dimensions. The method provides a fast, cost-effective means for the collection of dense resistivity data to provide high-resolution information on subsurface hydrogeologic conditions. Several rectangular Schlumberger resistivity arrays were employed at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) from 1989 through 1995 in an area adjacent to and downhill from an outfall pipe, septic tank, septic drainfield, and sump. Six rectangular arrays with 2 AB spacings were used to delineate lateral low resistivity anomalies that may be related to fractures that contain clay and/or vadose zone water. Duplicate arrays collected over a three year time period exhibited very good data repeatability. The properties of tritium make it an excellent groundwater tracer. Because tritium was present in discharged water from all of the anthropogenic sources in the vicinity it was used for this purpose. One major low resistivity anomaly correlates with relatively high tritium concentrations in the tuff. This was determined from borehole samples collected within and outside of the anomalous zone. The anomaly is interpreted to be due to fractures that contain clay from the soil profile. The clay was deposited in the fractures by aeolian processes and by surface water infiltration. The fractures likely served as a shallow vadose zone groundwater pathway

  4. Vadose zone characterization project at the Hanford Tank Farms: BY Tank Farm report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kos, S.E.

    1997-02-01

    The US Department of Energy Grand Junction Office (GJO) was tasked by the DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL) to perform a baseline characterization of the contamination distributed in the vadoze zone sediment beneath and around the single-shell tanks (SSTs) at the Hanford Site. The intent of this characterization is to determine the nature and extent of the contamination, to identify contamination sources, and to develop a baseline of the contamination distribution that will permit future data comparisons. This characterization work also allows an initial assessment of the impacts of the vadose zone contamination as required by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This characterization project involves acquiring information about the vadose zone contamination with borehole geophysical logging methods and documenting that information in a series of reports. Data from boreholes surrounding each tank are compiled into individual Tank Summary Data Reports. The data from each tank farm are then compiled and summarized in a Tank Farm Report. This document is the Tank Farm Report for the BY Tank Farm.

  5. Vadose zone attenuation of organic compounds at a crude oil spill site - Interactions between biogeochemical reactions and multicomponent gas transport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molins, S.; Mayer, K.U.; Amos, R.T.; Bekins, B.A.

    2010-01-01

    Contaminant attenuation processes in the vadose zone of a crude oil spill site near Bemidji, MN have been simulated with a reactive transport model that includes multicomponent gas transport, solute transport, and the most relevant biogeochemical reactions. Dissolution and volatilization of oil components, their aerobic and anaerobic degradation coupled with sequential electron acceptor consumption, ingress of atmospheric O2, and the release of CH4 and CO2 from the smear zone generated by the floating oil were considered. The focus of the simulations was to assess the dynamics between biodegradation and gas transport processes in the vadose zone, to evaluate the rates and contributions of different electron accepting processes towards vadose zone natural attenuation, and to provide an estimate of the historical mass loss. Concentration distributions of reactive (O2, CH4, and CO2) and non-reactive (Ar and N2) gases served as key constraints for the model calibration. Simulation results confirm that as of 2007, the main degradation pathway can be attributed to methanogenic degradation of organic compounds in the smear zone and the vadose zone resulting in a contaminant plume dominated by high CH4 concentrations. In accordance with field observations, zones of volatilization and CH4 generation are correlated to slightly elevated total gas pressures and low partial pressures of N2 and Ar, while zones of aerobic CH4 oxidation are characterized by slightly reduced gas pressures and elevated concentrations of N2 and Ar. Diffusion is the most significant transport mechanism for gases in the vadose zone; however, the simulations also indicate that, despite very small pressure gradients, advection contributes up to 15% towards the net flux of CH4, and to a more limited extent to O2 ingress. Model calibration strongly suggests that transfer of biogenically generated gases from the smear zone provides a major control on vadose zone gas distributions and vadose zone carbon

  6. Simulations of Groundwater Flow and Radionuclide Transport in the Vadose and Saturated Zones beneath Area G, Los Alamos National Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kay H. Birdsell; Kathleen M. Bower; Andrew V. Wolfsberg; Wendy E. Soll; Terry A. Cherry; Tade W. Orr

    1999-07-01

    Numerical simulations are used to predict the migration of radionuclides from the disposal units at Material Disposal Area G through the vadose zone and into the main aquifer in support of a radiological performance assessment and composite analysis for the site. The calculations are performed with the finite element code, FEHM. The transport of nuclides through the vadose zone is computed using a three-dimensional model that describes the complex mesa top geology of the site. The model incorporates the positions and inventories of thirty-four disposal pits and four shaft fields located at Area G as well as those of proposed future pits and shafts. Only three nuclides, C-14, Tc-99, and I-129, proved to be of concern for the groundwater pathway over a 10,000-year period. The spatial and temporal flux of these three nuclides from the vadose zone is applied as a source term for the three-dimensional saturated zone model of the main aquifer that underlies the site. The movement of these nuclides in the aquifer to a downstream location is calculated, and aquifer concentrations are converted to doses. Doses related to aquifer concentrations are six or more orders of magnitude lower than allowable Department of Energy performance objectives for low-level radioactive waste sites. Numerical studies were used to better understand vadose-zone flow through the dry mesa-top environment at Area G. These studies helped define the final model used to model flow and transport through the vadose zone. The study of transient percolation indicates that a steady flow vadose-zone model is adequate for computing contaminant flux to the aquifer. The fracture flow studies and the investigation of the effect of basalt and pumice properties helped us define appropriate hydrologic properties for the modeling. Finally, the evaporation study helped to justify low infiltration rates.

  7. Soil Moisture Flow and Nitrate Movement Simulation through Deep and Heterogeneous Vadose Zone using Dual-porosity Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, B. K.; Tomar, J.; Harter, T.

    2014-12-01

    We investigate nitrate movement from non-point sources in deep, heterogeneous vadose zones, using multi-dimensional variably saturated flow and transport simulations. We hypothesize that porous media heterogeneity causes saturation variability that leads to preferential flow systems such that a significant portion of the vadose zone does not significantly contribute to flow. We solve Richards' equation and the advection-dispersion equation to simulate soil moisture and nitrate transport regimes in plot-scale experiments conducted in the San Joaquin Valley, California. We compare equilibrium against non-equilibrium (dual-porosity) approaches. In the equilibrium approach we consider each soil layer to have unique hydraulic properties as a whole, while in the dual-porosity approach we assume that large fractions of the porous flow domain are immobile. However we consider exchange of water and solute between mobile and immobile zone using the appropriate mass transfer terms. The results indicate that flow and transport in a nearly 16 m deep stratified vadose zone comprised of eight layers of unconsolidated alluvium experiences highly non-uniform, localized preferential flow and transport patterns leading to accelerated nitrate transfer. The equilibrium approach largely under-predicted the leaching of nitrate to groundwater while the dual-porosity approach showed higher rates of nitrate leaching, consistent with field observations. The dual-porosity approach slightly over-predicted nitrogen storage in the vadose zone, which may be the result of limited matrix flow or denitrification not accounted for in the model. Results of this study may be helpful to better predict fertilizer and pesticide retention times in deep vadose zone, prior to recharge into the groundwater flow system. Keywords: Nitrate, Preferential flow, Heterogeneous vadose zone, Dual-porosity approach

  8. Multiple lines of evidence to demonstrate vinyl chloride aerobic biodegradation in the vadose zone, and factors controlling rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, B. M.; Aravena, R.; Davis, G. B.; Furness, A. J.; Bastow, T. P.; Bouchard, D.

    2013-10-01

    A field-based investigation was conducted at a contaminated site where the vadose zone was contaminated with a range of chlorinated hydrocarbons. The investigation consisted of groundwater and multilevel soil-gas monitoring of a range of contaminants and gases, along with isotope measurements and microbiology studies. The investigation provided multiple lines of evidence that demonstrated aerobic biodegradation of vinyl chloride (VC) was occurring in the vadose zone (i) above the on-site source zone, and (ii) above the downgradient off-site groundwater plume location. Data from both the on-site and off-site locations were consistent in showing substantially greater (an order of magnitude greater) rates of VC removal from the aerobic vadose zone compared to more recalcitrant contaminants trichloroethene (TCE) and tetrachloroethene (PCE). Soil gas VC isotope analysis showed substantial isotopic enrichment of VC (δ13C - 5.2 to - 10.9‰) compared to groundwater (δ13C - 39.5‰) at the on-site location. Soil gas CO2 isotope analysis at both locations showed that CO2 was highly isotopically depleted (δ13C - 28.8 to - 33.3‰), compared to soil gas CO2 data originating from natural sediment organic matter (δ13C = - 14.7 to - 21.3‰). The soil gas CO2 δ13C values were consistent with near-water table VC groundwater δ13C values (- 36.8 to - 39.5‰), suggesting CO2 originating from aerobic biodegradation of VC. Bacteria that had functional genes (ethene monooxygenase (etnC) and epoxyalkane transferase (etnE) involved in ethene metabolism and VC oxidation were more abundant at the source zone where oxygen co-existed with VC. The distribution of VC and oxygen vadose zone vapour plumes, together with long-term changes in soil gas CO2 concentrations and temperature, provided information to elucidate the factors controlling aerobic biodegradation of VC in the vadose zone. Based on the overlapping VC and oxygen vadose zone vapour plumes, aerobic vapour biodegradation

  9. Application of Vadose Zone Monitoring Technology for Characterization of Leachate Generation in Landfills

    Science.gov (United States)

    aharoni, imri; dahan, ofer

    2016-04-01

    Ground water contamination due to landfill leachate percolation is considered the most severe environmental threat related to municipal solid waste landfills. Natural waste degradation processes in landfills normally produce contaminated leachates up to decades after the waste has been buried. Studies have shown that understanding the mechanisms which govern attenuation processes and the fate of pollutants in the waste and in the underlying unsaturated zone is crucial for evaluation of environmental risks and selection of a restoration strategy. This work focuses on a closed landfill in the coastal plain of Israel that was active until 2002 without any lining infrastructure. A vadose zone monitoring system (VMS) that was implemented at the site enables continuous measurements across the waste body (15 m thick) and underlying sandy vadose zone (16 m thick). Data collected by the VMS included continuous measurements of water content as well as chemical composition of the leachates across the entire waste and vadose zone cross section. Results indicated that winter rain percolated through the waste, generating wetting waves which were observed across the waste and unsaturated sediment from land surface until groundwater at 31 m bls. Quick percolation and high fluxes were observed in spite of the clay cover that was implemented at the site as part of the rehabilitation scheme. The results show that the flow pattern is controlled by a preferential mechanism within the waste body. Specific sections showed rapid fluxes in response to rain events, while other sections remained unaffected. In the underlying sandy vadose zone the flow pattern exhibited characteristics of matrix flow. Yet, some sections received higher fluxes due to the uneven discharge of leachates from the overlying waste body. Water samples collected from the waste layer indicate production of highly polluted leachates over 14 years after the landfill was closed. The chemical composition within the waste

  10. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments from C Waste Management Area: Investigation of the C-152 Transfer Line Leak

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Lanigan, David C.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Clayton, Ray E.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Iovin, Cristian; Clayton, Eric T.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Orr, Robert D.

    2008-09-11

    The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in January 2007. The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities at Hanford. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., tasked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within waste management area (WMA) C. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physiochemical characterization data compiled on vadose zone sediment recovered from direct-push samples collected around the site of an unplanned release (UPR), UPR-200-E-82, adjacent to the 241-C-152 Diversion Box located in WMA C.

  11. Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test for the Hanford Central Plateau: Interim Post-Desiccation Monitoring Results, Fiscal Year 2014

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Strickland, Christopher E.; Johnson, Christian D.; Johnson, Timothy C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Chronister, Glen B.

    2014-09-01

    Over decades of operation, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its predecessors have released nearly 2 trillion L (450 billion gal.) of liquid into the vadose zone at the Hanford Site. Much of this discharge of liquid waste into the vadose zone occurred in the Central Plateau, a 200 km2 (75 mi2) area that includes approximately 800 waste sites. Some of the inorganic and radionuclide contaminants in the deep vadose zone at the Hanford Site are at depths below the limit of direct exposure pathways, but may need to be remediated to protect groundwater. The Tri-Party Agencies (DOE, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Washington State Department of Ecology) established Milestone M 015 50, which directed DOE to submit a treatability test plan for remediation of technetium-99 (Tc-99) and uranium in the deep vadose zone. These contaminants are mobile in the subsurface environment and have been detected at high concentrations deep in the vadose zone, and at some locations have reached groundwater. Testing technologies for remediating Tc-99 and uranium will also provide information relevant for remediating other contaminants in the vadose zone. A field test of desiccation is being conducted as an element of the DOE test plan published in March 2008 to meet Milestone M 015 50. The active desiccation portion of the test has been completed. Monitoring data have been collected at the field test site during the post-desiccation period and are reported herein. This is an interim data summary report that includes about 3 years of post-desiccation monitoring data. The DOE field test plan proscribes a total of 5 years of post-desiccation monitoring.

  12. Field gas chromatography analysis as input for vadose zone modeling: A case study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    At Williams Air Force Base (AFB) in Mesa, Arizona, jet fuel contamination in the vadose zone was characterized using field gas chromatograph (GC) analysis only. Because of the thick vadose zone at Williams AFB (210 ft), a cost-effective field program that gathered enough data to adequately characterize the site for multiphase flow and transport modeling had to be developed. Because the data would be used only as input into the modeling effort, the project team decided to maximize the amount of field screening data while eliminating the fixed-base laboratory data. The field program included drilling 15 borings 215 ft below land surface, just below the groundwater table, collecting split-spoon soil samples at 10-ft intervals, and analyzing all samples for total petroleum hydrocarbons (Modified 8015 JP-4 standard) and benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes (Method 8020) using an on-site field GC. The data were input into the two-dimensional Multiphase Flow and Transport Computer Model (MOTRANS). The model was calibrated to existing site conditions by simulating a jet fuel spill near ground surface and projecting migration for 20 years, which corresponds to the estimated amount of time since the first fuel spill at the Base

  13. Characterization of Contaminant Transport by Gravity, Capillarity and Barometric Pumping in Heterogeneous Vadose Zones

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carrigan, C R; Martins, S A; Ramirez, A L; Daily, W D; Hudson, G B; Ralsont, D; Ekwurzel, B

    2001-02-27

    This final report summarizes the work and accomplishments of our three-year project. We have pursued the concept of a Vadose-Zone Observatory (VZO) to provide the field laboratory necessary for carrying out the experiments required to achieve the goals of this research. Our approach has been (1) to carry out plume release experiments at a VZO allowing the acquisition of several different kinds of raw data that (2) are analyzed and evaluated with the aid of highly detailed, diagnostic numerical models. The key feature of the VZO constructed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is the variety of plume-tracking techniques that can be used at a single location. Electric resistance tomography (ERT) uses vertical arrays of electrodes across the vadose zone that can monitor electrical resistance changes in the soil as a plume moves downward to the water table. These resistance changes can be used to provide ''snapshots'' of the progress of the plume. Additionally, monitoring wells have been completed at multiple levels in the vicinity of a central infiltration site. Sensors emplaced at different levels include electrically conducting gypsum blocks for detecting saturation changes, thermistors for monitoring temperature changes and pressure transducers for observing barometric changes at different levels in the vadose regime. The data from these sensors are providing important information about the state of the gas- and liquid-phase dynamics of the infiltration process. Similarly, access ports at different levels have been used to supply gas-phase samples while lysimeters yield liquid-phase samples. Studies involving gas-phase tracers were carried out at LLNL and at an Orange County Water District site in southern California to evaluate the time-dependent chemical signature of a plume that was spiked with an array of dissolved noble-gas tracers. Our work also correlate chemical signatures with those of the above-mentioned sensors that track

  14. Implementation Plan for the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Center

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Truex, Michael J.; Freshley, Mark D.; Gephart, Roy E.; Triplett, Mark B.; Johnson, Timothy C.

    2011-02-11

    The Long-Range Deep Vadose Zone Program Plan was published in October 2010. It summarized the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) state-of-knowledge about the contaminant remediation challenges facing the deep vadose zone (DVZ) beneath the Central Plateau of the Hanford Site and their approach to solving those challenges. Developing an implementation plan is the next step to address the knowledge and capabilities required to solve DVZ challenges when needed. This multi-year plan (FY-11 through FY-20) identifies the short to long-term research, management, and execution plans required to solve those problems facing the DVZ-Applied Field Research Center (DVZ-AFRC). The schedule supporting implementation overlies existing activities and milestones from Hanford’s DOE-Environmental Management (EM) end-user projects. Success relies upon multi-project teams focused on coordinated subsurface projects undertaken across the DOE Complex combined with facilitated, problem-focused, research investments implemented through the DVZ-AFRC.

  15. Migration and degradation of fuel vapours in the vadose zone. Field experiment at airbase Værløse

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christophersen, Mette; Broholm, Mette Martina; Kjeldsen, Peter

    2002-01-01

    Fuel has been spilled in the vadose zone at many sites. An artificial jet fuel source has been installed in a vadose zone (3.5 m sand) at Airbase Værløse. The field experiment is conducted to investigate the natural attenuation potential in order to obtain better evaluations of the risk for ground...... water contamination. The migration of the hydrocarbon vapours has been monitored intensively together with the hydrocarbon concentrations in the pore water and the groundwater. The results so far indicate that for most of the compounds degradation is significantly decreasing the concentrations...

  16. Preferential Flow and Transport of Cryptosporidium Parvum Oocysts Through Vadose Zone: Experiments and Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darnault, C. J.; Darnault, C. J.; Garnier, P.; Kim, Y.; Oveson, K.; Jenkins, M.; Ghiorse, W.; Baveye, P.; Parlange, J.; Steenhuis, T.

    2001-12-01

    Oocysts of the protozoan Cryptosporidium parvum, when they contaminate drinking water supplies, can cause outbreaks of Cryptosporidiosis, a common waterborne disease. Of the different pathways by which oocysts can wind up in drinking water, one has received very little attention to date; because soils are often considered to be perfect filters, the transport of oocysts through the subsoil to groundwater by preferential flow is generally ignored. To evaluate its significance, three set of laboratory experiments investigated transport of oocysts through vadose zone. Experiment set I was carried out in a vertical 50 cm-long column filled with silica sand, under conditions known to foster fingered flow. Experiment set II investigates the effect of gas-water interfaces by modifying the hydrodynamical conditions in the sand columns with water-repellent sand barriers. Experiment III involved undisturbed soil columns subjected to macropores flow. The sand and soil columns were subjected to artificial rainfall and were allowed to reach steady-state. At that point, feces of contaminated calves were applied at the surface, along with a known amount of KCl to serve as tracer, and rainfall was continued at the same rate. The breakthrough of oocysts and Cl-, monitored in the effluent, demonstrate the importance of preferential flow - fingered flow and macropore flow - on the transport of oocysts through vadose zone. Peak oocyst concentrations were not appreciably delayed, compared to Cl-, and in some cases, occurred even before the Cl- peak. However, the numbers of oocysts present in the effluents were still orders of magnitude higher than the 5 to 10 oocysts per liter that are considerable sufficient to cause cryptosporidiosis in healthy adults. The transport of oocysts was simulated based on a partitioning the soil profile in both a distribution zone and a preferential zone, In particular, the model simulates accurately the markedly asymmetric breakthrough patterns, and the

  17. Which key properties controls the preferential transport in the vadose zone under transient hydrological conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groh, J.; Vanderborght, J.; Puetz, T.; Gerke, H. H.; Rupp, H.; Wollschlaeger, U.; Stumpp, C.; Priesack, E.; Vereecken, H.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding water flow and solute transport in the unsaturated zone is of great importance for an appropriate land use management strategy. The quantification and prediction of water and solute fluxes through the vadose zone can help to improve management practices in order to limit potential risk on our fresh water resources. Water related solute transport and residence time is strongly affected by preferential flow paths in the soil. Water flow in soils depends on soil properties and site factors (climate or experiment conditions, land use) and are therefore important factors to understand preferential solute transport in the unsaturated zone. However our understanding and knowledge of which on-site properties or conditions define and enhance preferential flow and transport is still poor and mostly limited onto laboratory experimental conditions (small column length and steady state boundary conditions). Within the TERENO SOILCan lysimeter network, which was designed to study the effects of climate change on soil functions, a bromide tracer was applied on 62 lysimeter at eight different test sites between Dec. 2013 and Jan. 2014. The TERENO SOILCan infrastructure offers the unique possibility to study the occurrence of preferential flow and transport of various soil types under different natural transient hydrological conditions and land use (crop, bare and grassland) at eight TERENO SOILCan observatories. Working with lysimeter replicates at each observatory allows defining the spatial variability of preferential transport and flow. Additionally lysimeters in the network were transferred within and between observatories in order to subject them to different rainfall and temperature regimes and enable us to relate the soil type susceptibility of preferential flow and transport not only to site specific physical and land use properties, but also to different transient boundary conditions. Comparison and statistical analysis between preferential flow indicators 5

  18. Geochemical reactions during biodegradation/vapor-extraction remediation of petroleum contamination in the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hydrocarbon concentrations in soil water and vapor are generally used to evaluate the progress of biodegradation and vapor extraction of petroleum contamination in the unsaturated zone. This study shows that changes in the inorganic composition of vadose zone water samples can be used to evaluate the reactions that occur in the unsaturated zone during such a remediation effort. Chemical analyses were completed on water samples collected from alluvial sediments contaminated with diesel fuel and gasoline at the Gallatin Farmers Cenex, Belgrade, Montana. The samples were collected from 7 suction lysimeters for 3 months after fertilization, but before vapor extraction, and then for 6 months following the start of vapor extraction. The geochemical reaction progress code SOLMINEQ.88 is used to calculate the aqueous equilibria in the samples and to simulate possible reaction pathways. Reduction in TPH and BTEX concentrations indicated that biodegradation of the petroleum began after fertilization, prior to vapor extraction, and continued after the start of vapor extraction. SO4-2, HCO3-, pH, and PCO2 show large systematic variations with both time and depth. These variations are independent of evaporation, mixing, sample extraction time, and soil moisture content and thus appear to be a direct consequence of bioremediation and vapor extraction. PCO2 is found to be a measure of the effectiveness of vapor extraction. The chemical mass transfer calculations also show that if vapor extraction occurs alone removing CO2 from solution without coupling of a process to buffer the solution pH, large amounts of carbonate minerals could precipitate, significantly reducing sediment permeability. These data suggest that analyses of inorganic compounds in lysimeter samples can be used to evaluate geochemical changes during vadose zone remediation and can be used to improve remediation design

  19. Ecotoxicology for risk assessment in arid zones: some key issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everts, J W

    1997-01-01

    In the hot arid zones of the world, ecotoxicological research is in statu nascendi. In these zones, the major sources of contamination by toxicants are: (1) plant protection and vector control in wet zones; (2) large-scale crop protection campaigns in dry and ephemeral wet zones; (3) refuse and obsolete pesticides in dry zones; and (4) mining. Economic development in many of these zones requires an adequate knowledge of certain basic principles, i.e., where extrapolating existing knowledge does not apply. The vulnerability of ecosystems to contaminants is closely related to water flow. In dry areas, species are susceptible to factors that interfere with the ecophysiological properties regulating water loss. Most hot arid areas are found at low latitudes where temperatures show striking extremes both in time and space. Living organisms are physiologically resistant and/or show adaptive behavior to these temperature extremes. Very little is known about the effects of toxicants on these key resistant and adaptive functions, although by extrapolation a few assumptions can be made. The effects of hyperthermia, for instance, can be aggravated by GSH depleting substances, and the temporary disabling effects characteristic of many pesticides may prove fatal under these circumstances. Most wet areas show a spatial concentration of both human activity and wildlife. In mesic zones, the contamination of water represents a health risk to both humans and other living organisms. The vast majority of aquatic communities are those inhabiting temporary pools and streams. Their populations are characterized by short reproductive cycles and/or long dormant stages. Toxicants affecting growth in these areas have been shown to have a deleterious effect. In a synthesis of existing knowledge the most prominent gaps are identified and priorities for further research are made. PMID:9002429

  20. Interfacial Reduction-Oxidation Mechanisms Governing Fate and Transport of Contaminants in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Principal Investigator: Baolin Deng, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO; Co-Principal Investigator: Silvia Sabine Jurisson, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO; Co-Principal Investigator: Edward C. Thornton, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Richland, WA; Co-Principal Investigator: Jeff Terry, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, IL

    2008-05-12

    There are many soil contamination sites at the Department of Energy (DOE) installations that contain radionuclides and toxic metals such as uranium (U), technetium (Tc), and chromium (Cr). Since these contaminants are the main 'risk drivers' at the Hanford site (WA) and some of them also pose significant risk at other DOE facilities (e.g., Oak Ridge Reservation - TN; Rocky Flats - CO), development of technologies for cost effective site remediation is needed. Current assessment indicates that complete removal of these contaminants for ex-situ disposal is infeasible, thus in-situ stabilization through reduction to insoluble species is considered one of the most important approaches for site remediation. In Situ Gaseous Reduction (ISGR) is a technology developed by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for vadose zone soil remediation. The ISGR approach uses hydrogen sulfide (H{sub 2}S) for reductive immobilization of contaminants that show substantially lower mobility in their reduced forms (e.g., Tc, U, and Cr). The technology can be applied in two ways: (i) to immobilize or stabilize pre-existing contaminants in the vadose zone soils by direct H{sub 2}S treatment, or (ii) to create a permeable reactive barrier (PRB) that prevents the migration of contaminants. Direct treatment involves reduction of the contaminants by H{sub 2}S to less mobile species. Formation of a PRB is accomplished through reduction of ferric iron species in the vadose zone soils by H{sub 2}S to iron sulfides (e.g., FeS), which provides a means for capturing the contaminants entering the treated zone. Potential future releases may occur during tank closure activities. Thus, the placement of a permeable reactive barrier by ISGR treatment can be part of the leak mitigation program. Deployment of these ISGR approaches, however, requires a better understanding of the immobilization kinetics and mechanisms, and a better assessment of the long-term effectiveness of treatment. The

  1. Monitoring water storage variations in the vadose zone with gravimeters - quantifying the influence of observatory buildings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reich, Marvin; Güntner, Andreas; Mikolaj, Michal; Blume, Theresa

    2016-04-01

    Time-lapse ground-based measurements of gravity have been shown to be sensitive to water storage variations in the surroundings of the gravimeter. They thus have the potential to serve as an integrative observation of storage changes in the vadose zone. However, in almost all cases of continuous gravity measurements, the gravimeter is located within a building which seals the soil beneath it from natural hydrological processes like infiltration and evapotranspiration. As water storage changes in close vicinity of the gravimeter have the strongest influence on the measured signal, it is important to understand the hydrology in the unsaturated soil zone just beneath the impervious building. For this reason, TDR soil moisture sensors were installed in several vertical profiles up to a depth of 2 m underneath the planned new gravimeter building at the Geodetic Observatory Wettzell (southeast Germany). In this study, we assess the influence of the observatory building on infiltration and subsurface flow patterns and thus the damping effect on gravimeter data in a two-way approach. Firstly, soil moisture time series of sensors outside of the building area are correlated with corresponding sensors of the same depth beneath the building. The resulting correlation coefficients, time lags and signal to noise relationships are used to find out how and where infiltrating water moves laterally beneath the building and towards its centre. Secondly, a physically based hydrological model (HYDRUS) with high discretization in space and time is set up for the 20 by 20 m area around and beneath the gravimeter building. The simulated spatial distribution of soil moisture in combination with the observed point data help to identify where and to what extent water storage changes and thus mass transport occurs beneath the building and how much this differs to the dynamics of the surroundings. This allows to define the umbrella space, i.e., the volume of the vadose zone where no mass

  2. Analysis of Contaminant Transport through the Vadose and Saturated Zones for Source Screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedekar, V.; Neville, C. J.; Tonkin, M. J.

    2010-12-01

    At complex sites there may be many potential source areas. Screening level analyses are useful to identify which of the source areas should be the focus of detailed investigation and analysis. A screening tool has been developed to evaluate the threat posed by waste sites on groundwater quality. This tool implements analytical solutions to simulate contaminant transport through the vadose and saturated zones and predict time-varying concentrations at potential groundwater receptors. The screening tool is developed within a user friendly, Microsoft ExcelTM based interface; however, care has been taken to implement rigorous solutions. The screening tool considers the following mechanisms: (a) Partitioning of soil contamination in to an equivalent dissolved concentration. For a time-invariant source, the solution is generalized from [3] for sorption and decay. For a time-varying source, the solution represents a special, degenerate, case of a solution implemented in ATRANS [2]; (b) One-dimensional (1D) transport of the dissolved contamination through the vadose zone considering 1D dispersion, equilibrium sorption, and first order transformation reactions. Steady state infiltration and moisture content are assumed; (c) Blending (mixing) of ambient water quality in the saturated zone with the contaminated water leaching from the vadose zone; and (d) Three-dimensional (3D) transport through the saturated zone using the formulation provided in [2], considering advection, dispersion, sorption, and first-order transformation reactions. The solution is derived using integral transform methods, following approaches adopted in [1] and [4]. Independent verification showed that the analytical techniques implemented in this study generate solutions that closely approximate those obtained using sophisticated numerical approaches, with a systematic over-estimate of the likely impact to groundwater that (predictably) stems from the use of a 1D approximation in the vadose zone. As a

  3. Vadose-zone moisture dynamics under radiation boundary conditions during a drying process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    韩江波; 周志芳; 傅志敏; 王锦国

    2014-01-01

    In order to better understand the soil moisture dynamics during a drying process, a soil column experiment is conducted in the laboratory, followed by the numerical modeling with consideration of the coupled liquid water, water vapor and heat transport in the vadose zone. Results show that there are three distinct subzones above the water table according to the temporally dynamic variation of the water content profiles. Zone 1 sees a decrease in the water contents in the upper profiles (0 m-0.05 m) due to a negative net water flux in this zone where the upward isothermal water vapor flux becomes the main flow mechanism in the soils. In contrast, the water content within Zone 2 in the depth ranging from 0.05 m to 0.37 m sees an apparent increase over time, resulting from the positive net thermal water-vapor and isothermal liquid-water fluxes into this layer. Zone 3 (0.37 m-0.65 m) also sees an apparent decrease in the water content since the isothermal liquid water flux carries the liquid water either upward out of this region for vaporization or downward to the water table as a recharge to the groundwater.

  4. Numerical Investigations of Vadose Zone Transport of Saturated Sodium Thiosulfate Solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, M. D.; Ward, A. L.

    2001-12-01

    Compared with water, hypersaline liquid wastes ([NaNO3] > 10 N) from the reduction-oxidation (REDOX) process at the Hanford site have elevated viscosity (μ > 1.2 cP), density (ρ > 1.4 gm/cm3), and surface tension (σ > 100 dyn/cm). Such liquids have infiltrated into the vadose zone at Hanford from leaking underground storage tanks. The migration behavior of saturated or hypersaline salt solutions through unsaturated soils is largely unknown. Laboratory tests with tank-waste simulants suggest that the elevated density, viscosity, and surface tension properties of these liquids can influence the wetting front behavior, altering its shape and migration rate. Conditions under which these mechanisms are active in the field and the extent to which they contribute to transport through the vadose zone are largely unknown, making it impossible to accurately predict the post-leak distribution of these fluids in the field. To investigate the effects of fluid properties on subsurface migration of hypersaline saline solutions, numerical simulations were conducted of a field-scale, tank-leak experiment. The field experiments consisted of five 4000-L injections, at a depth of 5 m, of saturated sodium thiosulfate brine (used as a surrogate for REDOX type wastes) over a 5-week period, followed by three 4000-L injections of Columbia River water. Pre-test modeling of river water injections at this Hanford field site predicted significant lateral spreading of the moisture plume and were confirmed by geophysical logging. A series of three-dimensional, multifluid (i.e., aqueous and gas phases) numerical simulations were conducted that systematically considered the effects of elevated density, viscosity, and surface tension, and reduced vapor pressure on vadose-zone transport. Hydrologic properties were determined from cores collected at the field site and calibrated using river-water injection experiments. Isothermal conditions were assumed for the simulations, however, the effects of

  5. Tier II Analysis of Vadose Zone Sediments from UPRS 200-E-81 and 200-E-86

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Valenta, Michelle M.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Brown, Christopher F.

    2009-04-01

    The overall goals of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by Washington River Protection Solutions, are to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities; identify and evaluate the efficacy of interim measures; and aid, via collection of geochemical information and data, the future decisions that must be made by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) regarding the near-term operations, future waste retrieval, and final closure activities for the single-shell tank waste management areas (WMAs). To meet the investigative goals of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, the Environmental Sciences Laboratory performed geochemical analyses on vadose zone sediments collected within Waste Management Area C. Tier one analyses of UPR-200-E-86, which includes direct push probe holes C5952, C5958 and C5960, were performed between 3/25/08 and 4/14/08. Preliminary results were presented to CH2M Hill Hanford Group on 6/5/08. As a result of the tier one investigations, further tier two analyses were requested. Tier two investigations include particle size and mineralogy analyses on samples collected between 80 to 120 feet below ground surface that were found to contain high concentrations of chloride and sulfate. Tier one analyses on sediments retrieved near UPR-200-E-81, direct push probe hole C6394, were performed between 6/20/08 and 7/22/08. Preliminary results of the tier one analyses were presented on 8/15/08. As a result of the tier one investigations, further tier two analyses were requested. Tier two analyses include determining whether U-236 exists in samples at approximately 42 feet below the ground surface. Confirmation of U-236 will determine whether the U-238 seen in the leaches performed on samples at that depth is a result of contamination and not from leaching natural uranium. Using the water and acid extract U-238 concentrations from the tier one analysis, equilibrium Kd values were requested to be calculated. Additional tier two analysis includes

  6. Conceptual Model of Uranium in the Vadose Zone for Acidic and Alkaline Wastes Discharged at the Hanford Site Central Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Szecsody, James E.; Qafoku, Nikolla; Serne, R. Jeffrey

    2014-09-01

    Historically, uranium was disposed in waste solutions of varying waste chemistry at the Hanford Site Central Plateau. The character of how uranium was distributed in the vadose zone during disposal, how it has continued to migrate through the vadose zone, and the magnitude of potential impacts on groundwater are strongly influenced by geochemical reactions in the vadose zone. These geochemical reactions can be significantly influenced by the disposed-waste chemistry near the disposal location. This report provides conceptual models and supporting information to describe uranium fate and transport in the vadose zone for both acidic and alkaline wastes discharged at a substantial number of waste sites in the Hanford Site Central Plateau. The conceptual models include consideration of how co-disposed acidic or alkaline fluids influence uranium mobility in terms of induced dissolution/precipitation reactions and changes in uranium sorption with a focus on the conditions near the disposal site. This information, when combined with the extensive information describing uranium fate and transport at near background pH conditions, enables focused characterization to support effective fate and transport estimates for uranium in the subsurface.

  7. Coupled effects of solution chemistry and hydrodynamics on the mobility and transport of quantum dot nanomaterials in the Vadose Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    To investigate the coupled effects of solution chemistry and vadose zone processes on the mobility of quantum dot (QD) nanoparticles, laboratory scale transport experiments were performed. The complex coupled effects of ionic strength, size of QD aggregates, surface tension, contact angle, infiltrat...

  8. Review of several problems on the study of eco-hydrological processes in arid zones

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Ecosystem degradation is a common and cardinal environmental problem in arid zones. The change in the eco-hydrological processes is the basic cause responsible for such a problem. The study on the eco-hydrological processes in arid zones has become a forefront and focus of the eco-environmental research. Recent studies on eco-hydrological processes in arid zones show that the primary vegetation pattern and its eco-hydrological effect are of the most stable state of the ecosystem in arid zones. Special water absorption ways of plants in arid zones and the hydraulic lift and reverse hydraulic lift functions of some plants are the key mechanisms to maintain the stability of the ecosystem in arid zones. In the case of water shortage, ensuring ecological water requirement and maintaining proper ecological ground- water table are the prerequisite to keep healthful operation of the ecosystem in arid zones. The paper reviews some advances in the study of eco-hydrological processes in arid zones. It puts forward the concepts of critical ecological water requirement, optimal ecological water requirement and saturated ecological water requirement, and discusses their determination methods. It also emphasizes that the studies on natural vegetation pattern and eco-hydrological effect, on plants with hydraulic lift function, on water sources for plant absorption, on ecological water requirement and ecological groundwater table for different plant species should be strengthened to determine the species composition and pattern suitable for the restoration and reestablishment of vegetation in different arid zones in China.

  9. Innovative vadose zone monitoring at a landfill using the neutron probe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Much of the response to groundwater contamination from landfills has been a reaction to unforseen problems. As new landfills are being designed and constructed, professionals have an opportunity to proact, by planning for pre- and post-closure monitoring at the design stages of new facility construction. Neutron logs are a proven technique for monitoring liquid movement in the vadose zone. Installation of horizontal neutron probe access tubes beneath landfill liners during construction has the advantage of efficient coverage under areas most likely to pond leachate and generate leaks, such as sumps and leachate collection and retrieval systems (LCRS). Long horizontal access tubes (hundreds of meters) are amenable to automated operation resulting in low cost per sampling event. At new facilities in California access tubes are installed in the subgrade beneath the LCRS. Preliminary logs are presented which indicate high spatial variability in soil moisture beneath these sites and the possible complication of condensation puddles

  10. Effects of Lime and Concrete Waste on Vadose Zone Carbon Cycling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thaysen, Eike Marie; Jessen, Søren; Postma, D.;

    2014-01-01

    In this work we investigate how lime and crushed concrete waste (CCW) affect carbon cycling in the vadose zone and explore whether these amendments could be employed to mitigate climate change by increasing the transport of CO2 from the atmosphere to the groundwater. We use a combination...... of experimental and modeling tools to determine ongoing biogeochemical processes. Our results demonstrate that lime and CCW amendments to acid soil contribute to the climate forcing by largely increasing the soil CO2 efflux to the atmosphere. In a series of mesocosm experiments, with barley (Hordeum vulgare L...... and lime treatments increased the dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) percolation flux by about 150 and 100%, respectively,compared to the controls. However, concurrent increases in the CO2 efflux to the atmosphere (ER) were more than one order of magnitude higher than increases in the DIC percolation flux...

  11. Inorganic carbon fluxes across the vadose zone of planted and unplanted soil mesocosms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thaysen, Eike Marie; Jacques, D.; Jessen, S.;

    2014-01-01

    The efflux of carbon dioxide (CO2) from soils influences atmospheric CO2 concentrations and thereby climate change. The partitioning of inorganic carbon (C) fluxes in the vadose zone between emission to the atmosphere and to the groundwater was investigated to reveal controlling underlying...... mechanisms. Carbon dioxide partial pressure in the soil gas (pCO(2)), alkalinity, soil moisture and temperature were measured over depth and time in unplanted and planted (barley) mesocosms. The dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) percolation flux was calculated from the pCO(2), alkalinity and the water flux at...... the mesocosm bottom. Carbon dioxide exchange between the soil surface and the atmosphere was measured at regular intervals. The soil diffusivity was determined from soil radon-222 (222Rn) emanation rates and soil air Rn concentration profiles and was used in conjunction with measured pCO(2) gradients...

  12. Immobilization of Radionuclides in the Hanford Vadose Zone by Incorporation in Solid Phases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gordon E. Brown, Jr.; Jeffrey G. Catalano; Jeffrey A. Warner; Samual Shaw; Daniel Grolimund

    2005-01-24

    The Department of Energy's Hanford Nuclear Site located in Washington State has accumulated over 2 million curies of radioactive waste from activities related to the production of plutonium (Ahearne, 1997). Sixty-seven of the single-shelled tanks located at the site are thought to have leaked, allowing between 2 and 4 million liters of waste fluids into the underlying vadose zone. The chemical processes employed at the Hanford Site to extract plutonium, as well as the need to minimize corrosion of the high-carbon steel storage tanks, resulted in uncharacterized hyperalkaline waste streams rich in radionuclides as well as other species including significant amounts of sodium and aluminum.

  13. Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test for the Hanford Central Plateau: Interim Post-Desiccation Monitoring Results

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Oostrom, Martinus; Strickland, Christopher E.; Johnson, Timothy C.; Johnson, Christian D.; Clayton, Ray E.; Chronister, Glen B.

    2013-09-01

    A field test of desiccation is being conducted as an element of the deep vadose zone treatability test program. Desiccation technology relies on removal of water from a portion of the subsurface such that the resultant low moisture conditions inhibit downward movement of water and dissolved contaminants. Previously, a field test report (Truex et al. 2012a) was prepared describing the active desiccation portion of the test and initial post-desiccation monitoring data. Additional monitoring data have been collected at the field test site during the post-desiccation period and is reported herein along with interpretation with respect to desiccation performance. This is an interim report including about 2 years of post-desiccation monitoring data.

  14. Vadose Zone Monitoring of Dairy Green Water Lagoons using Soil Solution Samplers.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brainard, James R.; Coplen, Amy K

    2005-11-01

    Over the last decade, dairy farms in New Mexico have become an important component to the economy of many rural ranching and farming communities. Dairy operations are water intensive and use groundwater that otherwise would be used for irrigation purposes. Most dairies reuse their process/green water three times and utilize lined lagoons for temporary storage of green water. Leakage of water from lagoons can pose a risk to groundwater quality. Groundwater resource protection infrastructures at dairies are regulated by the New Mexico Environment Department which currently relies on monitoring wells installed in the saturated zone for detecting leakage of waste water lagoon liners. Here we present a proposal to monitor the unsaturated zone beneath the lagoons with soil water solution samplers to provide early detection of leaking liners. Early detection of leaking liners along with rapid repair can minimize contamination of aquifers and reduce dairy liability for aquifer remediation. Additionally, acceptance of vadose zone monitoring as a NMED requirement over saturated zone monitoring would very likely significantly reduce dairy startup and expansion costs. Acknowledgment Funding for this project was provided by the Sandia National Laboratories Small Business Assistance Program

  15. Notice of construction (NOC) for tank waste remediation system vadose zone characterization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The following description and any attachments and references are provided to the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH), Division of Radiation Protection, Air Emissions and Defense Waste Section as a notice of constriction (NOC) in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-247, Radiation Protection - Air Emissions. The WAC 246-247-060, ''Applications, registration, and licensing'', states ''This section describes the information requirements for approval to construct, modify, and operate an emission unit. Any NOC requires the submittal of information listed in Appendix A.'' Appendix A (WAC 246-247-1 10) lists the requirements that must be addressed. Additionally, the following description, attachments and references are provided to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an NOC, in accordance with Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 61, ''National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.'' The information required for submittal to the EPA is specified in 40 CFR 61.07. The potential emissions from this activity are estimated to provide less than 0.1 millirem/year total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) to the hypothetical offsite maximally exposed individual (MEI), and commencement is needed within a short time frame. Therefore, this application is also intended to provide notification of the anticipated date of initial startup in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(1), and it is requested that approval of this application will also constitute EPA acceptance of this initial start-up notification. Written notification of the actual date of initial startup, in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(2) will be provided at a later date. This NOC covers the activities associated with vadose zone characterization within the Single-Shell Tank Farms located in the 200-East and 200-West Areas of the Hanford Site. Vadose zone characterization activities include the drilling and

  16. T-TY Tank Farm Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration—Vadose Zone Monitoring Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Z. F.; Strickland, Christopher E.; Field, Jim G.; Parker, Danny L.

    2010-09-27

    The Hanford Site has 149 underground single-shell tanks that store hazardous radioactive waste. Many of these tanks and their associated infrastructure (e.g., pipelines, diversion boxes) have leaked. Some of the leaked waste has entered the groundwater. The largest known leak occurred from the T-106 Tank of the 241-T Tank Farm in 1973. Five tanks are assumed to have leaked in the TY Farm. Many of the contaminants from those leaks still reside within the vadose zone within the T and TY Tank Farms. The Department of Energy’s Office of River Protection seeks to minimize the movement of these contaminant plumes by placing interim barriers on the ground surface. Such barriers are expected to prevent infiltrating water from reaching the plumes and moving them further. The soil water regime is monitored to determine the effectiveness of the interim surface barriers. Soil-water content and water pressure are monitored using off-the-shelf equipment that can be installed by the hydraulic hammer technique. Four instrument nests were installed in the T Farm in fiscal year (FY) 2006 and FY2007; two nests were installed in the TY Farm in FY2010. Each instrument nest contains a neutron probe access tube, a capacitance probe, and four heat-dissipation units. A meteorological station has been installed at the north side of the fence of the T Farm. This document summarizes the monitoring methods, the instrument calibration and installation, and the vadose zone monitoring plan for interim barriers in T farm and TY Farm.

  17. Real-time monitoring of nitrate transport in the deep vadose zone under a crop field - implications for groundwater protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkeltaub, Tuvia; Kurtzman, Daniel; Dahan, Ofer

    2016-08-01

    Nitrate is considered the most common non-point pollutant in groundwater. It is often attributed to agricultural management, when excess application of nitrogen fertilizer leaches below the root zone and is eventually transported as nitrate through the unsaturated zone to the water table. A lag time of years to decades between processes occurring in the root zone and their final imprint on groundwater quality prevents proper decision-making on land use and groundwater-resource management. This study implemented the vadose-zone monitoring system (VMS) under a commercial crop field. Data obtained by the VMS for 6 years allowed, for the first time known to us, a unique detailed tracking of water percolation and nitrate migration from the surface through the entire vadose zone to the water table at 18.5 m depth. A nitrate concentration time series, which varied with time and depth, revealed - in real time - a major pulse of nitrate mass propagating down through the vadose zone from the root zone toward the water table. Analysis of stable nitrate isotopes indicated that manure is the prevalent source of nitrate in the deep vadose zone and that nitrogen transformation processes have little effect on nitrate isotopic signature. The total nitrogen mass calculations emphasized the nitrate mass migration towards the water table. Furthermore, the simulated pore-water velocity through analytical solution of the convection-dispersion equation shows that nitrate migration time from land surface to groundwater is relatively rapid, approximately 5.9 years. Ultimately, agricultural land uses, which are constrained to high nitrogen application rates and coarse soil texture, are prone to inducing substantial nitrate leaching.

  18. Characterization Activities to Determine the Extent of DNAPL in the Vadose Zone at the A-014 Outfall of A/M Area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The purpose of this investigation was to perform characterization activities necessary to confirm the presence and extent of DNAPL in the shallow vadose zone near the headwaters of the A-014 Outfall. Following the characterization, additional soil vapor extraction wells and vadose monitoring probes were installed to promote and monitor remediation activities in regions of identified DNAPL

  19. Geochemical Characterization of Chromate Contamination in the 100 Area Vadose Zone at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dresel, P. Evan; Qafoku, Nikolla; McKinley, James P.; Fruchter, Jonathan S.; Ainsworth, Calvin C.; Liu, Chongxuan; Ilton, Eugene S.; Phillips, J. L.

    2008-07-16

    The major objectives of the proposed study were to: 1.) determine the leaching characteristics of hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] from contaminated sediments collected from 100 Area spill sites; 2.) elucidate possible Cr(VI) mineral and/or chemical associations that may be responsible for Cr(VI) retention in the Hanford Site 100 Areas through the use of i.) macroscopic leaching studies and ii.) microscale characterization of contaminated sediments; and 3.) provide information to construct a conceptual model of Cr(VI) geochemistry in the Hanford 100 Area vadose zone. In addressing these objectives, additional benefits accrued were: (1) a fuller understanding of Cr(VI) entrained in the vadose zone that will that can be utilized in modeling potential Cr(VI) source terms, and (2) accelerating the Columbia River 100 Area corridor cleanup by providing valuable information to develop remedial action based on a fundamental understanding of Cr(VI) vadose zone geochemistry. A series of macroscopic column experiments were conducted with contaminated and uncontaminated sediments to study Cr(VI) desorption patterns in aged and freshly contaminated sediments, evaluate the transport characteristics of dichromate liquid retrieved from old pipelines of the 100 Area; and estimate the effect of strongly reducing liquid on the reduction and transport of Cr(VI). Column experiments used the < 2 mm fraction of the sediment samples and simulated Hanford groundwater solution. Periodic stop-flow events were applied to evaluate the change in elemental concentration during time periods of no flow and greater fluid residence time. The results were fit using a two-site, one dimensional reactive transport model. Sediments were characterized for the spatial and mineralogical associations of the contamination using an array of microscale techniques such as XRD, SEM, EDS, XPS, XMP, and XANES. The following are important conclusions and implications. Results from column experiments indicated that most

  20. A modular subsurface borehole-tower for deep vadose zone monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breitenstein, Daniel; Or, Dani

    2016-04-01

    Some of the most urgent contemporary societal challenges ranging from climate change to ecosystem services and food security are strongly linked to processes taking place in the vadose zone. The growing interest in this critical zone prompted a massive deployment of eco-hydrological networks (TERENO, CZO, and more) focusing on long term and highly resolved monitoring of key variables such as soil moisture, pressure, temperature, gas fluxes and more. A challenge in all these endeavors remains the reliable and consistent acquisition of variables to depths of eco-hydrological interest (a few meters in some cases), especially soil moisture. In the absence of off-the-shelf sensor systems capable of vertically resolved acquisition of these variables, we developed a prototype of a modular borehole-based tower for simultaneous monitoring of water content, temperature, oxygen and CO2 gas concentrations, and potentially other variables (relative humidity, capillary pressure). The modular tower is made up of 1.5 m sections of 75 mm PVC tubing with TDR waveguides mounted on outer walls. Each paired waveguides (0.15 m in length) were installed on two opposing sides of inflatable sections along the modular unit to ensure contact with the borehole walls. Oxygen and CO2 are measured using solid-state and optical gas sensors that could be periodically calibrated for potential drift. A prototype that could be extended to 6 m depth and preliminary calibration results will be presented (as a potential design for future CZO's). We welcome suggestions for expansion and improvements.

  1. Field evidence for strong chemical separation of contaminants inthe Hanford Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Conrad, Mark E.; DePaolo, Donald J.; Maher, Katharine; Gee,Glendon W.; Ward, Anderson L.

    2007-04-10

    Water and chemical transport from a point source withinvadose zone sediments at Hanford were examined with a leak testconsisting of five 3800-liter aliquots of water released at 4.5 m depthevery week over a 4-week period. The third aliquot contained bromide, D2Oand 87Sr. Movement of the tracers was monitored for 9 months by measuringpore water compositions of samples from boreholes drilled 2-8 m from theinjection point. Graded sedimentary layers acting as natural capillarybarriers caused significant lateral spreading of the leak water. D2Oconcentrations>50 percent of the concentration in the tracer aliquotwere detected at 9-11 m depth. However, increased water contents, lowerd18O values, and geophysical monitoring of moisture changes at otherdepths signified high concentrations of leak fluids were added where D2Oconcentrations were<3 percent above background, suggesting limitedmixing between different aliquots of the leak fluids. Initially highbromide concentrations decreased more rapidly over time than D2O,suggesting enhanced transport of bromide due to anion exclusion. Nosignificant increase in 87Sr was detected in the sampled pore water,indicating strong retardation of Sr by the sediments. These resultshighlight some of the processes strongly affecting chemical transport inthe vadose zone and demonstrate the significant separation of contaminantplumes that can occur.

  2. T-TY Tank Farm Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration - Vadose Zone Monitoring FY10 Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Z. F. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Strickland, Christopher E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Field, Jim G. [Washington River Protection Solutions, Inc., Richland, WA (United States); Parker, Danny L. [Washington River Protection Solutions, Inc., Richland, WA (United States)

    2011-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of River Protection has constructed interim surface barriers over a portion of the T and TY tank farms as part of the Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration Project. The interim surface barriers (hereafter referred to as the surface barriers or barriers) are designed to minimize the infiltration of precipitation into the soil zones containing radioactive contaminants and minimize the movement of the contaminants. As part of the demonstration effort, vadose zone moisture is being monitored to assess the effectiveness of the barriers at reducing soil moisture. Solar-powered systems were installed to continuously monitor soil water conditions at four locations in the T (i.e., instrument Nests TA, TB, TC, and TD) and the TY (i.e., instrument Nests TYA and TYB) Farms beneath the barriers and outside the barrier footprint as well as site meteorological conditions. Nests TA and TYA are placed in the area outside the barrier footprint and serve as controls, providing subsurface conditions outside the influence of the surface barriers. Nest TB provides subsurface measurements to assess surface-barrier edge effects. Nests TC, TD, and TYB are used to assess changes in soil-moisture conditions beneath the interim surface barriers.

  3. IMMOBILIZATION OF RADIONUCLIDES IN THE HANFORD VADOSE ZONE BY INCORPORATION IN SOLID PHASES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Traina, Samuel J.; Grandinetti, Philip; Brown Jr., Gordon E. Ainsworth, Calvin C.; Szecsody, Jim E.

    2001-06-01

    Specific objectives are to investigate (1) the effect of aging on the stability of sorption complexes on Al-oxide and Al-oxyhydroxide surfaces formed from neutralization and homogeneous nucleation of alkaline aluminate solutions; (2) the sorption/coprecipitation of these elements in solids formed from reaction of alkaline aluminate solutions with simple systems of representative minerals and mineral coatings found in the soils and sediments underlying the Hanford Tank Farm (e.g., quartz, feldspars, biotite, muscovite, chlorite,clay mineral, augite, hornblende, ilmenite, magnetite, hematite, Fe(III)- oxyhydroxides, and Mn(IV)-(hydr)oxides); and (3) the sorption/coprecipitation of these elements in solids formed from reaction of alkaline aluminate solutions with soil and sediment samples obtained from the Hanford site. (4) To couple these laboratory studies to precipitation processes occurring in the Hanford vadose zone beneath the Tank Farm, we also propose to characterize the particle coatings and precipitate phases in core samples from this zone. These investigations will utilize X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (XAFS) spectroscopy, vibrational spectroscopy, NMR spectroscopy, electron and X-ray microprobe analyses, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and other characterization studies of the speciation and spatial distribution of the these ions in several model systems chosen to simulate the natural systems.

  4. Experimental and modeling of the unsaturated transports of S-metolachlor and its metabolites in glaciofluvial vadose zone solids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidoli, Pauline; Lassabatere, Laurent; Angulo-Jaramillo, Rafael; Baran, Nicole

    2016-07-01

    The transport of pesticides to groundwater is assumed to be impacted by flow processes and geochemical interactions occurring in the vadose zone. In this study, the transport of S-metolachlor (SMOC) and its two metabolites ESA-metolachlor (MESA) and OXA-metolachlor (MOXA) in vadose zone materials of a glaciofluvial aquifer is studied at laboratory scale. Column experiments are used to study the leaching of a conservative tracer (bromide) and SMOC, MESA and MOXA under unsaturated conditions in two lithofacies, a bimodal gravel (Gcm,b) and a sand (S-x). Tracer experiments showed water fractionation into mobile and immobile compartments more pronounced in bimodal gravel columns. In both lithofacies columns, SMOC outflow is delayed (retardation factor > 2) and mass balance reveals depletion (mass balance of 0.59 and 0.77 in bimodal gravel and sand, respectively). However, complete mass elution associated with retardation factors close to unity shows that there is no adsorption of MESA and MOXA in either lithofacies. SMOC transport is characterized by non-equilibrium sorption and sink term in both bimodal gravel and sand columns. Batch experiments carried out using agitation times consistent with column water residence times confirmed a time-dependence of SMOC sorption and high adsorption rates (> 80%) of applied concentrations. Desorption experiments confirm the irreversibility of a major part of the SMOC adsorption onto particles, corresponding to the sink term in columns. In the bimodal gravel column, SMOC adsorption occurs mainly on reactive particles in contact with mobile water because of flow regionalization whereas in the sand column, there is pesticide diffusion to the immobile water. Such results clearly show that sorption mechanisms in the vadose zone solids below the soil are both solute and contact-time-dependent and are impacted by hydrodynamic conditions. The more rapid transport of MESA and MOXA to the aquifer would be controlled mainly by water flow

  5. Integrated Field, Laboratory, and Modeling Studies to Determine the Effects of Linked Microbial and Physical Spatial Heterogeneity on Engineered Vadose Zone Bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fred Brokman; John Selker; Mark Rockhold

    2004-01-26

    While numerous techniques exist for remediation of contaminant plumes in groundwater or near the soil surface, remediation methods in the deep vadose zone are less established due to complex transport dynamics and sparse microbial populations. There is a lack of knowledge on how physical and hydrologic features of the vadose zone control microbial growth and colonization in response to nutrient delivery during bioremediation. Yet pollution in the vadose zone poses a serious threat to the groundwater resources lying deeper in the sediment. While the contaminants may be slowly degraded by native microbial communities, microbial degradation rates rarely keep pace with the spread of the pollutant. It is crucial to increase indigenous microbial degradation in the vadose zone to combat groundwater contamination.

  6. Integrated Field, Laboratory, and Modeling Studies to Determine the Effects of Linked Microbial and Physical Spatial Heterogeneity on Engineered Vadose Zone Bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brockman, Fred J.; Selker, John S.; Rockhold, Mark L.

    2004-10-31

    Executive Summary - While numerous techniques exist for remediation of contaminant plumes in groundwater or near the soil surface, remediation methods in the deep vadose zone are less established due to complex transport dynamics and sparse microbial populations. There is a lack of knowledge on how physical and hydrologic features of the vadose zone control microbial growth and colonization in response to nutrient delivery during bioremediation. Yet pollution in the vadose zone poses a serious threat to the groundwater resources lying deeper in the sediment. While the contaminants may be slowly degraded by native microbial communities, microbial degradation rates rarely keep pace with the spread of the pollutant. It is crucial to increase indigenous microbial degradation in the vadose zone to combat groundwater contamination...

  7. Notice of Construction for Tank Waste Remediation System Vadose Zone Characterization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    HILL, J.S.

    2000-04-20

    The following description and any attachments and references are provided to the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH), Division of Radiation Protection, Air Emissions and Defense Waste Section as a notice of construction (NOC) in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-247, Radiation Protection-Air Emissions. The WAC 246-247-060, ''Applications, registration, and licensing'', states ''This section describes the information requirements for approval to construct, modify, and operate an emission unit. Any NOC requires the submittal of information listed in Appendix A.'' Appendix A (WAC 246-247-1 10) lists the requirements that must be addressed. The original NOC was submitted in May of 1999 as DOm-99-34. Additionally, the following description, attachments and references are provided to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an NOC, in accordance with Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 61, ''National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.'' The information required for submittal to the EPA is specified in 40 CFR 61.07. The potential emissions from this activity are estimated to provide less than 0.1 milliredyear total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) to the hypothetical offsite maximally exposed individual (MEI), and commencement is needed within a short time frame. Therefore, this application is also intended to provide notification of the anticipated date of initial start-up in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(1), and it is requested that approval of this application will also constitute EPA acceptance of this initial start-up notification. Written notification of the actual date of initial startup, in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(2) will be provided at a later date. This NOC covers the activities associated with vadose zone characterization within the Single-Shell Tank Farms located in the 200

  8. Notice of Construction for Tank Waste Remediation System Vadose Zone Characterization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The following description and any attachments and references are provided to the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH), Division of Radiation Protection, Air Emissions and Defense Waste Section as a notice of construction (NOC) in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-247, Radiation Protection--Air Emissions. The WAC 246-247-060, ''Applications, registration, and licensing'', states ''This section describes the information requirements for approval to construct, modify, and operate an emission unit. Any NOC requires the submittal of information listed in Appendix A,'' Appendix A (WAC 246-247-1 10) lists the requirements that must be addressed. The original NOC was submitted in May of 1999 as DOE/TU-99-34. Additionally, the following description, attachments and references are provided to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an NOC, in accordance with Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 61, ''National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.'' The information required for submittal to the EPA is specified in 40 CFR 61.07. The potential emissions from this activity are estimated to provide less than 0.1 millirem/year total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) to the hypothetical offsite maximally exposed individual (MEI), and commencement is needed within a short time frame. Therefore, this application is also intended to provide notification of the anticipated date of initial startup in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(axl), and it is requested that approval of this application will also constitute EPA acceptance of this initial start-up notification. Written notification of the actual date of initial startup, in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(2) will be provided at a later date. This NOC covers the activities associated with vadose zone characterization within the Single-Shell Tank Farms located in the 200-East and 200-West Areas of the Hanford Site. Vadose zone

  9. Notice of construction for tank waste remediation system vadose zone characterization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    HILL, J.S.

    1999-05-04

    The following description and any attachments and references are provided to the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH), Division of Radiation Protection, Air Emissions & Defense Waste Section as a notice of constriction (NOC) in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-247, Radiation Protection - Air Emissions. The WAC 246-247-060, ''Applications, registration, and licensing'', states ''This section describes the information requirements for approval to construct, modify, and operate an emission unit. Any NOC requires the submittal of information listed in Appendix A.'' Appendix A (WAC 246-247-1 10) lists the requirements that must be addressed. Additionally, the following description, attachments and references are provided to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an NOC, in accordance with Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 61, ''National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.'' The information required for submittal to the EPA is specified in 40 CFR 61.07. The potential emissions from this activity are estimated to provide less than 0.1 millirem/year total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) to the hypothetical offsite maximally exposed individual (MEI), and commencement is needed within a short time frame. Therefore, this application is also intended to provide notification of the anticipated date of initial startup in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(1), and it is requested that approval of this application will also constitute EPA acceptance of this initial start-up notification. Written notification of the actual date of initial startup, in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(2) will be provided at a later date. This NOC covers the activities associated with vadose zone characterization within the Single-Shell Tank Farms located in the 200-East and 200-West Areas of the Hanford Site. Vadose zone

  10. Notice of Construction for Tank Waste Remediation System Vadose Zone Characterization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    HILL, J.S.

    2000-03-08

    The following description and any attachments and references are provided to the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH), Division of Radiation Protection, Air Emissions & Defense Waste Section as a notice of construction (NOC) in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-247, Radiation Protection--Air Emissions. The WAC 246-247-060, ''Applications, registration, and licensing'', states ''This section describes the information requirements for approval to construct, modify, and operate an emission unit. Any NOC requires the submittal of information listed in Appendix A,'' Appendix A (WAC 246-247-1 10) lists the requirements that must be addressed. The original NOC was submitted in May of 1999 as DOE/TU-99-34. Additionally, the following description, attachments and references are provided to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an NOC, in accordance with Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 61, ''National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants.'' The information required for submittal to the EPA is specified in 40 CFR 61.07. The potential emissions from this activity are estimated to provide less than 0.1 millirem/year total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) to the hypothetical offsite maximally exposed individual (MEI), and commencement is needed within a short time frame. Therefore, this application is also intended to provide notification of the anticipated date of initial startup in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(axl), and it is requested that approval of this application will also constitute EPA acceptance of this initial start-up notification. Written notification of the actual date of initial startup, in accordance with the requirement listed in 40 CFR 61.09(a)(2) will be provided at a later date. This NOC covers the activities associated with vadose zone characterization within the Single-Shell Tank Farms located in the

  11. The Role of Natural Organic Matter and Mineral Colloids in the Transport of Contaminants through Heterogeneous Vadose-Zone Environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James Saiers, Yale University (PI); Joseph Ryan, University of Colorado (Co-PI)

    2009-01-31

    Our research was guided by a key objective of the Environmental Management Science Program (EMSP), which is to improve conceptual and predictive models for contaminant movement in complex vadose zone environments. In this report, increases in the understanding of colloidcontaminant interactions, colloid mobilization, and colloid deposition within unsaturated soils are cited as requisite needs for predicting contaminant fate and distribution in the vadose zone. We addressed these needs by pursuing three key goals: 1. Identify the mechanisms that govern OM and mineral-colloid reaction and transport in heterogeneous, unsaturated porous media; 2. Quantify the role of OM and mineral colloids in scavenging and facilitating the transport of contaminants of concern to DOE; and 3. Develop and test a mathematical model suitable for simulating the movement of OM- and colloid-associated contaminants through heterogeneous, unsaturated porous media.

  12. DNAPL Surface Chemistry: Its Impact on DNAPL Distribution in the Vadose Zone and its Manipulation to Enhance Remediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suan Power; Stefan Grimberg; Miles Denham

    2003-06-16

    The remediation of DNAPLs in subsurface environments is often limited by the heterogeneous distribution of the organic fluid. The fraction of DNAPL that is in the high conductivity regions of the subsurface can often be recovered relatively easily, although DNAPL in lower conductivity regions is much more difficult to extract, either through direct pumping or remediation measures based on interface mass transfer. The distribution of DNAPL within the vadose zone is affected by a complex interplay of heterogeneities in the porous matrix and the interfacial properties defining the interactions among all fluid and solid phases. Decreasing the interfacial tension between a DNAPL and water in the vadose zone could change the spreading of the DNAPL, thereby increase the surface area for mass transfer and the effectiveness of soil vapor extraction remediation.

  13. Geochemical Characterization Data Package for the Vadose Zone in the Single-Shell Tank Waste Management Areas at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cantrell, Kirk J.; Brown, Christopher F.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Krupka, Kenneth M.

    2008-01-07

    This data package discusses the geochemistry of vadose zone sediments beneath the single-shell tank (SST) farms at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Hanford Site. The purpose of the report is to provide a review of the most recent and relevant geochemical information available for the vadose zone beneath the SST farms and the Integrated Disposal Facility (IDF).

  14. Impact of wastewater irrigation on the dynamics of metal concentration in the vadose zone: simulation with NETPATH--part II.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deshmukh, Santosh K; Singh, Anil Kumar; Datta, Siba Prasad

    2015-12-01

    Understanding and quantification of geochemical processes in vadose zone of sewage-effluent-irrigated soils are helpful in predicting the transference of metals and other ions to food chain and groundwater. Hence, an attempt has been made to simulate various geochemical processes occurring in the flow path of infiltrating sewage water down the vadose zone with the help of Net Geochemical Reaction Along the Flow Path (NETPATH). This study area was located in Western Delhi, India, where sewage effluents originating from Keshopur Sewage Treatment plant have been used for irrigation since 1979. Agricultural lands receiving irrigation through sewage and tube well water were selected for this study. The results indicated that groundwater of 20- and 10-year sewage-irrigated lands was slightly oversaturated in respect of calcite and dolomite, and undersaturated in respect of gypsum. The shallow groundwater of 5-year sewage-irrigated field was undersaturated in case of calcite, dolomite, and gypsum. Among the metals, major focus was given on Fe and Mn as these two metals are redox prone and relatively more mobile than other metals under saturated conditions. There was reduction in concentration of Fe and Mn in groundwater samples of 20-year sewage-irrigated field as compared to that in sewage effluent. Such reduction in concentration of Fe and Mn could be ascribed to the formation of goethite and manganite in vadose zone, respectively, as revealed by simulation with NETPATH. Similarly, in case of 10- and 5-year sewage-irrigated fields, increase in Fe and Mn concentrations in groundwater was due to dissolution of siderite and pyrulusite, respectively. NETPATH software could explain the variation in diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid (DTPA)-extractable Fe and Mn content in vadose zone to the extent of 94 and 65%, respectively. PMID:26585958

  15. Enhanced biogeochemical cycling and subsequent reduction of hydraulic conductivity associated with soil-layer interfaces in the vadose zone

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, David J.; McGuire, Jennifer T.; Mohanty, Binayak P.

    2011-01-01

    Biogeochemical dynamics in the vadose zone are poorly understood due to the transient nature of chemical and hydrologic conditions, but are nonetheless critical to understanding chemical fate and transport. This study explored the effects of a soil layer on linked geochemical, hydrological, and microbiological processes. Three laboratory soil columns were constructed: a homogenized medium-grained sand, a homogenized organic-rich loam, and a sand-over-loam layered column. Upward and downward i...

  16. Using Vapor Phase Tomography to Measure the Spatial Distribution of Vapor Concentrations and Flux for Vadose-zone VOC Sources

    OpenAIRE

    Mainhagu, J.; Morrison, C; Brusseau, M.L.

    2015-01-01

    A test was conducted at a chlorinated-solvent contaminated site in Tucson, AZ, to evaluate the effectiveness of vapor-phase tomography (VPT) for characterizing the distribution of volatile organic contaminants (VOC) in the vadose zone. A soil vapor extraction (SVE) system has been in operation at the site since 2007. Vapor concentration and vacuum pressure were measured at four different depths in each of four monitoring wells surrounding the extraction well. The test provided a 3D characteri...

  17. Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test for the Hanford Central Plateau. Interim Post-Desiccation Monitoring Results, Fiscal Year 2015

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Strickland, Christopher E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Oostrom, Martinus [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Johnson, Christian D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Tartakovsky, Guzel D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Johnson, Timothy C. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Clayton, Ray E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Chronister, Glen B. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-09-01

    A field test of desiccation is being conducted as an element of the Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test Program. The active desiccation portion of the test has been completed. Monitoring data have been collected at the field test site during the post-desiccation period and are reported herein. This is an interim data summary report that includes about 4 years of post-desiccation monitoring data. The DOE field test plan proscribes a total of 5 years of post-desiccation monitoring.

  18. Transit times of water particles in the vadose zone across catchment states and catchments functional units

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sprenger, Matthias; Weiler, Markus

    2014-05-01

    Understanding the water movement in the vadose zone and its associated transport of solutes are of major interest to reduce nutrient leaching, pollution transport or other risks to water quality. Soil physical models are widely used to asses such transport processes, while the site specific parameterization of these models remains challenging. Inverse modeling is a common method to adjust the soil physical parameters in a way that the observed water movement or soil water dynamics are reproduced by the simulation. We have shown that the pore water stable isotope concentration can serve as an additional fitting target to simulate the solute transport and water balance in the unsaturated zone. In the presented study, the Mualem- van Genuchten parameters for the Richards equation and diffusivity parameter for the convection-dispersion equation have been parameterized using the inverse model approach with Hydrus-1D for 46 experimental sites of different land use, topography, pedology and geology in the Attert basin in Luxembourg. With the best parameter set we simulated the transport of a conservative solute that was introduced via a pulse input at different points in time. Thus, the transit times in the upper 2 m of the soil for different catchment states could be inferred for each location. It has been shown that the time a particle needs to pass the -2 m depth plane highly varies from the systems state and the systems forcing during and after infiltration of that particle. Differences in transit times among the study sites within the Attert basin were investigated with regards to its governing factors to test the concept of functional units. The study shows the potential of pore water stable isotope concentration for residence times and transport analyses in the unsaturated zone leading to a better understanding of the time variable subsurface processes across the catchment.

  19. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Borehole 41-09-39 in the S-SX Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Last, George V.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Ainsworth, Calvin C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; O' Hara, Matthew J.; Brown, Christopher F.; Orr, Robert D.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Wilson, Teresa C.; Wagnon, Kenneth B.; Williams, Bruce A.; Burke, Deborah S.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Table 5.15. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in February 2002. The overall goal of the of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediment from within the S-SX Waste Management Area. This report is one in a series of four reports to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from borehole 41-09-39 installed adjacent to tank SX-109.

  20. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Slant Borehole SX-108 in the S-SX Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Last, George V.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Ainsworth, Calvin C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; O' Hara, Matthew J.; Brown, Christopher F.; Orr, Robert D.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Wilson, Teresa C.; Wagnon, Kenneth B.; Williams, Bruce A.; Burke, Deborah S.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Table 4.17. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in February 2002. The overall goal of the of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediment from within the S-SX Waste Management Area. This report is the fourth in a series of four reports to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from a slant borehole installed beneath tank SX-108 (or simply SX-108 slant borehole).

  1. Modeling potential migration of petroleum hydrocarbons from a mixed-waste disposal site in the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Environmental monitoring of a mixed-waste disposal site at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory has confirmed release and migration into the vadose zone of: (1) chlorinated hydrocarbons in the vapor phase and (2) trace levels of certain transuranic elements. The finding has prompted an evaluation of the potential role of waste petroleum hydrocarbons in mediating or influencing contaminant migration from the disposal site. Disposal records indicate that a large volume of machine oil contaminated with transuranic isotopes was disposed at the site along with the chlorinated solvents and other radioactive wastes. A multiphase flow model was used to assess the possible extent of oil and vapor movement through the 177 m thick vadose zone. One dimensional simulations were performed to estimate the vertical distribution of the vapor phase, the aqueous phase, and immiscible free liquid as a function of time. The simulations indicate that the oil may migrate slowly through the vadose zone, to potentially significant depths. Calculated transport rates support the following ranking with regard to relative mobility: vapor phase > aqueous phase > free liquid. 21 refs., 7 figs., 2 tabs

  2. Influences of Flow Transients and Porous Medium Heterogeneity on Colloid-Associated Contaminant Transport in the Vadose Zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radionuclides, metals, and dense non-aqueous phase liquids have contaminated about six billion cubic meters of soil at Department of Energy (DOE) sites. The subsurface transport of many of these contaminants is facilitated by colloids (i.e., microscopic, waterborne particles). The first step in the transport of contaminants from their sources to off-site surface water and groundwater is migration through the vadose zone. Developing our understanding of the migration of colloids and colloid-associated contaminants through the vadose zone is critical to assessing and controlling the release of contaminants from DOE sites. In this study, we examined the mobilization, transport, and filtration (retention) of mineral colloids and colloid-associated radionuclides within unsaturated porous media. This investigation involved laboratory column experiments designed to identify properties that affect colloid mobilization and retention and pore-scale visualization experiments designed to elucidate mechanisms that govern these colloid-mass transfer processes. The experiments on colloid mobilization and retention were supplemented with experiments on radionuclide transport through porous media and on radionuclide adsorption to mineral colloids. Observations from all of these experiments--the column and visualization experiments with colloids and the experiments with radionuclides--were used to guide the development of mathematical models appropriate for describing colloids and colloid-facilitated radionuclide transport through the vadose zone

  3. Hydrogeologic characterization of an arid zone Radioactive Waste Management Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An in-depth subsurface site characterization and monitoring program for the soil water migration pathway has been planned, implemented, and completed to satisfy data requirements for a waiver from groundwater monitoring, for an exemption from liner leachate collections systems, and for different regulatory driven performance assessments. A traditional scientific approach has been taken to focus characterization and monitoring efforts. This involved developing a conceptual model of the hydrogeologic system and defining and testing hypotheses about this model. Specific hypotheses tested included: that the system was hydrologically heterogenous and anisotropic, and that recharge was very low or negligible. Mineralogical, physical, and hydrologic data collected to test hypotheses has shown the hydrologic system to be remarkably homogenous and isotropic rather than heterogenous and anisotropic. Both hydrodynamic and environmental tracer approaches for estimating recharge have led to the conclusion that recharge from the Area 5 RWMS is not occurring in the upper region of the vadose zone, and that recharge at depth is extremely small or negligible. This demonstration of ''no migration of hazardous constituents to the water table satisfies a key requirement for both the groundwater monitoring waiver and the exemption from liner leachate collection systems. Data obtained from testing hypotheses concerning the soil water migration pathway have been used to refine the conceptual model of the hydrogeologic system of the site. These data suggest that the soil gas and atmospheric air pathways may be more important for transporting contaminants to the accessible environment than the soil water pathway. New hypotheses have been developed about these pathways, and characterization and monitoring activities designed to collect data to test these hypotheses

  4. Natural attenuation assessment of multiple VOCs in a deep vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The fate of six volatile organic compounds (VOC) in a 150-meter deep vadose zone was examined in support of a RCRA Corrective Measures Study of the Chemical Waste Landfill at Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico. The study focused on the modeling of potential future transport of the VOCs to exposure media upon the completion of two separate voluntary corrective measures--soil vapor extraction and landfill excavation--designed to significantly reduce contaminant levels in subsurface soils. modeling was performed with R-UNSAT, a finite-difference simulator that was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey. R-UNSAT facilitated a relatively unique and comprehensive assessment of vapor transport because it (1) simulated the simultaneous movement of all six VOCs, taking into account each constituent's diffusion coefficient as affected by its mole fraction within a mixture of chemicals, and (2) permitted simultaneous assessment of risk to human health via volatilization (air) and drinking water (groundwater) pathways. Modeling results suggested that monitored natural attenuation would represent a viable remedial alternative at the landfill after both voluntary corrective measures were completed

  5. T Tank Farm Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration--Vadose Zone Monitoring Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Z. F.; Keller, Jason M.; Strickland, Christopher E.

    2007-04-01

    The Hanford Site has 149 underground single-shell tanks that store hazardous radioactive waste. Many of these tanks and their associated infrastructure (e.g., pipelines, diversion boxes) have leaked. Some of the leaked waste has entered the groundwater. The largest known leak occurred from the T-106 Tank in 1973. Many of the contaminants from that leak still reside within the vadose zone beneath the T Tank Farm. CH2M Hill Hanford Group, Inc. seeks to minimize movement of this residual contaminant plume by placing an interim barrier on the surface. Such a barrier is expected to prevent infiltrating water from reaching the plume and moving it further. A plan has been prepared to monitor and determine the effectiveness of the interim surface barrier. Soil water content and water pressure will be monitored using off-the-shelf equipment that can be installed by the hydraulic hammer technique. In fiscal year 2006, two instrument nests were installed. Each instrument nest contains a neutron probe access tube, a capacitance probe, four heat-dissipation units, and a drain gauge to measure soil water flux. A meteorological station has been installed outside of the fence. In fiscal year 2007, two additional instrument nests are planned to be installed beneath the proposed barrier.

  6. Impact of Dissolved Organic Matter on Colloid Transport in the Vadose Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales, V. L.; Gao, B.; Steenhuis, T. S.

    2008-05-01

    Mobile soil colloids can facilitate contaminant transport through the soil profile through complexation of pollutants previously thought to have very limited mobility in soil. Much work has been done to define the governing transport mechanisms of colloids in unsaturated media, and have demonstrated that the release, transport, and retention of colloidal particles in soil are very sensitive to flow chemistry. However, better understanding of the physicochemical interactions between dissolved organic matter (DOM) and soil colloids is clearly needed, as the transport in manure rich soils has been observed to be much greater than originally suspected. The goal of this study is to fill this knowledge gap by elucidating the role of DOM on the transport and retention of colloidal particles in the vadose zone through multi-scale investigations. The initial phase of the experimental work consists of collecting concomitant visual (with Bright Field Microscopy and Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy) and breakthrough data from medium sized (d50 = 0.4 mm) quartz sand filled chambers of 10x2x2 cm and 1 cm diameter x 10 cm length. Pulses of synthetic and clay colloid suspensions will be individually injected into the flow chambers at various concentrations of DOM (i.e. extracted humic acid from manure). Results from these experiments indicate that DOM can increase colloid stability in water and thereby potentially facilitate the transport of contaminants adsorbed onto suspended and mobile colloids.

  7. DOE capabilities for in-situ characterization and monitoring of formation properties in the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The DOE Environmental Restoration (ER) Program faces the difficult task of characterizing the properties of the subsurface and identifying and mapping a large number of contaminants at landfills, surface disposal areas, spill sites, nuclear waste tanks, and subsurface contaminant plumes throughout the complex of DOE facilities. Geophysical borehole logs can measure formation properties such as bulk density, water content, and lithology, and can quantitatively analyze for radionuclides and such elements as chlorine and heavy metals. Since these measurements can be replaced as desired, they can be used for both initial characterization and monitoring of changes in contaminant concentration and water content (sometimes linked to contaminant migration), at a fraction of the cost of conventional sampling. The techniques develop at several DOE laboratories, and the experience that the authors have gained in making in-situ measurements in the vadose zone, are applicable to problems at many other DOE sites. Moreover, they can capitalize on existing inventories of boreholes. By building on this experience workers involved in ER projects at those sites should be able to obtain high-quality data at substantial reductions in cost and time

  8. Interfacial Reduction - Oxidation Mechanisms Governing Fate and Transport of Contaminants in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deng, Baolin

    2004-12-01

    Many soil contamination sites at Department of Energy installations contain radionuclides and toxic metals such as technetium (Tc), uranium (U) and chromium (Cr). In Situ Gaseous Reduction (ISGR) using dilute hydrogen sulfide (H2S) as reductant is a technology uniquely suitable for the vadose zone soil remediation to reduce and immobilize these contaminants. It is conceivable that the ISGR approach can be applied either to immobilize pre-existing contaminants or to create a reductive permeable reactive barrier (PRB) through hydrogen sulfide gas treatment of soils for contaminant interception. This project aims to improve our understanding of the complex interactions among the contaminants (U and Tc), H2S, and various soil constituents. The collaborative effort involving the University of Missouri-Columbia, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Illinois Institute of Technology will provide the knowledge needed to further develop and optimize the ISGR technology. Specific research tasks include: (a) examine the reduction kinetics of Tc(VII) and U(VI) by H2S; (b) measure the reduction kinetics of Tc(VII) and U(VI) by iron sulfides; (c) characterize the speciation of immobilized Tc and U and investigate the immobilization mechanisms; (d) assess the long-term stability of the contaminants immobilized by the ISGR treatment; and (e) validate the pure phase experimental results under natural soil conditions.

  9. Interfacial Reduction - Oxidation Mechanisms Governing Fate and Transport of Contaminants in the Vadose Zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Many soil contamination sites at Department of Energy installations contain radionuclides and toxic metals such as technetium (Tc), uranium (U) and chromium (Cr). In Situ Gaseous Reduction (ISGR) using dilute hydrogen sulfide (H2S) as reductant is a technology uniquely suitable for the vadose zone soil remediation to reduce and immobilize these contaminants. It is conceivable that the ISGR approach can be applied either to immobilize pre-existing contaminants or to create a reductive permeable reactive barrier (PRB) through hydrogen sulfide gas treatment of soils for contaminant interception. This project aims to improve our understanding of the complex interactions among the contaminants (U and Tc), H2S, and various soil constituents. The collaborative effort involving the University of Missouri-Columbia, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Illinois Institute of Technology will provide the knowledge needed to further develop and optimize the ISGR technology. Specific research tasks include: (a) examine the reduction kinetics of Tc(VII) and U(VI) by H2S; (b) measure the reduction kinetics of Tc(VII) and U(VI) by iron sulfides; (c) characterize the speciation of immobilized Tc and U and investigate the immobilization mechanisms; (d) assess the long-term stability of the contaminants immobilized by the ISGR treatment; and (e) validate the pure phase experimental results under natural soil conditions

  10. Quantifying Deep Vadose Zone Soil Water Potential Changes at a Waste Disposal Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Joel M. Hubbell; Deborah L. McElroy

    2007-08-01

    Recent advances in moisture monitoring using tensiometers has resulted in long-duration, high quality data sets from within the deep vadose zone. A network of about 30 advanced tensiometers in 18 wells provided field-scale data to monitor soil water potential conditions and movement in the subsurface in and around a mixed waste disposal site at depths ranging from 6 to over 67 m below land surface (bls). Sensors are located in both sediments and fractured rock within the geologic profile and some have been in operation for over 10 years. The moisture monitoring was able to detect long term declines in soil water potential in response to lower than normal precipitation and resultant infiltration over the time period from 2000 to 2004. This trend was reversed in 2005 and 2006 in more than half of the monitoring sites over the 6 to 33 m depth interval and in several monitoring sites from 33 to 67 m, in response to above normal precipitation. These tensiometer data have the potential to effectively and rapidly validate that a remedial action such as placement of an ET cover would be successful in reducing the water moisture movement inside the disposal area to levels similar to those in undisturbed sites outside of the disposal area. This paper will describe the instrument design, how the instruments were installed, and the resultant data from this monitoring system.

  11. Quantifying Deep Vadose Zone Soil Water Potential Changes At A Waste Disposal Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Joel M. Hubbell; Deborah L. McElroy

    2007-10-01

    Recent advances in moisture monitoring using tensiometers has allowed long-duration, high quality data sets from within the deep vadose zone. A network of about 30 advanced tensiometers in 18 wells provided field-scale data to monitor moisture conditions and movement in the subsurface in and around a mixed waste disposal site at depths ranging from 6 to over 67 m below land surface (bls). Sensors are located in both sediments and fractured rock within the geologic profile and some have been in operation for over 10 years. The moisture monitoring was able to detect long term declines in moisture content presumably in response to lower than normal precipitation and resultant infiltration over the time period from 2000 to 2004. This trend was reversed in 2005 and 2006 in more than half of the monitoring sites over the 6 to 33 m depth interval and in several monitoring sites from 33 to 67 m, in response to normal to above normal precipitation. This tensiometer data can be used to evaluate the appropriateness of the current conceptual model of flow at this site. It also shows that a moisture monitoring system should be effective to rapidly validate that a proposed remedial action (such as placement of an ET cover) would be effective in reducing the moisture movement to levels similar to those in undisturbed sites outside of the disposal area. This paper will describe the instrument design, how the instruments were installed, and the resultant data from this monitoring system.

  12. Characterization and Potential Remediation Approaches for Vadose Zone Contamination at Hanford 241-SX Tank Farm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eberlein, Susan J.; Sydnor, Harold A.; Parker, Danny L.; Glaser, Danney R.

    2013-01-10

    Unplanned releases of radioactive and hazardous wastes have occurred at the 241-SX Tank Farm on the U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site in southeast Washington State. Interim and long-term mitigation efforts are currently under evaluation for 241-SX Tank Farm. Two contiguous interim surface barriers have been designed for deployment at 241-SX Tank Farm to reduce future moisture infiltration; however, construction of the surface barriers has been deferred to allow testing of alternative technologies for soil moisture reduction and possibly contaminant source term reduction. Previous tests performed by other organizations at the Hanford Site have demonstrated that: vadose zone desiccation using large diameter (greater than 4 inch) boreholes is feasible; under certain circumstances, mobile contaminants may be removed in addition to water vapor; and small diameter (approximately 2 inch) boreholes (such as those placed by the direct push hydraulic hammer) can be used to perform vapor extractions. Evaluation of the previous work combined with laboratory test results have led to the design of a field proof-of-principle test to remove water and possibly mobile contaminants at greater depths, using small boreholes placed with the direct push unit.

  13. Physical modeling of shrink-swell cycles and cracking in a clayey vadose zone

    CERN Document Server

    Chertkov, V Y

    2014-01-01

    Physical understanding of the crack origin and quantitative physical prediction of the crack volume variation far from the clay soil surface are necessary to protect the underlying aquifers from pollutants. The basis of this work is an available physical model for predicting the shrinkage and swelling curves in the maximum water content range (the primary curves) and crack volume variation. The objective of the work is to generalize this model to the conditions of the deep layer of a clayey vadose zone with the overburden pressure, multiple shrinkage-swelling, and variation of water content in a small range. We aim to show that the scanning shrinkage and swelling curves, and steady shrink-swell cycles existing in such conditions, inevitably lead to the occurrence of cracks and a hysteretic crack volume. The generalization is based on the transition to the increasingly complex soil medium from the contributive clay, through the intra-aggregate matrix and aggregated soil with no cracking, to the soil with crack...

  14. Numerical investigation of the impact of ethanol on flow in the vadose zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sciortino, Antonella; Leij, Feike J

    2012-01-01

    There is a need to elucidate the impact of ethanol on the subsurface environment because of the application of ethanol as automotive fuel. This study quantifies the effects of changes in surface tension, viscosity, and density induced by ethanol on the transmission and retention of water in the vadose zone. The HYDRUS-1D model was modified to simulate two different scenarios of flow in a sandy loam involving ponding (constant head) or spillage with a subsequent rainfall event (constant flux). Solutions containing different amounts of the highly miscible ethanol (10, 50, and 100% by weight) as well as pristine water were considered. During ponding, ethanol reduced the amount of fluid entering the soil and slowed down the advancement of the wetting front. Viscosity effects were predominant for this scenario, reducing the average depth of the infiltrating liquid up to 44%. The total amount of pure ethanol that entered the soil was 11.38 vs. 17.64 cm for pure water. For the spillage scenario, the results suggest that density has little impact on the liquid movement. Surface tension effects are predominant in the upper portion of the soil. The changes in hydraulic conductivity due to ethanol-induced modifications of solution viscosity are responsible for the slower advancement of the moisture front. The 10% ethanol solution moved 43.1% faster than pure ethanol during the first 2 d because of viscosity and surface tension effects. PMID:22268725

  15. Summary of Uranium Solubility Studies in Concrete Waste Forms and Vadose Zone Environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Golovich, Elizabeth C.; Wellman, Dawn M.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bovaird, Chase C.

    2011-09-30

    One of the methods being considered for safely disposing of Category 3 low-level radioactive wastes is to encase the waste in concrete. Concrete encasement would contain and isolate the waste packages from the hydrologic environment and act as an intrusion barrier. The current plan for waste isolation consists of stacking low-level waste packages on a trench floor, surrounding the stacks with reinforced steel, and encasing these packages in concrete. These concrete-encased waste stacks are expected to vary in size with maximum dimensions of 6.4 m long, 2.7 m wide, and 4 m high. The waste stacks are expected to have a surrounding minimum thickness of 15 cm of concrete encasement. These concrete-encased waste packages are expected to withstand environmental exposure (solar radiation, temperature variations, and precipitation) until an interim soil cover or permanent closure cover is installed and to remain largely intact thereafter. Any failure of concrete encasement may result in water intrusion and consequent mobilization of radionuclides from the waste packages. This report presents the results of investigations elucidating the uranium mineral phases controlling the long-term fate of uranium within concrete waste forms and the solubility of these phases in concrete pore waters and alkaline, circum-neutral vadose zone environments.

  16. Perched-Water Analysis Related to Deep Vadose Zone Contaminant Transport and Impact to Groundwater

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oostrom, Martinus; Truex, Michael J.; Carroll, KC; Chronister, Glen B.

    2013-11-15

    Perched-water conditions have been observed in the vadose zone above a fine-grained zone that is located just a few meters above the water table beneath the B-complex at the Hanford Site. The perched water, containing elevated concentrations of uranium and technetium-99, is important to consider in evaluating the future flux of contaminated water into the groundwater. A study was conducted to examine the perched-water conditions and quantitatively evaluate 1) factors that control perching behavior, 2) contaminant flux toward groundwater, and, 3) associated groundwater impact. Based on the current vertical transport pathways and large areal extent of the perched system, the evaluation was conducted using a one-dimensional (1-D) analysis. Steady-state scoping calculations showed that the perching-layer hydraulic conductivity is likely to be up to two orders of magnitude less than the base case value obtained from Hanford site literature. Numerical flow and transport simulations provided both steady-state and transient system estimates of water and contaminant behavior and were used to further refine the range of conditions consistent with current observations of perched water height and to provide estimates of future water and contaminant flux to groundwater. With a recharge rate of 6 cm/yr, representative of current disturbed surface conditions, contaminant flux from the perched water occurs over a time interval of tens of years. However, if the recharge rate is 0.35 cm/yr, representative of returning recharge to pre-Hanford Site levels, the contaminant flux into the groundwater is spread over hundreds of years. It was also demonstrated that removal of perched water by pumping would reduce the flux of water (and associated contaminants) to the groundwater, thereby impacting the long-term rate of contaminant movement to the groundwater.

  17. Study of Vadose Zone Monitoring at the Hanford Site Task 2 Potential Applications at the Central Plateau Remediation Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report is the second of two studies on potential applications for vadose zone monitoring (VZM) at the Hanford Site. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) agreed to perform the studies in a letter from M. S. Schlender, DOE, to M. L. Goldstein, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and M. A. Wilson, Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology), subject ''Vadose Zone Monitoring Study,'' 02-ERD-0055, dated March 11, 2002. The first study evaluated the potential for performance monitoring at the Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility (ERDF) and was published as ''Study of Vadose Zone Monitoring at the Hanford Site, Task I . Use in New Cells at the Environmental Restoration Disposal Facility'', dated May 2003 (DOE/RL---2003-31). This report is Task 2 and examines the potential for VZM at waste sites and tank farms in the 200 East and West Areas of the Central Plateau Remediation Project (Central Plateau). The potential benefits of VZM are discussed in the introduction, as well as the objectives of the study. A summary of the hydrogeology of the central plateau is presented. This includes a discussion of the stratigraphy, vadose zone transport, and groundwater characteristics. A chapter on the regulatory framework is presented in the context of the anticipated remediation, Environmental Protection Agency regulations, and the regulations of other western states. While the previous Task I study presented a survey of commercial sites in the western part of the United States, this report surveys vadose zone monitoring at other government sites in the western United States. Most of the significant Department of Energy Sites are discussed and compared. Since the western part of the United States contains many of the DOE research facilities, a discussion is presented on the vadose zone research and development activities at these facilities. The ongoing development and use of VZM by the Air Force, Navy, and Army is presented. A summary is presented of the planned

  18. Torpor and basking in a small arid zone marsupial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warnecke, Lisa; Turner, James M.; Geiser, Fritz

    2008-01-01

    The high energetic cost associated with endothermic rewarming from torpor is widely seen as a major disadvantage of torpor. We tested the hypothesis that small arid zone marsupials, which have limited access to energy in the form of food but ample access to solar radiation, employ basking to facilitate arousal from torpor and reduce the costs of rewarming. We investigated torpor patterns and basking behaviour in free-ranging fat-tailed dunnarts Sminthopsis crassicaudata (10 g) in autumn and winter using small, internal temperature-sensitive transmitters. Torpid animals emerged from their resting sites in cracking soil at ˜1000 h with body temperatures as low as 14.6°C and positioned themselves in the sun throughout the rewarming process. On average, torpor duration in autumn was shorter, and basking was less pronounced in autumn than in winter. These are the first observations of basking during rewarming in S. crassicaudata and only the second direct evidence of basking in a torpid mammal for the reduction of energetic costs during arousal from torpor and normothermia. Our findings suggest that although overlooked in the past, basking may be widely distributed amongst heterothermic mammals. Therefore, the energetic benefits from torpor use in wild animals may currently be underestimated.

  19. Influence of Clastic Dikes on Vertical Migration of Contaminants in the Vadose Zone at Hanford

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The purpose of this study was to examine the hypothesis that clastic dikes could form a preferential flow path through the vadose zone to the water table at the Hanford Site. Clastic dikes are subvertical structures that form within sedimentary sequences after deposition, and cut across the original sedimentary layers. They are common throughout the Hanford Site, often occurring in organized polygonal networks. In the initial phase of the project, we analyzed the large-scale geometry of the clastic dikes and developed an algorithm for simulating their spatial distribution. This result will be useful in providing maps of the potential distribution of clastic dikes in areas where they are not exposed at the surface (e.g., where covered by windblown sand or by construction of facilities like tank farms at the surface). In addition to the study of the large scale distribution of the dikes, a major focus of the project was on field, laboratory, and modeling studies of the hydrogeologic al properties of the clastic dikes and the effect that they have on transport of water through the vadose zone. These studies were performed at two field locations at the Hanford Site. We performed an extensive series of field and laboratory measurements of a large number of samples from the clastic dikes, linked with infrared (IR) and visual imagery of the clastic dikes and surrounding matrix. We developed a series of correlations from the sample data that allowed us to estimate the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity of the dike and matrix at an extremely high resolution (approximately 1 mm). The resulting grids, each of which measured several meters on a side and included nearly 4 grid nodes, were used to study the distribution of moisture between the clastic dike and surrounding matrix, as well as the relative velocities that moisture would have through the clastic dike and matrix for a number of different recharge scenarios. Results show the development of complex flow networks that

  20. Multiobjective Optimization of Effective Soil Hydraulic Properties on a Lysimeter from a Layered, Gravelly Vadose Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werisch, Stefan; Lennartz, Franz

    2013-04-01

    Estimation of effective soil hydraulic parameters for characterization of the vadose zone properties is important for many applications from prediction of solute and pesticide transport to water balance modeling in small catchments. Inverse modeling has become a common approach to infer the parameters of the water retention and hydraulic conductivity functions from dynamic experiments under varying boundary conditions. To gain further inside into to the water transport behavior of an agricultural field site with a layered, gravelly vadose zone, a lysimeter was taken and equipped with a total of 48 sensors (24 tensiometers and 24 water content probes). The sensors were arranged in 6 vertical arrays consisting of 4 sensor pairs, respectively. Pressure heads and water contents were measured in four depths in each of the arrays allowing for the estimation of the soil hydraulic properties of the three individual soil layers by inverse modeling. For each of the soil horizons, a separate objective function was defined to fit the model to the observation. We used the global multiobjective multimethod search algorithm AMALGAM (Vrugt et al., 2007) in combination with the water flow and solute transport model Hydrus1D (Šimúnek et al., 2008) to estimate the soil hydraulic properties of the Mualem van Genuchten model (van Genuchten, 1980). This experimental design served for the investigation of two important questions: a) do effective soil hydraulic properties at the lysimeter scale exist, more specifically: can a single representative parameter set be found which describes the hydraulic behavior in each of the arrays with acceptable performance? And b) which degree of freedom is necessary or required for an accurate description of the one dimensional water flow at each of the arrays? Effective soil hydraulic parameters were obtained for each of the sensor arrays individually, resulting in good agreement between the model predictions and the observations for the individual

  1. Vadose zone monitoring strategies to control water flux dynamics and changes in soil hydraulic properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdes-Abellan, Javier; Jiménez-Martínez, Joaquin; Candela, Lucila

    2013-04-01

    For monitoring the vadose zone, different strategies can be chosen, depending on the objectives and scale of observation. The effects of non-conventional water use on the vadose zone might produce impacts in porous media which could lead to changes in soil hydraulic properties, among others. Controlling these possible effects requires an accurate monitoring strategy that controls the volumetric water content, θ, and soil pressure, h, along the studied profile. According to the available literature, different monitoring systems have been carried out independently, however less attention has received comparative studies between different techniques. An experimental plot of 9x5 m2 was set with automatic and non-automatic sensors to control θ and h up to 1.5m depth. The non-automatic system consisted of ten Jet Fill tensiometers at 30, 45, 60, 90 and 120 cm (Soil Moisture®) and a polycarbonate access tube of 44 mm (i.d) for soil moisture measurements with a TRIME FM TDR portable probe (IMKO®). Vertical installation was carefully performed; measurements with this system were manual, twice a week for θ and three times per week for h. The automatic system composed of five 5TE sensors (Decagon Devices®) installed at 20, 40, 60, 90 and 120 cm for θ measurements and one MPS1 sensor (Decagon Devices®) at 60 cm depth for h. Installation took place laterally in a 40-50 cm length hole bored in a side of a trench that was excavated. All automatic sensors hourly recorded and stored in a data-logger. Boundary conditions were controlled with a volume-meter and with a meteorological station. ET was modelled with Penman-Monteith equation. Soil characterization include bulk density, gravimetric water content, grain size distribution, saturated hydraulic conductivity and soil water retention curves determined following laboratory standards. Soil mineralogy was determined by X-Ray difractometry. Unsaturated soil hydraulic parameters were model-fitted through SWRC-fit code and

  2. Rainwater harvesting in arid and semi-arid zones (repr. 1997)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boers, Th.M.

    1994-01-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, the scarcity of water can be alleviated by rainwater harvesting, which is defined as a method of inducing, collecting, storing, and conserving local surface runoff for agriculture. Rainwater harvesting can be applied with different systems, and this dissertation deals

  3. Toward catchment vadose zone characterization by linking geophysical electromagnetic induction and remote sensing data

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Hebel, C.; Rudolph, S.; Mester, A.; Huisman, J. A.; Montzka, C.; Weihermueller, L.; Vereecken, H.; Van Der Kruk, J.

    2014-12-01

    Large-scale information of the crop status can be provided by multispectral remote sensing (RS) products. However, to fully understand the observed RS patterns including plant growth related processes such as water and nutrient availability, knowledge of the vadose zone is necessary, which can be obtained by geophysical methods. We studied a 20 ha test site in Selhausen (Germany), where the upper terrace (UT) sediments consist of sand and gravel, whereas the lower terrace (LT) sediments consist of loamy silt. Leaf area index (LAI) maps that were derived from RapidEye satellite data taken after a drought period showed a high density of undulating structures of higher LAI values within the sand and gravel dominated (and generally lower LAI) UT. These structures were related to better crop performance originating from subsurface loamy silt paleo-river channels. Next, large-scale apparent electrical conductivity (ECa) data were obtained using a multi-configuration electromagnetic induction (EMI) sensor with depths of investigation (DOI) up to 1.8 m. The observed LAI patterns coincided well with the ECa patterns of the 1.8 m DOI measurements, and soil analysis confirmed the presence of silty soil in the deeper subsoil. To gain more knowledge, a novel EMI inversion scheme that inverts for a layered subsurface using multi-configuration EMI data was developed and applied to a one ha large field that contained both UT and LT sediments in the eastern and western part, respectively. The obtained smoothly changing lateral and vertical electrical conductivity model was confirmed by grain size distribution maps and two previously measured 120 m long electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) transects. Conclusively, the combined LAI and EMI analysis can be extended to relatively large areas up to the catchment scale to improve environmental models that aim at improved descriptions of plant growth, water, nutrient and energy processes.

  4. Flow dynamics and potential for biodegradation of organic contaminants in fractured rock vadose zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geller, J. T.; Holman, H.-Y.; Su, G.; Conrad, M. E.; Pruess, K.; Hunter-Cevera, J. C.

    2000-04-01

    We present an experimental approach for investigating the potential for bioremediation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in fractured rock vadose zones. The experimental work was performed with rock samples and indigenous microorganisms from the site of the United States Department of Energy's Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL), located in a basalt flow basin where VOC contamination threatens the Snake River Aquifer. Our approach has four components: (1) establishing a conceptual model for fluid and contaminant distribution in the geologic matrix of interest; (2) identification of important features of liquid distribution by means of seepage experiments in the fracture plane; (3) identification of the presence and activity of microorganisms by non-destructive monitoring of biotransformations on rock surfaces at the micron-scale; and (4) integration of flow and biological activity in natural rock "geocosms". Geocosms are core-scale flow cells that incorporate some aspects of natural conditions, such as liquid seepage in the fracture plane and moisture content. Fluid flow and distribution within fracture networks may be a significant factor in the ability of microorganisms to degrade VOCs, as they affect the availability of substrate, moisture and nutrients. Flow visualization and tracer breakthrough curves in transparent fracture replicas for unsaturated inlet conditions exhibited the channelized and intermittent nature of liquid seepage. The seepage of water and non-aqueous phase liquids (NAPLs) of varying physical and chemical properties into an initially dry replica showed only subtle differences in liquid distribution. In contrast, the seepage of a NAPL into the fracture replica containing residual water resulted in complex trapping of NAPL along the solid/water/air contact lines and diversion of NAPL to previously dry parts of the fracture. We found that a mixed culture of viable bacteria exists on the natural rock surfaces

  5. Remediation of Technetium in Vadose Zone Sediments Using Ammonia and Hydrogen Sulfide Gases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szecsody, James E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Truex, Michael J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Zhong, Lirong [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); McKinley, James P. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Qafoku, Nikolla [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Lee, Brady D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Saurey, Sabrina D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-04-17

    The feasibility of applying a combination of H2S and NH3 gases for Tc-99 remediation in vadose zone sediments evaluated in laboratory experiments showed a significant mobility decrease from 75 to 95% leachable Tc-99 in untreated sediments to 15 to 48% leachable Tc-99 after gas treatment. Individual H2S or NH3 gas treatment of sediments had little lasting effect. For the combined gas treatment, the H2S gas created reducing conditions at the pore water/mineral interface that pertechnetate was temporarily reduced/precipitated. The NH3 gas created alkaline pore water, which induces some mineral dissolution and subsequent aluminosilicate precipitation as the pH neutralizes, which may coat Tc-99 surface phases and render them less mobile. Surface phase analysis showed Tc-99 associated with weathered basalt clasts and sulfur, possibly from the precipitation of TcSx. Treatment performance was nearly the same at different Tc-99 concentration (34 to 6500 pCi/g), water content (1 to 8%), and gas injection rate, but was sensitive to gas concentrations. Low gas concentrations (< 3%) had insufficient reductant or slower mineral dissolution. High gas concentrations (>30%) formed NH4SH precipitate. The 15 - 23% mobile Tc-99 remaining after gas treatment may be caused by limited time for aluminosilicates to precipitate in experiments. Nitrogen species concentrations showed no nitrate or nitrite production and a significant decrease in the sediment microbial population over three months, suggesting nitrification of added ammonia was inhibited. Overall, this study showed that combined H2S and NH3 gas treatment of low water content sediments was a robust technology to significantly decrease Tc-99 mobility.

  6. Numerical modeling of the effect of variation of boundary conditions on vadose zone hydraulic properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tairone Paiva Leão

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available An accurate estimation of hydraulic fluxes in the vadose zone is essential for the prediction of water, nutrient and contaminant transport in natural systems. The objective of this study was to simulate the effect of variation of boundary conditions on the estimation of hydraulic properties (i.e. water content, effective unsaturated hydraulic conductivity and hydraulic flux in a one-dimensional unsaturated flow model domain. Unsaturated one-dimensional vertical water flow was simulated in a pure phase clay loam profile and in clay loam interlayered with silt loam distributed according to the third iteration of the Cantor Bar fractal object Simulations were performed using the numerical model Hydrus 1D. The upper and lower pressure heads were varied around average values of -55 cm for the near-saturation range. This resulted in combinations for the upper and lower constant head boundary conditions, respectively, of -50 and -60 cm, -40 and -70 cm, -30 and -80 cm, -20 and -90 cm, and -10 and -100 cm. For the drier range the average head between the upper and lower boundary conditions was set to -550 cm, resulting in the combinations -500 and -600 cm, -400 and -700 cm, -300 and -800 cm, -200 and -900 cm, and -100 and -1,000 cm, for upper and lower boundary conditions, respectively. There was an increase in water contents, fluxes and hydraulic conductivities with the increase in head difference between boundary conditions. Variation in boundary conditions in the pure phase and interlayered one-dimensional profiles caused significant deviations in fluxes, water contents and hydraulic conductivities compared to the simplest case (a head difference between the upper and lower constant head boundaries of 10 cm in the wetter range and 100 cm in the drier range.

  7. Experimental and modeling of the unsaturated transports of S-metolachlor and its metabolites in glaciofluvial vadose zone solids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidoli, Pauline; Lassabatere, Laurent; Angulo-Jaramillo, Rafael; Baran, Nicole

    2016-07-01

    The transport of pesticides to groundwater is assumed to be impacted by flow processes and geochemical interactions occurring in the vadose zone. In this study, the transport of S-metolachlor (SMOC) and its two metabolites ESA-metolachlor (MESA) and OXA-metolachlor (MOXA) in vadose zone materials of a glaciofluvial aquifer is studied at laboratory scale. Column experiments are used to study the leaching of a conservative tracer (bromide) and SMOC, MESA and MOXA under unsaturated conditions in two lithofacies, a bimodal gravel (Gcm,b) and a sand (S-x). Tracer experiments showed water fractionation into mobile and immobile compartments more pronounced in bimodal gravel columns. In both lithofacies columns, SMOC outflow is delayed (retardation factor>2) and mass balance reveals depletion (mass balance of 0.59 and 0.77 in bimodal gravel and sand, respectively). However, complete mass elution associated with retardation factors close to unity shows that there is no adsorption of MESA and MOXA in either lithofacies. SMOC transport is characterized by non-equilibrium sorption and sink term in both bimodal gravel and sand columns. Batch experiments carried out using agitation times consistent with column water residence times confirmed a time-dependence of SMOC sorption and high adsorption rates (>80%) of applied concentrations. Desorption experiments confirm the irreversibility of a major part of the SMOC adsorption onto particles, corresponding to the sink term in columns. In the bimodal gravel column, SMOC adsorption occurs mainly on reactive particles in contact with mobile water because of flow regionalization whereas in the sand column, there is pesticide diffusion to the immobile water. Such results clearly show that sorption mechanisms in the vadose zone solids below the soil are both solute and contact-time-dependent and are impacted by hydrodynamic conditions. The more rapid transport of MESA and MOXA to the aquifer would be controlled mainly by water flow

  8. Linking river, floodplain, and vadose zone hydrology to improve restoration of a coastal river affected by saltwater intrusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, D; Muñoz-Carpena, R; Wan, Y; Hedgepeth, M; Zheng, F; Roberts, R; Rossmanith, R

    2010-01-01

    Floodplain forests provide unique ecological structure and function, which are often degraded or lost when watershed hydrology is modified. Restoration of damaged ecosystems requires an understanding of surface water, groundwater, and vadose (unsaturated) zone hydrology in the floodplain. Soil moisture and porewater salinity are of particular importance for seed germination and seedling survival in systems affected by saltwater intrusion but are difficult to monitor and often overlooked. This study contributes to the understanding of floodplain hydrology in one of the last bald cypress [Taxodium distichum (L.) Rich.] floodplain swamps in southeast Florida. We investigated soil moisture and porewater salinity dynamics in the floodplain of the Loxahatchee River, where reduced freshwater flow has led to saltwater intrusion and a transition to salt-tolerant, mangrove-dominated communities. Twenty-four dielectric probes measuring soil moisture and porewater salinity every 30 min were installed along two transects-one in an upstream, freshwater location and one in a downstream tidal area. Complemented by surface water, groundwater, and meteorological data, these unique 4-yr datasets quantified the spatial variability and temporal dynamics of vadose zone hydrology. Results showed that soil moisture can be closely predicted based on river stage and topographic elevation (overall Nash-Sutcliffe coefficient of efficiency = 0.83). Porewater salinity rarely exceeded tolerance thresholds (0.3125 S m(-1)) for bald cypress upstream but did so in some downstream areas. This provided an explanation for observed vegetation changes that both surface water and groundwater salinity failed to explain. The results offer a methodological and analytical framework for floodplain monitoring in locations where restoration success depends on vadose zone hydrology and provide relationships for evaluating proposed restoration and management scenarios for the Loxahatchee River. PMID:21043263

  9. Influence of colloids on the attenuation and transport of phosphorus in alluvial gravel aquifer and vadose zone media.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pang, Liping; Lafogler, Mark; Knorr, Bastian; McGill, Erin; Saunders, Darren; Baumann, Thomas; Abraham, Phillip; Close, Murray

    2016-04-15

    Phosphorous (P) leaching (e.g., from effluents, fertilizers) and transport in highly permeable subsurface media can be an important pathway that contributes to eutrophication of receiving surface waters as groundwater recharges the base-flow of surface waters. Here we investigated attenuation and transport of orthophosphate-P in gravel aquifer and vadose zone media in the presence and absence of model colloids (Escherichia coli, kaolinite, goethite). Experiments were conducted using repacked aquifer media in a large column (2m long, 0.19m in diameter) and intact cores (0.4m long, 0.24m in diameter) of vadose zone media under typical field flow rates. In the absence of the model colloids, P was readily traveled through the aquifer media with little attenuation (up to 100% recovery) and retardation, and P adsorption was highly reversible. Conversely, addition of the model colloids generally resulted in reduced P concentration and mass recovery (down to 28% recovery), and increased retardation and adsorption irreversibility in both aquifer and vadose zone media. The degree of colloid-assisted P attenuation was most significant in the presence of fine material and Fe-containing colloids at low flow rate but was least significant in the presence of coarse gravels and E. coli at high flow rate. Based on the experimental results, setback distances of 49-53m were estimated to allow a reduction of P concentrations in groundwater to acceptable levels in the receiving water. These estimates were consistent with field observations in the same aquifer media. Colloid-assisted P attenuation can be utilized to develop mitigation strategies to better manage effluent applications in gravelly soils. To efficiently retain P within soil matrix and reduce P leaching to groundwater, it is recommended to select soils that are rich in iron oxides, to periodically disturb soil preferential flow paths by tillage, and to apply a low irrigation rate. PMID:26803685

  10. An explicit approach to capture diffusive effects in finite water-content method for solving vadose zone flow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Jianting; Ogden, Fred L.; Lai, Wencong; Chen, Xiangfeng; Talbot, Cary A.

    2016-04-01

    Vadose zone flow problems are usually solved from the Richards equation. Solution to the Richards equation is generally challenging because the hydraulic conductivity and diffusivity in the equation are strongly non-linear functions of water content. The finite water-content method was proposed as an alternative general solution method of the vadose zone flow problem for infiltration, falling slugs, and vadose zone response to water table dynamics based on discretizing the water content domain into numerous bins instead of the traditional spatial discretization. In this study, we develop an improved approach to the original finite water-content method (referred to as TO method hereinafter) that better simulates diffusive effects but retains the robustness of the TO method. The approach treats advection and diffusion separately and considers diffusion on a bin by bin basis. After discretizing into water content bins, we treat the conductivity and diffusivity in individual bins as water content dependent constant evaluated at given water content corresponding to each bin. For each bin, we can solve the flow equations analytically since the hydraulic conductivity and diffusivity can be treated as a constant. We then develop solutions for each bin to determine the diffusive water amounts at each time step. The water amount ahead of the convective front for each bin is redistributed among water content bins to account for diffusive effects. The application of developed solution is straightforward only involving algebraic manipulations at each time step. The method can mainly improve water content profiles, but has no significant difference for the total infiltration rate and cumulative infiltration compared to the TO method. Although the method separately deals with advection and diffusion, it can account for the coupling effects of advection and diffusion reasonably well.

  11. An Integrated System for Vadose Zone Monitoring, Model Calibration, Performance Assessment, and Prediction (MCAP) in Hanford's T Tank Farm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Z. F.; Keller, J. M.; Myers, D. A.; Sydnor, H. A.

    2006-12-01

    The Hanford Site has 149 underground single-shell tanks that store hazardous radioactive waste. Many of these tanks and their associated infrastructure (e.g., pipelines, diversion boxes) have leaked. Some of the leaked waste is projected to have entered the groundwater. The largest known leak occurred from the T-106 Tank in 1973. Most of the contaminants from that leak still reside within the vadose zone beneath the T Tank Farm. To minimize movement of this residual contaminant plume, an interim infiltration barrier will be constructed on the ground surface. This barrier is expected to prevent infiltrating water from reaching the plume and moving it further towards groundwater. An integrated system will be used for vadose zone moisture monitoring, model calibration, performance assessment, and prediction (MCAP). The system is to be broadly- designed so that the data can be used for multiple purposes. In addition to monitoring soil water movement both under the proposed barrier and adjacent to it, the collected data can also be used to characterize vadose zone hydraulic properties and to calibrate a numerical model. The calibrated model can then be used to assess the performance of the infiltration barrier and to predict water flow and contaminant transport under conditions with and/or without a barrier. A MCAP system is being applied to the Hanford's T Tank Farm. Soil water content is to be monitored using both neutron and capacitance probes; soil water pressure and soil temperature will be monitored with heat dissipation sensors; and water flux will be measured using water fluxmeters. These instruments will be installed in direct push probe holes advanced by a hydraulic hammer unit. Excluding neutron probe measurements, all data collection and data transmittal will be sent to an automated central server. This design allows measurements to be taken continually and reduces the need for personnel to enter the farm thereby increasing worker safety. It is expected that

  12. Estimation of percolating water dynamics through the vadose zone of the Postojna cave on the basis of isotope composition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janja Kogovšek

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Within the scope of monitoring water percolation through the 100-m thick vadose zone in the area of Postojnska jama continuous measurements of precipitation were carried out on the surface, and continuous measurements of water flowandphysicalandchemicalparametersof selected water trickles were performed under the surface. Occasional samples of percolating waters were taken for the analysis of water oxygen isotope composition. An exponential model of groundwater flowwaselaborated,bymeansofwhichtheretentiontime of water in individual trickles was estimated. Modelled retention times of groundwater range from 2.5 months to over one year.

  13. Characteristics and laws of MODS coupling relation in arid zone under global change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Ranghui; ZHANG Huizhi; HUANG Qing

    2006-01-01

    Global change has influenced the distribution pattern and spatio-temporal changes of resources in arid zone, and has restrained the land use and land cover change, which is shown by water-heat state, landscape structure, climate effect, and human activities. The above-mentioned characteristics have a close coupling relation with the mountain-oasisdesert system (MODS). The climate in Central Asia arid zone is warm and wet, which is different from that in northern China which takes a tendency of aridity, and the mechanism has restricted the characteristics and laws of MODS. Systematic interface characteristics and process, especially the formation,transformation and consumption laws of water resource reflect directly MODS's response to global change in arid zone. Spatio-temporal pattern, dynamic change, scale change and coupling mode of MODS reflect the ecology mechanism between the systems and within the systems.

  14. Inorganic carbon fluxes across the vadose zone of planted and unplanted soil mesocosms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. M. Thaysen

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The efflux of carbon dioxide (CO2 from soils influences atmospheric CO2 concentrations and thereby climate change. The partitioning of inorganic carbon fluxes in the vadose zone between emission to the atmosphere and to the groundwater was investigated. Carbon dioxide partial pressure in the soil gas (pCO2, alkalinity, soil moisture and temperature were measured over depth and time in unplanted and planted (barley mesocosms. The dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC percolation flux was calculated from the pCO2, alkalinity and the water flux at the mesocosm bottom. Carbon dioxide exchange between the soil surface and the atmosphere was measured at regular intervals. The soil diffusivity was determined from soil radon-222 (222Rn emanation rates and soil air Rn concentration profiles, and was used in conjunction with measured pCO2 gradients to calculate the soil CO2 production. Carbon dioxide fluxes were modelled using the HP1 module of the Hydrus 1-D software. The average CO2 effluxes to the atmosphere from unplanted and planted mesocosm ecosystems during 78 days of experiment were 0.1 ± 0.07 and 4.9 ± 0.07 μmol carbon (C m−2 s−1, respectively, and largely exceeded the corresponding DIC percolation fluxes of 0.01 ± 0.004 and 0.06 ± 0.03 μmol C m−2 s−1. Post-harvest soil respiration (Rs was only 10% of the Rs during plant growth, while the post-harvest DIC percolation flux was more than one third of the flux during growth. The Rs was controlled by production and diffusivity of CO2 in the soil. The DIC percolation flux was largely controlled by the pCO2 and the drainage flux due to low solution pH. Plant biomass and soil pCO2 were high in the mesocosms as compared to a standard field situation. Our results indicate no change of the cropland C balance under elevated atmospheric CO2 in a warmer future climate, in which plant biomass and soil pCO2 are expected to increase.

  15. Influence of Sources on Plutonium Mobility and Oxidation State Transformations in Vadose Zone Sediments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaplan,D.; Powell, B.; Duff, M.; Demirkanli, D.; Denham, M.; Fjeld, R.; Molz, F.

    2007-01-01

    Well-defined solid sources of Pu(III) (PuCl3), Pu(IV) (Pu (NO3)4 and Pu (C2O4)2), and Pu(VI) (PuO2(NO3)2) were placed in lysimeters containing vadose zone sediments and exposed to natural weather conditions for 2 or 11 years. The objective of this study was to measure the release rate of Pu and the changes in the Pu oxidation states from these Pu sources with the intent to develop a reactive transport model source-term. Pu(III) and Pu(IV) sources had identical Pu concentration depth profiles and similar Pu release rates. Source release data indicate that PuIV(C2O4)2 was the least mobile, whereas PuVIO2(NO3)2 was the most mobile. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence (SXRF) revealed that Pu was very unevenly distributed on the sediment and Mn concentrations were too low (630 mg kg-1) and perhaps of the wrong mineralogy to influence Pu distribution. The high stability of sorbed Pu(IV) is proposed to be due to the formation of a stable hydrolyzed Pu(IV) surface species. Plutonium X-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy (XANES) analysis conducted on sediment recovered at the end of the study from the PuIV(NO3)4- and PuIIICl3-amended lysimeters contained essentially identical Pu distributions: approximately 37% Pu(III), 67% Pu(IV), 0% Pu(V), and 0% Pu(VI). These results were similar to those using a wet chemistry Pu oxidation state assay, except the latter method did not detect any Pu(III) present on the sediment but instead indicated that 93-98% of the Pu existed as Pu(IV). This discrepancy was likely attributable to incomplete extraction of sediment Pu(III) by the wet chemistry method. Although Pu has been known to exist in the +3 oxidation state under microbially induced reducing conditions for decades, to our knowledge, this is the first observation of steady-state Pu(III) in association with natural sediments. On the basis of thermodynamic considerations, Pu(III) has a wide potential distribution, especially in acidic environments, and as such may warrant further

  16. Inorganic carbon fluxes across the vadose zone of planted and unplanted soil mesocosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaysen, E. M.; Jacques, D.; Jessen, S.; Andersen, C. E.; Laloy, E.; Ambus, P.; Postma, D.; Jakobsen, I.

    2014-12-01

    The efflux of carbon dioxide (CO2) from soils influences atmospheric CO2 concentrations and thereby climate change. The partitioning of inorganic carbon (C) fluxes in the vadose zone between emission to the atmosphere and to the groundwater was investigated to reveal controlling underlying mechanisms. Carbon dioxide partial pressure in the soil gas (pCO2), alkalinity, soil moisture and temperature were measured over depth and time in unplanted and planted (barley) mesocosms. The dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) percolation flux was calculated from the pCO2, alkalinity and the water flux at the mesocosm bottom. Carbon dioxide exchange between the soil surface and the atmosphere was measured at regular intervals. The soil diffusivity was determined from soil radon-222 (222Rn) emanation rates and soil air Rn concentration profiles and was used in conjunction with measured pCO2 gradients to calculate the soil CO2 production. Carbon dioxide fluxes were modeled using the HP1 module of the Hydrus 1-D software. The average CO2 effluxes to the atmosphere from unplanted and planted mesocosm ecosystems during 78 days of experiment were 0.1 ± 0.07 and 4.9 ± 0.07 μmol C m-2 s-1, respectively, and grossly exceeded the corresponding DIC percolation fluxes of 0.01 ± 0.004 and 0.06 ± 0.03 μmol C m-2 s-1. Plant biomass was high in the mesocosms as compared to a standard field situation. Post-harvest soil respiration (Rs) was only 10% of the Rs during plant growth, while the post-harvest DIC percolation flux was more than one-third of the flux during growth. The Rs was controlled by production and diffusivity of CO2 in the soil. The DIC percolation flux was largely controlled by the pCO2 and the drainage flux due to low solution pH. Modeling suggested that increasing soil alkalinity during plant growth was due to nutrient buffering during root nitrate uptake.

  17. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Borehole 299-E33-45 Near BX-102 in the B-BX-BY Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Last, George V.; Gee, Glendon W.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; Orr, Robert D.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Brown, Christopher F.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Table 4.22. The data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The remaining text is unchanged from the original report issued in 2002. The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area B-BX-BY. This report is the first in a series of four reports to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from borehole 299-E33-45 installed northeast of tank BX-102.

  18. Influence of alkaline co-contaminants on technetium mobility in vadose zone sediments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pertechnetate was slowly reduced in a natural, untreated arid sediment under anaerobic conditions (0.02 nmol g−1 h−1), which could occur in low permeability zones in the field, most of which was quickly oxidized. A small portion of the surface Tc may be incorporated into slowly dissolving surface phases, so was not readily oxidized/remobilized into pore water. In contrast, pertechnetate reduction in an anaerobic sediment containing adsorbed ferrous iron as the reductant was rapid (15–600 nmol g−1 h−1), and nearly all (96–98%) was rapidly oxidized/remobilized (2.6–6.8 nmol g−1 h−1) within hours. Tc reduction in an anaerobic sediment containing 0.5–10 mM sulfide showed a relatively slow reduction rate (0.01–0.03 nmol g−1 h−1) that was similar to observations in the natural sediment. Pertechnetate infiltration into sediment with a highly alkaline water resulted in rapid reduction (0.07–0.2 nmol g−1 h−1) from ferrous iron released during biotite or magnetite dissolution. Oxidation of NaOH-treated sediments resulted in slow Tc oxidation (∼0.05 nmol g−1 h−1) of a small fraction of the surface Tc (13–23%). The Tc remaining on the surface was TcIV (by XANES), and autoradiography and elemental maps of Tc (by electron microprobe) showed Tc was present associated with specific minerals, rather than being evenly distributed on the surface. Dissolution of quartz, montmorillonite, muscovite, and kaolinite also occurred in the alkaline water, resulting in significant aqueous silica and aluminum. Over time, aluminosilicates, cancrinite, zeolite and sodalite were precipitating. These precipitates may be coating surface Tc(IV) phases, limiting reoxidation. - Highlights: • Pertechnetate was slowly reduced in natural arid sediment, and rapidly oxidized. • Sediment with added Fe2+ rapidly reduced pertechnetate, and was rapidly oxidized. • In 4 M NaOH, pertechnetate was rapidly reduced by Fe2+ from biotite dissolution. • In the Na

  19. Three-dimensional plume dynamics in the vadose zone: PORFLO-3 modeling of a defense waste leak at Hanford

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In 1973, approximately 450 m3 of liquid containing radioactive and chemical wastes leaked from the 241-T-106 single-shell tank into the vadose zone at the US Department of Energy's Hanford Site in south-central Washington State. The extent of the 137Cs, 144Ce, and 106Ru contaminant plumes in the vadose zone was estimated in 1973 and 1978 by gamma spectrometry in monitoring wells. Using site data and the PORFLO-3 computer model, a three-dimensional, transient plume migration model was developed for 106Ru and 137Cs. The model was calibrated to the 1973 measured plumes of 106Ru and 137Cs. The calibrated model was then used to study plume migration up to 1990. The simulated 106Ru distribution for 1978 extended deeper than reported values. The simulated distribution of 137Cs for 1978 approximated the measured distribution; the 1973 and 1978 137Cs distributions are similar because of the long half-life and high sorption coefficient of 137Cs. 8 figs., 15 refs

  20. A resolution analysis of two geophysical imaging methods for characterizing and monitoring hydrologic conditions in the Vadose zone.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brainard, James Robert; Hammond, Gary.; Alumbaugh, David L. (University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI); La Brecque, D.J. (Multi-Phase Technologies, LLC, Sparks, NV)

    2007-06-01

    This research project analyzed the resolution of two geophysical imaging techniques, electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and cross-borehole ground penetrating radar (XBGPR), for monitoring subsurface flow and transport processes within the vadose zone. The study was based on petrophysical conversion of moisture contents and solute distributions obtained from unsaturated flow forward modeling. This modeling incorporated boundary conditions from a potable water and a salt tracer infiltration experiment performed at the Sandia-Tech Vadose Zone (STVZ) facility, and high-resolution spatial grids (6.25-cm spacing over a 1700-m domain) and incorporated hydraulic properties measured on samples collected from the STVZ. The analysis process involved petrophysical conversion of moisture content and solute concentration fields to geophysical property fields, forward geophysical modeling using the geophysical property fields to obtain synthetic geophysical data, and finally, inversion of this synthetic data. These geophysical property models were then compared to those derived from the conversion of the hydrologic forward modeling to provide an understanding of the resolution and limitations of the geophysical techniques.

  1. Building Conceptual Models of Field-Scale Uranium Reactive Transport in a Dynamic Vadose Zone-Aquifer-River System

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Subsurface simulation is being used to build, test, and couple conceptual process models to better understand controls on a 0.4 km by 1.0 km uranium plume that has persisted above the drinking water standard in the groundwater of the Hanford 300 Area over the last 15 years. At this site, uranium-contaminated sediments in the vadose zone and aquifer are subject to significant variations in water levels and velocities driven by the diurnal, weekly, seasonal, and episodic Columbia River stage dynamics. Groundwater flow reversals typically occur twice a day with significant exchange of river water and groundwater in the near-river aquifer. Mixing of the dilute solution chemistry of the river with the groundwater complicates the uranium sorption behavior as the mobility of U(VI) has been shown experimentally to be a function of pH, carbonate, calcium, and uranium. Furthermore, uranium mass transfer between solid and aqueous phases has been observed to be rate-limited in the context of the high groundwater velocities resulting from the river stage fluctuations and the highly transmissive sediments (hydraulic conductivities ∼1500 m/d). One- and two-dimensional vertical cross-sectional simulations of variably-saturated flow and reactive transport, based on laboratory-derived models of distributed rate mass transfer and equilibrium multicomponent surface complexation, are used to assess uranium transport at the dynamic vadose zone aquifer interface as well as changes to uranium mobility due to incursions of river water into the aquifer

  2. Geochemical Processes Data Package for the Vadose Zone in the Single-Shell Tank Waste Management Areas at the Hanford Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This data package discusses the geochemistry of vadose zone sediments beneath the single-shell tank farms at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Hanford Site. The purpose of the report is to provide a review of the most recent and relevant geochemical process information available for the vadose zone beneath the single-shell tank farms and the Integrated Disposal Facility. Two companion reports to this one were recently published which discuss the geology of the farms (Reidel and Chamness 2007) and groundwater flow and contamination beneath the farms (Horton 2007)

  3. Review of Techniques to Characterize the Distribution of Chromate Contamination in the Vadose Zone of the 100 Areas at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dresel, P. Evan; Truex, Michael J.; Sweeney, Mark D.

    2007-09-01

    The purpose of this report is to identify and evaluate the state-of-the-art techniques for characteriza¬tion of chromate contamination in the vadose zone of the 100 Areas at the Hanford Site. The techniques include direct techniques for analysis of chromium in the subsurface as well as indirect techniques to identify contamination through geophysical properties, soil moisture, or co-contaminants. Characteri¬zation for the distribution of chromium concentration in the vadose zone is needed to assess potential sources for chromate contamination plumes in groundwater at the 100-D, 100-K, and 100-B/C Areas.

  4. Geochemical Processes Data Package for the Vadose Zone in the Single-Shell Tank Waste Management Areas at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cantrell, Kirk J.; Zachara, John M.; Dresel, P. Evan; Krupka, Kenneth M.; Serne, R. Jeffrey

    2007-09-28

    This data package discusses the geochemistry of vadose zone sediments beneath the single-shell tank farms at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Hanford Site. The purpose of the report is to provide a review of the most recent and relevant geochemical process information available for the vadose zone beneath the single-shell tank farms and the Integrated Disposal Facility. Two companion reports to this one were recently published which discuss the geology of the farms (Reidel and Chamness 2007) and groundwater flow and contamination beneath the farms (Horton 2007).

  5. Rainwater harvesting in arid and semi-arid zones (repr. 1997)

    OpenAIRE

    Boers, Th.M.

    1994-01-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, the scarcity of water can be alleviated by rainwater harvesting, which is defined as a method of inducing, collecting, storing, and conserving local surface runoff for agriculture. Rainwater harvesting can be applied with different systems, and this dissertation deals with the system of micro-catchments. A microcatchment consists of a runoff area and a basin area in which a tree is planted. The purpose of this study was to develop a design procedure for micro-ca...

  6. Influence of Alkaline Co-Contaminants on Technetium Mobility in Vadose Zone Sediments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szecsody, James E.; Jansik, Danielle P.; McKinley, James P.; Hess, Nancy J.

    2014-09-01

    Pertechnetate was slowly reduced in a natural, untreated arid sediment under anaerobic conditions (0.02 nmol g-1 h-1), which could occur in low permeability zones in the field, most of which was quickly oxidized. A small portion of the surface Tc may be incorporated into slowly dissolving surface phases, so was not readily oxidized/remobilized into pore water. In contrast, pertechnetate reduction in an anaerobic sediment containing adsorbed ferrous iron as the reductant was rapid (15 to 600 nmol g-1 h-1), and nearly all (96 - 98%) was rapidly oxidized/remobilized (2.6 to 6.8 nmol g-1 h-1) within hours. Tc reduction in an anaerobic sediment containing 0.5 to 10 mM sulfide showed a relatively slow reduction rate (0.01 to 0.03 nmol g-1 h-1) that was similar to observations in the natural sediment. Pertechnetate infiltration into sediment with a highly alkaline water resulted in rapid reduction (0.07 to 0.2 nmol g-1 h-1) from ferrous iron released during biotite or magnetite dissolution. Oxidation of NaOH-treated sediments resulted in slow Tc oxidation (~0.05 nmol g-1 h-1) of a small fraction of the surface Tc (13% to 23%). The Tc remaining on the surface was TcIV (by XANES), and autoradiography and elemental maps of Tc (by electron microprobe) showed Tc was present associated with specific minerals, rather than being evenly distributed on the surface. Dissolution of quartz, montmorillonite, muscovite, and kaolinite also occurred in the alkaline water, resulting in significant aqueous silica and aluminum. Over time, aluminosilicates cancrinite, zeolite and sodalite were precipitating. These precipitates may be coating surface Tc(IV) phases, limiting reoxidation.

  7. Geochemical Characterization of Chromate Contamination in the 100 Area Vadose Zone at the Hanford Site - Part 2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qafoku, Nikolla; Dresel, P. Evan; McKinley, James P.; Ilton, Eugene S.; Um, Wooyong; Resch, Charles T.; Kukkadapu, Ravi K.; Petersen, Scott W.

    2011-01-04

    At the Hanford Site, chromate was used throughout the 100 Areas (100-B, 100-C, 100-D/DR, 100-F, 100-H, and 100 K) as a corrosion inhibitor in reactor cooling water. Chromate was delivered in rail cars, tanker trucks, barrels, and local pipelines as dichromate granular solid or stock solution. In many occasions, chromate was inevitably discharged to surface or near-surface ground through spills during handling, pipeline leaks, or during disposal to cribs. The composition of the liquids that were discharged is not known and it is quite possible that Cr(VI) fate and transport in the contaminated sediments would be a function of the chemical composition of the waste fluids. The major objectives of this investigation which was limited in scope by the financial resources available, were to 1) determine the leaching characteristics of hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] from contaminated sediments collected from 100-D Area spill sites; 2) elucidate possible Cr(VI) mineral and/or chemical associations that may be responsible for Cr(VI) retention in the Hanford Site 100 Areas through the use of macroscopic leaching studies, and microscale characterization of contaminated sediments; and 3) provide information to construct a conceptual model of Cr(VI) geochemistry in the Hanford 100 Area vadose zone that can be used for developing options for environmental remediation. The information gathered from this research effort will help to further improve our understanding of Cr(VI) behavior in the vadose zone and will also help in accelerating the 100 Area Columbia River Corridor cleanup by providing valuable information to develop remedial action based on a fundamental understanding of Cr(VI) vadose zone geochemistry. A series of column experiments were conducted with contaminated sediments to study Cr(VI) desorption patterns. Column experiments used the field size fraction of the sediment samples and a simulated Hanford Site groundwater solution. Periodic stop flow events were applied to

  8. Arid-zone groundwater recharge and palaeorecharge: insights from the radioisotope chlorine-36

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jacobson, G.; Wischusen, J. [Australian Geological Survey Organization (AGSO), Canberra, ACT (Australia). Geohazards, Land and Water Resources; Cresswell, R.; Fifield, K. [Australian National Univ., Canberra, ACT (Australia). Dept. of Nuclear Physics

    1998-11-01

    AGSO`s collaborative `Western water` study of groundwater resources in Aboriginal lands in the southwest Northern Territory arid zone, has applied the radioisotope {sup 36}CI and {sup 14}C to investigate the sustainability of community water supplies drawn from shallow aquifers in the Papunya-Kintore-Yuendumu area. The {sup 36}CI results have important implications for groundwater management throughout the arid zone, because substantial recharge occurs only during favourable, wet, interglacial climatic regimes. this has important implications for groundwater management in this area and elsewhere in central Australia, where most of the community water supplies depend on `old` stored groundwater 5 figs.

  9. Arid-zone groundwater recharge and palaeorecharge: insights from the radioisotope chlorine-36

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    AGSO's collaborative 'Western water' study of groundwater resources in Aboriginal lands in the southwest Northern Territory arid zone, has applied the radioisotope 36CI and 14C to investigate the sustainability of community water supplies drawn from shallow aquifers in the Papunya-Kintore-Yuendumu area. The 36CI results have important implications for groundwater management throughout the arid zone, because substantial recharge occurs only during favourable, wet, interglacial climatic regimes. this has important implications for groundwater management in this area and elsewhere in central Australia, where most of the community water supplies depend on 'old' stored groundwater

  10. A Reservoir of Natural Perchlorate in Unsaturated Zones of Arid and Semi-Arid Regions, Southwestern USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, B. A.; Stonestrom, D. A.; Anderson, T. A.; Orris, G. J.; Rajagapolan, S.; Sandvig, R. M.; Scanlon, B. R.; Walvoord, M. A.; Jackson, W.

    2006-12-01

    Natural perchlorate (ClO4-) is generally present in unsaturated zones of steppe-to-desert regions of the arid and semi-arid southwestern United States. The perchlorate is associated with atmospherically deposited chloride that has accumulated throughout the Holocene. To assess this natural reservoir, we analyzed unsaturated-zone profiles from ten sites across Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Utah for perchlorate and other anions. The sampled sites represent a wide range of precipitation (0.1 0.5 m yr-1), dominant vegetation, soil type, underlying geology, and include five distinct ecological regions: Chihuahuan, Mojave, and southern Great Basin deserts; Arizona-New Mexico semi-desert; and Texas High Plains dry steppe. Concentrations of perchlorate correlated closely with chloride and bromide. The perchlorate reservoir (up to 1 kg ha-1) is sufficiently large to impact groundwater when natural recharge during pluvial periods or induced recharge after conversion to agriculture flushes accumulated salts from the unsaturated zone. This little explored source can explain perchlorate in milk and other agricultural products far from anthropogenic contamination, and should be considered when evaluating overall exposure risk.

  11. Recommendations for computer code selection of a flow and transport code to be used in undisturbed vadose zone calculations for TWRS immobilized wastes environmental analyses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An analysis of three software proposals is performed to recommend a computer code for immobilized low activity waste flow and transport modeling. The document uses criteria restablished in HNF-1839, ''Computer Code Selection Criteria for Flow and Transport Codes to be Used in Undisturbed Vadose Zone Calculation for TWRS Environmental Analyses'' as the basis for this analysis

  12. A BENCHMARKING ANALYSIS FOR FIVE RADIONUCLIDE VADOSE ZONE MODELS (CHAIN, MULTIMED_DP, FECTUZ, HYDRUS, AND CHAIN 2D) IN SOIL SCREENING LEVEL CALCULATIONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Five radionuclide vadose zone models with different degrees of complexity (CHAIN, MULTIMED_DP, FECTUZ, HYDRUS, and CHAIN 2D) were selected for use in soil screening level (SSL) calculations. A benchmarking analysis between the models was conducted for a radionuclide (99Tc) rele...

  13. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the C Tank Farm: Borehole C4297 and RCRA Borehole 299-E27-22

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Baum, Steven R.; Parker, Kent E.; Lindberg, Michael J.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Tables 4.7 and 4.25. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in September 2006. The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities at the Hanford Site. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. tasked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area (WMA) C. This report is the first of two reports written to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physiochemical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from borehole C4297, installed adjacent to tank C-105, and from borehole 299-E27-22, installed directly north of the C Tank Farm. This report also presents the interpretation of data in the context of sediment types, the vertical extent of contamination, the migration potential of the contaminants, and the likely source of the contamination in the vadose zone below the C Tank Farm. The information presented in this report supports the WMA A-AX, C, and U field investigation report in preparation by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc.

  14. Solute transport processes in a karst vadose zone characterized by long-term tracer tests (the cave system of Postojnska Jama, Slovenia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogovsek, Janja; Petric, Metka

    2014-11-01

    The processes influencing the solute transport in the karst vadose zone were studied by long-term tracer tests with artificial tracers. The results of three successive tracer tests with different modes of injection were compared. Tracer breakthrough curves were monitored at three drips of different hydrological types inside one of the cave galleries of the system of Postojnska Jama over several years. Comparison of the results indicates the highly significant influence of preceding hydrological conditions (dry vs wet), injection mode (artificial flushing vs natural infiltration by subsequent rainfall, and on a bare rock vs on an overlying layer) and geologic heterogeneities within the vadose zone on solute transport in the karst vadose zone. Injection with artificial flushing resulted in rapid infiltration and the tracer traversed almost one hundred meters of bedrock in hours. However, the majority of tracer can be stored within less permeable parts of the vadose zone and then gradually flushed out after additional abundant and intensive precipitation in the period of several years. Long-continued sampling in each of the tests proved to be important for reliable characterization of the long-term solute transport dynamics.

  15. Water sources accessed by arid zone riparian trees in highly saline environments, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costelloe, Justin F; Payne, Emily; Woodrow, Ian E; Irvine, Elizabeth C; Western, Andrew W; Leaney, Fred W

    2008-05-01

    The flow regimes of arid zone rivers are often highly variable, and shallow groundwater in the alluvial aquifers can be very saline, thus constraining the availability and quality of the major water sources available to riparian trees-soil water, shallow groundwater and stream water. We have identified water sources and strategies used by riparian trees in more highly saline and arid conditions than previously studied for riparian trees of arid zone rivers. Our research focused on the riparian species Eucalyptus coolabah, one of the major riparian trees of ephemeral arid zone rivers in Australia. The water sources available to this riparian tree were examined using delta(18)O isotope data from xylem, soil water, groundwater and surface water. Additionally, soil chloride and matric potential data were used to infer zones of water availability for root uptake. Despite the saline conditions, the trees used a mixture of soil water and groundwater sources, but they did not use surface water directly. The study identified three strategies used to cope with typically high groundwater and soil water salinities. Firstly, the trees preferentially grow in zones of most frequent flushing by infiltrating streamflow, such as the bank-tops of channels. Secondly, the trees limit water use by having low transpiration rates. Thirdly, the trees are able to extract water at very low osmotic potentials, with water uptake continuing at chloride concentrations of at least 20,000-30,000 mg L(-1). PMID:18270743

  16. A Resolution Analysis of Two Geophysical Imaging Methods For Characterizing and Monitoring Hydrologic Conditions in the Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alumbaugh, D. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Geological Engineering Program; LaBreque, D. [Multi-Phase Technologies, LLC, Sparks, NV (United States); Brainard, J. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Hammond, G. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2006-08-02

    The objective of this research project was to analyze the resolution of two geophysical imaging techniques: electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and cross-borehole ground penetrating radar (XBGPR) for monitoring subsurface flow and transport processes within the vadose zone. This was accomplished through a coupled approach involving very fine-scale unsaturated flow forward modeling, conversion of the resultant flow and solute fields to geophysical property models, forward geophysical modeling using the property model obtained from the last step to obtain synthetic geophysical data, and finally inversion of this synthetic data. These geophysical property models were then compared to those derived from the conversion of the hydrologic forward modeling to provide an understanding of the resolution and limitations of the geophysical techniques.

  17. A comparison of the spatial distribution of vadose zone water in forested and agricultural floodplains a century after harvest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellner, Elliott; Hubbart, Jason A

    2016-01-15

    To improve quantitative understanding of the long-term impact of historic forest removal on floodplain vadose zone water regime, a study was implemented in fall 2010, in the Hinkson Creek Watershed, Missouri, USA. Automated, continuously logging capacitance-frequency probes were installed in a grid-like formation (n=6) and at depths of 15, 30, 50, 75, and 100 cm within a historic agricultural field (Ag) and a remnant bottomland hardwood forest (BHF). Data were logged at thirty minute intervals for the duration of the 2011, 2012, and 2013 hydrologic years. Results showed volumetric water content (VWC) to be significantly different between sites (pfloodplain forests for fresh water routing, water quality, and flood mitigation in mixed-land-use watersheds. PMID:26519576

  18. Measuring Spatial Variability of Vapor Flux to Characterize Vadose-zone VOC Sources: Flow-cell Experiments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mainhagu, Jon; Morrison, C.; Truex, Michael J.; Oostrom, Martinus; Brusseau, Mark

    2014-10-20

    A method termed vapor-phase tomography has recently been proposed to characterize the distribution of volatile organic contaminant mass in vadose-zone source areas, and to measure associated three-dimensional distributions of local contaminant mass discharge. The method is based on measuring the spatial variability of vapor flux, and thus inherent to its effectiveness is the premise that the magnitudes and temporal variability of vapor concentrations measured at different monitoring points within the interrogated area will be a function of the geospatial positions of the points relative to the source location. A series of flow-cell experiments was conducted to evaluate this premise. A well-defined source zone was created by injection and extraction of a non-reactive gas (SF6). Spatial and temporal concentration distributions obtained from the tests were compared to simulations produced with a mathematical model describing advective and diffusive transport. Tests were conducted to characterize both areal and vertical components of the application. Decreases in concentration over time were observed for monitoring points located on the opposite side of the source zone from the local–extraction point, whereas increases were observed for monitoring points located between the local–extraction point and the source zone. The results illustrate that comparison of temporal concentration profiles obtained at various monitoring points gives a general indication of the source location with respect to the extraction and monitoring points.

  19. T Tank Farm Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration - Vadose Zone Monitoring FY09 Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Z. F.; Strickland, Christopher E.; Field, Jim G.; Parker, Danny L.

    2010-01-01

    DOE’s Office of River Protection constructed a temporary surface barrier over a portion of the T Tank Farm as part of the T Farm Interim Surface Barrier Demonstration Project. As part of the demonstration effort, vadose zone moisture is being monitored to assess the effectiveness of the barrier at reducing soil moisture. A solar-powered system was installed to continuously monitor soil water conditions at four locations (i.e., instrument Nests A, B, C, and D) beneath the barrier and outside the barrier footprint as well as site meteorological conditions. Nest A is placed in the area outside the barrier footprint and serves as a control, providing subsurface conditions outside the influence of the surface barrier. Nest B provides subsurface measurements to assess surface-barrier edge effects. Nests C and D are used to assess changes in soil-moisture conditions beneath the interim surface barrier. Each instrument nest is composed of a capacitance probe (CP) with multiple sensors, multiple heat-dissipation units (HDUs), and a neutron probe (NP) access tube. The monitoring results in FY09 are summarized below. The solar panels functioned normally and could provide sufficient power to the instruments. The CP in Nest C after September 20, 2009, was not functional. The CP sensors in Nest B after July 13 and the 0.9-m CP sensor in Nest D before June 10 gave noisy data. Other CPs were functional normally. All the HDUs were functional normally but some pressure-head values measured by HDUs were greater than the upper measurement-limit. The higher-than-upper-limit values might be due to the very wet soil condition and/or measurement error but do not imply the malfunction of the sensors. Similar to FY07 and FY08, in FY09, the soil under natural conditions (Nest A) was generally recharged during the winter period (October-March) and discharged during the summer period (April-September). Soil water conditions above about 1.5-m to 2-m depth from all three types of measurements

  20. The ecohydrology of the soil-vegetation system restoration in arid zones: a review

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2009-01-01

    Arid zones, which cover approximately 40 percent of the earth’s land surface, support complicated and widely varied ecological systems. As such, arid zones are an important composition of the global terrestrial ecosystem, and water is the key and abiotic lim-ited factor in ecosystem-driven processes in these areas. Ecohydrology is a new cross discipline that provides, in an objective and comprehensive manner, novel ideas and approaches to the evaluation of the interaction and feedback mechanisms involved in the soil-vegetation systems in arid zones. In addition, ecohydrology provides a theoretical basis of ecological restoration that is cen-tered on vegetation construction. In this paper, long-term monitoring and local observations in the transitional belt between a de-sertified steppe and a steppified desert at the Shapotou Desert Research and Experiment Station, Tengger Desert, in northern China, were evaluated. The primary achievements and related research progress regarding ecohydrology in arid zones were analyzed and summarized, as a keystone, and the response of soil ecohydrological processes to the changes in the species composition, structure, and function of sandland vegetation was discussed. Meanwhile, the long-term ecological effects and mechanism of regulation of vegetation on soil habitat and on water-cycling were considered. As a vital participant in the ecohydrological processes of soil-vegetation systems, the studies on biological soil crusts was also summarized, and related theoretical models of restoration based on the water balance was reviewed.

  1. Using Vapor Phase Tomography to Measure the Spatial Distribution of Vapor Concentrations and Flux for Vadose-Zone VOC Sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mainhagu, J.; Brusseau, M. L. L.; Morrison, C. N.

    2015-12-01

    A test was conducted at a chlorinated-solvent contaminated site in Tucson, AZ, to evaluate the effectiveness of vapor-phase tomography (VPT) for characterizing the distribution of volatile organic contaminants (VOC) in the vadose zone. A soil vapor extraction (SVE) system has been in operation at the site since 2007. Vapor concentration and vacuum pressure were measured at four different depths in each of the four monitoring wells surrounding the extraction well. The test provided a 3D characterization of local vapor concentrations under induced-gradient conditions. Permeability data obtained from analysis of borehole logs were used along with pressure and the vapor-concentration data to determine VOC mass flux within the test domain. A region of higher mass flux was identified in the deepest interval of the S-SW section of the domain, indicating the possible location of a zone with greater contaminant mass. These results are consistent with the TCE-concentration distribution obtained from sediment coring conducted at the site. In contrast, the results of a standard soil gas survey did not indicate the presence of a zone with greater contaminant mass. These results indicate that the VPT test provided a robust characterization of VOC concentration and flux distribution at the site.

  2. Isotopic evidence of the origin of groundwater in arid zones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The contribution of different pathways of recharge to the groundwater in the Negev desert, the southern arid part of Israel, is examined by means of isotope and chemical signatures which are imprinted on the waters. In regions covered by sand dunes, with no perennial vegetation cover, it was found that evaporation amounts to about 30%, while 70% of the rain water infiltrates into the subsurface. In dune areas covered by deep-rooted vegetation, all water flowing into the subsurface may be transpired by the vegetation. In limestone areas, recharge to groundwater is of the order of 2% and is mainly through gravel-filled river beds by flood water. The water from springs and wells in the Eocene limestone terrain conserves the mean isotopic composition of rainfall, with a tendency for enrichment in the heavy isotopes. The salinity of the groundwater is a function of rock dissolution rather than of evaporation. In chalk-built terrains the water flows in solution channels developed along joints in the vicinity of river beds. The tritium content of the water points towards a 'piston-action' model of recharge by floods. A preliminary study of the isotope salinity relations in the runoff from a small watershed has shown that rains which do not pass a certain threshold (2 mm) evaporate totally. Evaporation from surface flows produced by stronger rains is small. Salinity is increased by a factor of two as a result of flushing of salts left behind by previous, totally evaporated rains. All data lead to the conclusion that in arid regions the total quantity of water in local basins is limited. However, base-level basins, such as inter-mountain basins, rift valleys, etc., form a sink into which relatively small quantities from local watersheds flow which may accumulate to substantial quantities that could be used for regional development projects. The Arava rift valley is discussed as a case study. (author)

  3. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments from C Waste Management Area: Investigation of the C-152 Transfer Line Leak

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F; Serne, R JEFFREY; Bjornstad, Bruce N; Valenta, Michelle M; Lanigan, David C; Vickerman, Tanya S; Clayton, Ray E; Geiszler, Keith N; Iovin, Cristian; Clayton, Eric T; Kutynakov, I V; Baum, Steven R; Lindberg, Michael J; Orr, Robert D

    2007-02-05

    A geologic/geochemical investigation in the vicinity of UPR-200-E-82 was performed using pairs of cone-penetrometer probe holes. A total of 41 direct-push cone-penetrometer borings (19 pairs to investigate different high moisture zones in the same sampling location and 3 individual) were advanced to characterize vadose zone moisture and the distribution of contaminants. A total of twenty sample sets, containing up to two split-spoon liners and one grab sample, were delivered to the laboratory for characterization and analysis. The samples were collected around the documented location of the C-152 pipeline leak, and created an approximately 120-ft diameter circle around the waste site. UPR-200-E-82 was a loss of approximately 2,600 gallons of Cs-137 Recovery Process feed solution containing an estimated 11,300 Ci of cesium-137 and 5 Ci of technetium-99. Several key parameters that are used to identify subsurface contamination were measured, including: water extract pH, electrical conductivity, nitrate, technetium-99, sodium, and uranium concentrations and technetium-99 and uranium concentrations in acid extracts. All of the parameters, with the exception of electrical conductivity, were elevated in at least some of the samples analyzed as part of this study. Specifically, soil pH was elevated (from 8.69 to 9.99) in five samples collected northeast and southwest of the C-152 pipeline leak. Similarly, samples collected from these same cone-pentrometer holes contained significantly more water-extractable sodium (more than 50 g/g of dry sediment), uranium (as much as 7.66E-01 g/g of dry sediment), nitrate (up to 30 g/g of dry sediment), and technetium-99 (up to 3.34 pCi/g of dry sediment). Most of the samples containing elevated concentrations of water-extractable sodium also had decreased levels of water extractable calcium and or magnesium, indicating that tank-related fluids that were high in sodium did seep into the vadose zone near these probe holes. Several of the

  4. Cave breakdown by vadose weathering.

    OpenAIRE

    Osborne R. Armstrong L.

    2002-01-01

    Vadose weathering is a significant mechanism for initiating breakdown in caves. Vadose weathering of ore bodies, mineral veins, palaeokarst deposits, non-carbonate keystones and impure, altered or fractured bedrock, which is intersected by caves, will frequently result in breakdown. Breakdown is an active, ongoing process. Breakdown occurs throughout the vadose zone, and is not restricted to large diameter passages, or to cave ceilings. The surfaces of disarticulated blocks are commonly coate...

  5. Ion association in water solution of soil and vadose zone of chestnut saline solonetz as a driver of terrestrial carbon sink

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batukaev, Abdul-Malik A.; Endovitsky, Anatoly P.; Andreev, Andrey G.; Kalinichenko, Valery P.; Minkina, Tatiana M.; Dikaev, Zaurbek S.; Mandzhieva, Saglara S.; Sushkova, Svetlana N.

    2016-03-01

    The assessment of soil and vadose zone as the drains for carbon sink and proper modeling of the effects and extremes of biogeochemical cycles in the terrestrial biosphere are the key components to understanding the carbon cycle, global climate system, and aquatic and terrestrial system uncertainties. Calcium carbonate equilibrium causes saturation of solution with CaCO3, and it determines its material composition, migration and accumulation of salts. In a solution electrically neutral ion pairs are formed: CaCO30, CaSO40, MgCO30, and MgSO40, as well as charged ion pairs CaHCO3+, MgHCO3+, NaCO3-, NaSO4-, CaOH+, and MgOH+. The calcium carbonate equilibrium algorithm, mathematical model and original software to calculate the real equilibrium forms of ions and to determine the nature of calcium carbonate balance in a solution were developed. This approach conducts the quantitative assessment of real ion forms of solution in solonetz soil and vadose zone of dry steppe taking into account the ion association at high ionic strength of saline soil solution. The concentrations of free and associated ion form were calculated according to analytical ion concentration in real solution. In the iteration procedure, the equations were used to find the following: ion material balance, a linear interpolation of equilibrium constants, a method of ionic pairs, the laws of initial concentration preservation, operating masses of equilibrium system, and the concentration constants of ion pair dissociation. The coefficient of ion association γe was determined as the ratio of ions free form to analytical content of ion γe = Cass/Can. Depending on soil and vadose zone layer, concentration and composition of solution in the ionic pair's form are 11-52 % Ca2+; 22.2-54.6 % Mg2+; 1.1-10.5 % Na+; 3.7-23.8 HCO3-, 23.3-61.6 % SO42-, and up to 85.7 % CO32-. The carbonate system of soil and vadose zone water solution helps to explain the evolution of salted soils, vadose and saturation zones, and

  6. Conceptual Models for Migration of Key Groundwater Contaminants Through the Vadose Zone and Into the Upper Unconfined Aquifer Below the B-Complex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Keller, Jason M.; Thorne, Paul D.; Lanigan, David C.; Christensen, J. N.; Thomas, Gregory S.

    2010-07-01

    The B-Complex contains 3 major crib and trench disposal sites and 3 SST farms that have released nearly 346 mega-liters of waste liquids containing the following high groundwater risk drivers: ~14,000 kg of CN, 29,000 kg of Cr, 12,000 kg of U and 145 Ci of Tc-99. After a thorough review of available vadose zone sediment and pore water, groundwater plume, field gamma logging, field electrical resistivity studies, we developed conceptual models for which facilities have been the significant sources of the contaminants in the groundwater and estimated the masses of these contaminants remaining in the vadose zone and currently present in the groundwater in comparison to the totals released. This allowed us to make mass balance calculations on how consistent our knowledge is on the current deep vadose zone and groundwater distribution of contaminants. Strengths and weaknesses of the conceptual models are discussed as well as implications on future groundwater and deep vadose zone remediation alternatives. Our hypothesized conceptual models attribute the source of all of the cyanide and most of the Tc-99 currently in the groundwater to the BY cribs. The source of the uranium is the BX-102 tank overfill event and the source of most of the chromium is the B-7-A&B and B-8 cribs. Our mass balance estimates suggest that there are much larger masses of U, CN, and Tc remaining in the deep vadose zone within ~20 ft of the water table than is currently in the groundwater plumes below the B-Complex. This hypothesis needs to be carefully considered before future remediation efforts are chosen. The masses of these groundwater risk drivers in the the groundwater plumes have been increasing over the last decade and the groundwater plumes are migrating to the northwest towards the Gable Gap. The groundwater flow rate appears to flucuate in response to seasonal changes in hydraulic gradient. The flux of contaminants out of the deep vadose zone from the three proposed sources also

  7. Scale-Up Information for Gas-Phase Ammonia Treatment of Uranium in the Vadose Zone at the Hanford Site Central Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Szecsody, James E.; Zhong, Lirong; Thomle, Jonathan N.; Johnson, Timothy C.

    2014-09-01

    Uranium is present in the vadose zone at the Hanford Central Plateau and is of concern for protection of groundwater. The Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test Plan for the Hanford Central Plateau identified gas-phase treatment and geochemical manipulation as potentially effective treatment approaches for uranium and technetium in the Hanford Central Plateau vadose zone. Based on laboratory evaluation, use of ammonia vapor was selected as the most promising uranium treatment candidate for further development and field testing. While laboratory tests have shown that ammonia treatment effectively reduces the mobility of uranium, additional information is needed to enable deployment of this technology for remediation. Of importance for field applications are aspects of the technology associated with effective distribution of ammonia to a targeted treatment zone, understanding the fate of injected ammonia and its impact on subsurface conditions, and identifying effective monitoring approaches. In addition, information is needed to select equipment and operational parameters for a field design. As part of development efforts for the ammonia technology for remediation of vadose zone uranium contamination, field scale-up issues were identified and have been addressed through a series of laboratory and modeling efforts. This report presents a conceptual description for field application of the ammonia treatment process, engineering calculations to support treatment design, ammonia transport information, field application monitoring approaches, and a discussion of processes affecting the fate of ammonia in the subsurface. The report compiles this information from previous publications and from recent research and development activities. The intent of this report is to provide technical information about these scale-up elements to support the design and operation of a field test for the ammonia treatment technology.

  8. Perched-Water Evaluation for the Deep Vadose Zone Beneath the B, BX, and BY Tank Farms Area of the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Truex, Michael J.; Oostrom, Martinus; Carroll, KC; Chronister, Glen B.

    2013-06-28

    Perched-water conditions have been observed in the vadose zone above a fine-grained zone that is located a few meters above the water table within the B, BX, and BY Tank Farms area. The perched water contains elevated concentrations of uranium and technetium-99. This perched-water zone is important to consider in evaluating the future flux of contaminated water into the groundwater. The study described in this report was conducted to examine the perched-water conditions and quantitatively evaluate 1) factors that control perching behavior, 2) contaminant flux toward groundwater, and 3) associated groundwater impact.

  9. Bayesian Markov-Chain-Monte-Carlo inversion of time-lapse crosshole GPR data to characterize the vadose zone at the Arrenaes Site, Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Scholer, Marie; Irving, James; Zibar, Majken Caroline Looms;

    2012-01-01

    -chain-Monte-Carlo inversion approach with different priors. The ground-penetrating radar (GPR) geophysical method has the potential to provide valuable information on the hydraulic properties of the vadose zone because of its strong sensitivity to soil water content. In particular, recent evidence has suggested that the......We examined to what extent time-lapse crosshole ground-penetrating radar traveltimes, measured during a forced infiltration experiment at the Arreneas field site in Denmark, could help to quantify vadose zone hydraulic properties and their corresponding uncertainties using a Bayesian Markov......-state infiltration conditions, which represent only a small fraction of practically relevant scenarios. We explored in detail the dynamic infiltration case, specifically examining to what extent time-lapse crosshole GPR traveltimes, measured during a forced infiltration experiment at the Arreneas field site in...

  10. Characterization and Extraction of Uranium Contamination Perched within the Deep Vadose Zone at the Hanford Site, Washington State

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, B. A.; Rohay, V. J.; Benecke, M. W.; Chronister, G. B.; Doornbos, M. H.; Morse, J.

    2012-12-01

    A highly contaminated perched water zone has been discovered in the deep vadose zone above the unconfined aquifer during drilling of wells to characterize groundwater contamination within the 200 East Area of the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site in southeast Washington. The perched water, which contains nitrate, uranium, and technetium-99 at concentrations that have exceeded 100,000 μg/L, 70,000 μg/L, and 45,000 pCi/L respectively, is providing contamination to the underlying unconfined aquifer. A perched zone extraction well has been installed and is successfully recovering the contaminated perched water as an early remedial measure to reduce impacts to the unconfined aquifer. The integration and interpretation of various borehole hydrogeologic, geochemical, and geophysical data sets obtained during drilling facilitated the delineation of the perching horizon and determination of the nature and extent of the perched contamination. Integration of the borehole geologic and geophysical logs defined the structural elevation and thickness of the perching low permeability silt interval. Borehole geophysical moisture logs, gamma logs, and sample data allowed detailed determination of the elevation and thickness of the oversaturated zone above the perching horizon, and the extent and magnitude of the radiological uranium contamination within the perching interval. Together, these data sets resolved the nature of the perching horizon and the location and extent of the contaminated perched water within the perching zone, allowing an estimation of remaining contaminant extent. The resulting conceptual model indicates that the contaminated perched water is contained within a localized sand lens deposited in a structural low on top of a semi-regional low-permeability silt layer. The top of the sand lens is approximately 72 m (235 ft) below ground surface; the maximum thickness of the sand lens is approximately 3 m (10 ft). The lateral and vertical extent of the

  11. Semi-arid zone caves: Evaporation and hydrological controls on δ18O drip water composition and implications for speleothem paleoclimate reconstructions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markowska, Monika; Baker, Andy; Andersen, Martin S.; Jex, Catherine N.; Cuthbert, Mark O.; Rau, Gabriel C.; Graham, Peter W.; Rutlidge, Helen; Mariethoz, Gregoire; Marjo, Christopher E.; Treble, Pauline C.; Edwards, Nerilee

    2016-01-01

    Oxygen isotope ratios in speleothems may be affected by external processes that are independent of climate, such as karst hydrology and kinetic fractionation. Consequently, there has been a shift towards characterising and understanding these processes through cave monitoring studies, particularly focussing on temperate zones where precipitation exceeds evapotranspiration. Here, we investigate oxygen isotope systematics at Wellington Caves in semi-arid, SE Australia, where evapotranspiration exceeds precipitation. We use a novel D2O isotopic tracer in a series of artificial irrigations, supplemented by pre-irrigation data comprised four years of drip monitoring and three years of stable isotope analysis of both drip waters and rainfall. This study reveals that: (1) evaporative processes in the unsaturated zone dominate the isotopic composition of drip waters; (2) significant soil zone 'wetting up' is required to overcome soil moisture deficits in order to achieve infiltration, which is highly dependent on antecedent hydro-climatic conditions; (3) lateral flow, preferential flow and sorption in the soil zone are important in redistributing subsurface zone water; (4) isotopic breakthrough curves suggest clear evidence of piston-flow at some drip sites where an older front of water discharged prior to artificial irrigation water; and (5) water residence times in a shallow vadose zone (recharge, rather than paleo-rainfall e.g. the amount effect or mean annual. Speleothem-forming drip waters will be dominated by evaporative enrichment, up to ˜3‰ in the context of this study, relative to precipitation-weighted mean annual rainfall. The oxygen isotope variability of such coeval records may further be influenced by flow path and storage in the unsaturated zone that is not only drip specific but also influenced by internal cave climatic conditions, which may vary spatially in the cave.

  12. A hybrid hydrologic-geophysical inverse technique for the assessment and monitoring of leachates in the vadose zone. 1998 annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    'The objective of this study is to develop and field test a new, integrated Hybrid Hydrologic-Geophysical Inverse Technique (HHGIT) for characterization of the vadose zone at contaminated sites. This new approach to site characterization and monitoring can provide detailed maps of hydrogeological heterogeneity and the extent of contamination by combining information from electric resistivity tomography (ERT) surveys, statistical information about heterogeneity and hydrologic processes, and sparse hydrologic data. Because the electrical conductivity of the vadose zone (from the ERT measurements) can be correlated to the fluid saturation and/or contaminant concentration, the hydrologic and geophysical measurements are related. As of the 21st month of a 36-month project, a three-dimensional stochastic hydrologic inverse model for heterogeneous vadose zones has been developed. This model employs pressure and moisture content measurements under both transient and steady flow conditions to estimate unsaturated hydraulic parameters. In this model, an innovative approach to sequentially condition the estimate using temporal measurements has been incorporated. This allows us to use vast amounts of pressure and moisture content information measured at different times while keeping the computational effort manageable. Using this model the authors have found that the relative importance of the pressure and moisture content measurements in defining the different vadose zone parameters depends on whether the soil is wet or dry. They have also learned that pressure and moisture content measurements collected during steady state flow provide the best characterization of heterogeneity compared to other types of hydrologic data. These findings provide important guidance to the design of sampling scheme of the field experiment described below.'

  13. Development of a Conceptual Model for Vadose Zone Transport of Tc-99 at Hanford's BC Cribs and the Screening of Remedial Alternatives

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A number of waste trenches and cribs at Hanford's BC Cribs and Trenches site, which received about 10 Mgal of scavenged tank waste with elevated concentrations of technetium-99 and nitrate, are being evaluated for remediation. The objectives of this study were to: 1) develop a conceptual model for vadose zone transport of mobile contaminants, and 2) investigate the effects of fine-scale heterogeneity (i.e. horizontal laminations, cross-bedding) on the large-scale transport behavior with the goal of developing an appropriate remedial strategy. The vertical heterogeneity structure, conditioned on grain size distributions and borehole geophysical logs (water content and natural isotopes), was developed from a single borehole at the site. Geostatistical methods were used to impose a 3-D spatial correlation structure, using information from an adjacent well-characterized experimental site, and to merge heterogeneities at various scales. Flow and transport properties were derived using property transfer models based on grain size distributions. The STOMP simulator was used to predict flow and transport through the vadose zone and into a 5-m thick confined aquifer during the period of trench operations (1956-1958) through to the present time. Results show that fine-scale heterogeneity within the large-scale lithologic units enhanced lateral flow and mixing, limited vertical penetration in the vadose zone, and played a critical role in keeping contaminants above the water table. Model results show good agreement with a contaminant profile from a borehole installed in the 216-B-26 trench. Simulated distributions of nitrate and electrical resistivity are also in good agreement with the results of a field-scale resistivity survey. These results suggest that installation of an engineered surface barrier would reduce the threat to ground water by reducing the mass flux of contaminants to the water table and increasing the residence time in the vadose zone. (authors)

  14. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the T Tank Farm: Boreholes C4104, C4105, 299-W10-196, and RCRA Borehole 299-W11-39

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Baum, Steven R.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Orr, Robert D.; Brown, Christopher F.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Tables 4.8, 4.28, and 4.52. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in September 2004. The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities at Hanford. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. tasked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area (WMA) T-TX-TY. This report is the second of two reports written to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from boreholes C4104 and C4105 in the T Tank Farm, and from borehole 299-W-11-39 installed northeast of the T Tank Farm. Finally, the measurements on sediments from borehole C4104 are compared with a nearby borehole drilled in 1993, 299- W10-196, through the tank T-106 leak plume.

  15. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Borehole 299-E33-46 Near B 110 in the B BX-BY Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Gee, Glendon W.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lanigan, David C.; mccain, r. G.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Orr, Robert D.; Legore, Virginia L.; Clayton, Ray E.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Kutynakov, I. V.; Baum, Steven R.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Royack, Lisa J.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-ectractable sodium data from Table 4.17. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in December 2002. The overall goal of the of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., asked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediment from within the B-BX-BY Waste Management Area. This report is the third in a series of three reports to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from a borehole installed approximately 4.5 m (15 ft) northeast of tank B- 110 (borehole 299-E33-46).

  16. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the TX Tank Farm: Boreholes C3830, C3831, C3832 and RCRA Borehole 299-W10-27

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; Orr, Robert D.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Tables 4.8, 4.28,4.43, and 4.59. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in April 2004. The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities at Hanford. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. tasked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area (WMA) T-TX-TY. This report is the first of two reports written to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from boreholes C3830, C3831, and C3832 in the TX Tank Farm, and from borehole 299-W-10-27 installed northeast of the TY Tank Farm.

  17. Groundwater response to leakage of surface water through a thick vadose zone in the middle reaches area of Heihe River Basin, in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X.-S. Wang

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The behavior of groundwater response to leakage of surface water in the middle reaches area of Heihe River Basin is significantly influenced by a thick vadose zone. The groundwater regime is a result of two recharge events due to leakage of Heihe River and irrigation water with different delay time. A nonlinear leakage model is developed to calculate the monthly leakage of Heihe River in considering changes of streamflow, river stage and agricultural water utilization. Numerical modeling of variable saturated flow is carried out to investigate the general behaviors of leakage-recharge conversion through a thick vadose zone. It is found that the recharge pattern can be approximated by simple reservoir models of leakages under a river and under an irrigation district with different delay-time and recession coefficient. A triple-reservoir model of relationship between surface water, vadose zone and groundwater is developed. It reproduces the groundwater regime during 1989–2006 with variable streamflow of Heihe River and agricultural water utilization. The model is applied to interpret changes of groundwater level during 2007–2008 that observed in the Watershed Airborne Telemetry Experimental Research (WATER.

  18. Groundwater response to leakage of surface water through a thick vadose zone in the middle reaches area of Heihe River Basin, in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X.-S. Wang

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The behavior of groundwater response to leakage of surface water in the middle reaches area of Heihe River Basin is significantly influenced by a thick vadose zone. The variation of groundwater level is a result of two recharge events corresponding to leakage of Heihe River and irrigation water with different delay time. A nonlinear leakage model is developed to calculate the monthly leakage of Heihe River in considering changes of streamflow, river stage and agricultural water utilization. Numerical modeling of variable saturated flow is carried out to investigate the general behaviors of leakage-recharge conversion through a thick vadose zone. It is found that the variable recharge can be approximated by simple reservoir models for both leakage under a river and leakage under an irrigation district but with different delay-time and recession coefficient. A triple-reservoir model of relationship between surface water, vadose zone and groundwater is developed. It reproduces the in situ water table movement during 1989–2006 with variable streamflow of Heihe River and agricultural water utilization. The model is applied to interpret groundwater dynamics during 2007–2008 that observed in the Watershed Airborne Telemetry Experimental Research (WATER.

  19. Microbial colonisation of chasmoendolithic habitats in the hyper-arid zone of the Atacama Desert

    OpenAIRE

    Diruggiero, J.; J. Wierzchos; C. K. Robinson; Souterre, T.; J. Ravel; Artieda, O.; V. Souza-Egipsy; C. Ascaso

    2013-01-01

    Efforts in searching for microbial life in the driest part of Atacama Desert, Chile, revealed a small number of lithic habitats that can be considered as environmental refuges for life. In this study, we describe for the first time chasmoendolithic colonisation of fissures and cracks of rhyolite-gypsum and calcite rocks collected in the hyper-arid zone of the desert. The use of high-throughput sequencing revealed that the Atacama rock communities comprised a few dominant phylotypes and a numb...

  20. Spectroscopic and Microscopic Characterization of Contaminant Uptake and Retention by Carbonates in the Soil and Vadose Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richard J. Reeder; Nicholas S. Fisher; Wayne P. Hess; Kenneth M. Beck

    2003-04-15

    The research focus of this previous EMSP grant was assessment of the role that carbonate minerals play in the uptake and sequestration of metal and radionuclide contaminants in soils and the vadose zone for conditions relevant to the Hanford Site and other sites in the DOE Complex. The project was a collaboration among researchers at SUNY-Stony Brook and EMSL/PNNL. Carbonates, particularly calcite, are present in the Hanford subsurface as grain coatings, disseminated particles, and dense caliche layers. Calcite is also predicted to be forming beneath leaking tanks. A range of metal and radionuclide species that pose risks at Hanford and othe DOE istes were considered, including u(VI), Cr(CV), Cs, Pb(II), and selected lanthanides (as models for trivalent actinides). Batch sorption and co-precipitation experiments of these metals with pre-equilibrated calcite and selected uptake experiments on natural caliche formed the basis to determine the mechanisms of metal/radionuclide binding and to assess the effect on the stability of the sorbed species and the potential for remobilization. Our results provide ne information that can benefit DOE clean-up methodology and potentially provide new approaches for uptake of selected heavy metals

  1. Natural attentuation of tritium in vadose zone moisture and ground water at a Lawrence Livermore site in Northern California, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tritium used in explosives experiments and buried in unlined landfills at a remote Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) site has resulted in three ground water tritium plumes. Using an innovative approach, we determined that despite ground water tritium activities of up to 1.5 million picoCuries per liter (pCi/L) in some locations, natural attenuation processes are significantly limiting the migration of tritium to environmental receptors. We used soil vapor and moisture tritium activity measurements to calculate the source inventory of tritium in the vadose zone. We determined the 12 year annual inventory of tritium in ground water, using objective tritium activity contours and the highly variable saturated thickness of the aquifer. Our analysis indicates that despite seasonal slug releases of tritium, the two plumes emanating from two landfills are stable, with the 1,000 and 20,000 pCi/L contours essentially fixed in space. The third plume emanates continuously from an explosives testing platform; the 1,000 pCi/L contour is translating slightly, but the 20,000 pCi/L contour is retreating upgradient towards the source. Additionally, the long-term trend in total tritium activity for each plume is decreasing. Three processes account for the attenuation of tritium observed: 1) radioactive decay, 2) hydrodynamic dispersion, and 3) dwindling tritium sources. In preparation for the possibility that remediation may be required anyway, we have evaluated innovative remediation technologies for tritium at this site

  2. Poly-use multi-level sampling system for soil-gas transport analysis in the vadose zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nauer, Philipp A; Chiri, Eleonora; Schroth, Martin H

    2013-10-01

    Soil-gas turnover is important in the global cycling of greenhouse gases. The analysis of soil-gas profiles provides quantitative information on below-ground turnover and fluxes. We developed a poly-use multi-level sampling system (PMLS) for soil-gas sampling, water-content and temperature measurement with high depth resolution and minimal soil disturbance. It is based on perforated access tubes (ATs) permanently installed in the soil. A multi-level sampler allows extraction of soil-gas samples from 20 locations within 1 m depth, while a capacitance probe is used to measure volumetric water contents. During idle times, the ATs are sealed and can be equipped with temperature sensors. Proof-of-concept experiments in a field lysimeter showed good agreement of soil-gas samples and water-content measurements compared with conventional techniques, while a successfully performed gas-tracer test demonstrated the feasibility of the PMLS to determine soil-gas diffusion coefficients in situ. A field application of the PMLS to quantify oxidation of atmospheric CH4 in a field lysimeter and in the forefield of a receding glacier yielded activity coefficients and soil-atmosphere fluxes well in agreement with previous studies. With numerous options for customization, the presented tool extends the methodological choices to investigate soil-gas transport in the vadose zone. PMID:23962070

  3. Estimating flow parameters using ground-penetrating radar and hydrological data during transient flow in the vadose zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kowalsky, Michael; Finsterle, Stefan; Rubin, Yoram

    2003-05-12

    Methods for determining the parameters necessary for modeling fluid flow and contaminant transport in the shallow subsurface are in great demand. Soil properties such as permeability, porosity, and water retention are typically estimated through the inversion of hydrological data (e.g., measurements of capillary pressure and water saturation). However, ill-posedness and non-uniqueness commonly arise in such inverse problems making their solutions elusive. Incorporating additional types of data, such as from geophysical methods, may greatly improve the success of inverse modeling. In particular, ground-penetrating radar (GPR) has proven sensitive to subsurface fluid flow processes. In the present work, an inverse technique is presented in which permeability distributions are generated conditional to time-lapsed GPR measurements and hydrological data collected during a transient flow experiment. Specifically, a modified pilot point framework has been implemented in iTOUGH2 allowing for the generation of permeability distributions that preserve point measurements and spatial correlation patterns while reproducing geophysical and hydrological measurements. Through a numerical example, we examine the performance of this method and the benefit of including synthetic GPR data while inverting for fluid flow parameters in the vadose zone. Our hypothesis is that within the inversion framework that we describe, our ability to predict flow across control planes greatly improves with the use of both transient hydrological measurements and geophysical measurements (GPR-derived estimates of water saturation, in particular).

  4. Experimental Plan: 300 Area Treatability Test: In Situ Treatment of the Vadose Zone and Smear Zone Uranium Contamination by Polyphosphate Infiltration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Pierce, Eric M.; Oostrom, Mart; Fruchter, Jonathan S.

    2007-08-31

    The overall objectives of the treatability test is to evaluate and optimize polyphosphate remediation technology for infiltration either from ground surface, or some depth of excavation, providing direct stabilization of uranium within the deep vadose and capillary fringe above the 300 Area aquifer. Expected result from this experimental plan is a data package that includes: 1) quantification of the retardation of polyphosphate, 2) the rate of degradation and the retardation of degradation products as a function of water content, 3) an understanding of the mechanism of autunite formation via the reaction of solid phase calcite-bound uranium and aqueous polyphosphate remediation technology, 4) an understanding of the transformation mechanism, identity of secondary phases, and the kinetics of the reaction between uranyl-carbonate and –silicate minerals with the polyphosphate remedy under solubility-limiting conditions, 5) quantification of the extent and rate of uranium released and immobilized based on the infiltration rate of the polyphosphate remedy and the effect of and periodic wet-dry cycling on the efficacy of polyphosphate remediation for uranium in the vadose zone and capillary fringe, and 6) quantification of reliable equilibrium solubility values for autunite under hydraulically unsaturated conditions allowing accurate prediction of the long-term stability of autunite. Moreover, results of intermediate scale testing will quantify the transport of polyphosphate and degradation products, and yield degradation rates, at a scale that is bridging the gap between the small-scale UFA studies and the field scale. These results will be used to test and verify a site-specific, variable saturation, reactive transport model and to aid in the design of a pilot-scale field test of this technology. In particular, the infiltration approach and monitoring strategy of the pilot test would be primarily based on results from intermediate-scale testing. Results from this

  5. Factors Effecting the Fate and Transport of CL-20 in the Vadose Zone and Groundwater: Final Report 2002 - 2004 SERDP Project CP-1255

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szecsody, James E.; Riley, Robert G.; Devary, Brooks J.; Girvin, Donald C.; Resch, Charles T.; Campbell, James A.; Fredrickson, Herbert L.; Thompson, Karen T.; Crocker, Fiona H.; Qasim, Mohammad M.; Gamerdinger, Amy P.; Lemond, Luke A.

    2005-06-01

    This SERDP-funded project was initiated to investigate the fate of CL-20 in the subsurface environment, with a focus on identification and quantification of geochemical and microbial reactions of CL-20. CL-20 can be released to the surface and subsurface terrestrial environment by: a) manufacturing processes, b) munition storage, and c) use with low order detonation or unexploded ordnance. The risk of far-field subsurface migration was assessed through labora-tory experiments with a variety of sediments and subsurface materials to quantify processes that control CL-20 sorption-limited migration and degradation. Results of this study show that CL-20 will exhibit differing behavior in the subsurface terrestrial environment: 1. CL-20 on the sediment surface will photodegrade and interact with plants/animals (described in other SERDP projects CU 1254, 1256). CL-20 will exhibit greater sorption in humid sediments to organic matter. Transport will be solubility limited (i.e., low CL-20 aqueous solubility). 2. CL-20 infiltration into soils (<2 m) from spills will be subject to sorption to soil organic matter (if present), and low to high biodegradation rates (weeks to years) depending on the microbial population (greater in humid environment). 3. CL-20 in the vadose zone (>2 m) will be, in most cases, subject to low sorption and low degradation rates, so would persist in the subsurface environment and be at risk for deep migration. Low water content in arid regions will result in a decrease in both sorption and the degradation rate. Measured degradation rates in unsaturated sediments of years would result in significant subsurface migration distances. 4. CL-20 in groundwater will be subject to some sorption but likely very slow degradation rates. CL-20 sorption will be greater than RDX. Most CL-20 degradation will be abiotic (ferrous iron and other transition metals), because most deep subsurface systems have extremely low natural microbial populations. Degradation rates

  6. Arthropods in Natural Communities in Mescal Agave (Agave durangensis Gentry) in an Arid Zone

    OpenAIRE

    Maria P. Gonzalez-Castillo; Manuel Q. Escalante; Gabriela Castano-Meneses

    2011-01-01

    Problem statement: The arthropods have a very important role in the arid zones due to their interactions with many organism and because they constituted an important element in the structure of the plant community. Nevertheless their importance there are few knowledge about the community of arthropods associated to vegetation in arid zones in the North of Mexico. The present study had the objective of determining the abundance, richness and diversity of arthropods in three localities where th...

  7. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the TX Tank Farm: Probe Holes C3830, C3831, C3832 and 299-W10-27

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R JEFFREY.; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; LeGore, Virginia L.; Orr, Robert D.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.

    2004-04-01

    Pacific Northwest National Laboratory performed detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area T-TX-TY. This report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from three probe holes (C3830, C3831, and C3832) in the TX Tank Farm, and from borehole 299-W-10-27. Sediments from borehole 299-W-10-27 are considered to be uncontaminated sediments that can be compared with contaminated sediments. This report also presents our interpretation of the sediment lithologies, the vertical extent of contamination, the migration potential of the contaminants, and the likely source of the contamination in the vadose zone and groundwater below the TX Tank Farm. Sediment from the probe holes was analyzed for: moisture, radionuclide and carbon contents;, one-to-one water extracts (soil pH, electrical conductivity, cation, trace metal, and anion data), and 8 M nitric acid extracts. Overall, our analyses showed that common ion exchange is a key mechanism that influences the distribution of contaminants within that portion of the vadose zone affected by tank liquor. We did not observe significant indications of caustic alteration of the sediment mineralogy or porosity, or significant zones of slightly elevated pH values in the probe holes. The sediments do show that sodium-, nitrate-, and sulfate-dominated fluids are present. The fluids are more dilute than tank fluids observed below tanks at the SX and BX Tank Farms. Three primary stratigraphic units were encountered in each probe hole: (1) backfill material, (2) the Hanford formation, and (3) the Cold Creek unit. Each of the probe holes contain thin fine-grained layers in the Hanford H2 stratigraphic unit that may impact the flow of leaked fluids and effect irregular and horizontal flow. The probe holes could not penetrate below the enriched calcium carbonate strata of the Cold Creek lower subunit; therefore, we did not

  8. Soil Moisture Monitoring Network Using Multi-Sensor Capacitance Probes in a Thick Vadose Zone Under Riparian Vegetation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solis, J. A.; Rajaram, H.

    2011-12-01

    Soil moisture profile measurements are an integral component of water balance estimation networks, especially in thick vadose zones and fine-grained soil environments. At field sites with silty and stiff clayey soils, installation of sensors at multiple depths poses a challenge. One approach that has gained popularity is a multi-sensor capacitance (EniroSCAN) probe system manufactured by Sentek technologies. This requires only a single borehole where a 56.5 mm PVC access tube is installed. A very attractive feature of this system is that the sensors can be positioned at different depths without having to disturb the soil since the sensors are located on a cartridge unit that rides within the access tube and can be moved in 10 cm increments. We report the design and installation of a distributed soil moisture sensor network in a riparian zone within the Whitewater Basin in Central Kansas. The soil-moisture monitoring network used in this study is compromised of 6 profilers (each covering a depth of 2 m) with 4-5 sensors per profile, located at different depths. The network is connected to a centralized data logger, from which it can be accessed remotely through a telemetry system in real-time. The network obtains distributed soil moisture measurements every 15 minutes. All profilers exhibit a rapid response to precipitation events at depths HYPROP system manufactured by UMS (Umewlt Measurement Systeme). This system determines both soil water retention and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity curves. Significant heterogeneity in unsaturated soil properties is indicated from measurements on soils at different depths and locations. The soil moisture measurements and soil properties are being used for water budget estimation at the site across a range of time scales.

  9. Radiocarbon evidence for decomposition of aged organic matter in the vadose zone as the main source of speleothem carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noronha, Alexandra L.; Johnson, Kathleen R.; Southon, John R.; Hu, Chaoyong; Ruan, Jiaoyang; McCabe-Glynn, Staryl

    2015-11-01

    Several recent studies have used records of the radiocarbon (14C) bomb peak in speleothems to inversely model the soil a14CO2 and the age distribution of soil organic material (SOM) above caves, in part to investigate the potential of speleothems as sensitive records of past SOM dynamics. The results of these modeling studies have suggested that soil CO2 at karst sites is derived primarily from the decomposition of SOM with turnover times on the order of decades to centuries. This result is in stark contrast with observations of soil a14CO2 at non-karst sites, which indicate that soil CO2 is derived primarily from root respiration and decomposition of SOM with much shorter turnover times. This discrepancy suggests that SOM in karst settings may have a very different age distribution than sites that have been studied previously and/or that soil CO2 is not the main source of speleothem carbon. To help resolve this discrepancy, we present an improved inverse model which we use to estimate the age of CO2 above several caves. We also present results from a detailed case study of soil carbon dynamics at Heshang Cave, China. This work demonstrates that SOM in karst sites may be much older than SOM in non-karst soils that have been studied previously, but that CO2 produced in the shallow soil zone is unlikely to be the main source of speleothem carbon. A review of the literature suggests that the most likely explanation for the aforementioned discrepancy is that decomposition of down-washed SOM in the vadose zone is the dominant source of speleothem carbon.

  10. A geochemical and isotopic approach to recharge evaluation in semi-arid zones. Past and present

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The magnitude of any recharge to aquifers in semi-arid and arid zones is the principal uncertainty in estimating a water balance. Recent studies in Cyprus and Libyan Arab Jamahiriya are currently being used to demonstrate the application of geochemical and isotopic techniques, to the determination of both current and palaeo-recharge. In Cyprus, solute profiles of the unsaturated zone have been interpreted to provide estimates of the direct recharge component using a steady-state, mass-balance approach; results from the chloride profiles compare well with recharge estimates using tritium. In addition, it is found that some solute peaks, notably for specific electrical conductance, give a reasonably accurate record of the rainfall history during the period 1950-1975. The solute profile method is relatively unsophisticated and could be more widely applied to recharge estimation in other semi-arid areas of the world. In Libya, a clear distinction can be made using the combined isotopic, hydrological and geochemical results between regional groundwaters recharged to the upper, unconfined aquifer of the Sirte Basin before 13,000 years BP and younger waters recharged locally during the period 5000-7800 years BP. A well-defined fresh-water channel, superimposed upon the regional water quality pattern, can be traced within the aquifer for some 130 km and represents direct evidence of recharge during the Holocene. Some shallow groundwaters of similar composition to the fresh-water channel are also considered to represent recent, if intermittent, recharge which took place during historical times. It is concluded that geochemical and isotopic studies of both the unsaturated zone and of shallow groundwaters in semi-arid regions, can be used to determine not only the present-day direct recharge component, but also a recharge chronology of immediate historic times, which may be important in the estimation of long-term water resources. (author)

  11. Quasi 3D modeling of water flow in vadose zone and groundwater

    Science.gov (United States)

    The complexity of subsurface flow systems calls for a variety of concepts leading to the multiplicity of simplified flow models. One habitual simplification is based on the assumption that lateral flow and transport in unsaturated zone are not significant unless the capillary fringe is involved. In ...

  12. Remediation of Uranium in the Hanford Vadose Zone Using Gas-Transported Reactants: Laboratory Scale Experiments in Support of the Deep Vadose Zone Treatability Test Plan for the Hanford Central Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szecsody, James E.; Truex, Michael J.; Zhong, Lirong; Williams, Mark D.; Resch, Charles T.; McKinley, James P.

    2010-01-04

    This laboratory-scale investigation is focused on decreasing mobility of uranium in subsurface contaminated sediments in the vadose zone by in situ geochemical manipulation at low water content. This geochemical manipulation of the sediment surface phases included reduction, pH change (acidic and alkaline), and additions of chemicals (phosphate, ferric iron) to form specific precipitates. Reactants were advected into 1-D columns packed with Hanford 200 area U-contaminated sediment as a reactive gas (for CO2, NH3, H2S, SO2), with a 0.1% water content mist (for NaOH, Fe(III), HCl, PO4) and with a 1% water content foam (for PO4). Uranium is present in the sediment in multiple phases that include (in decreasing mobility): aqueous U(VI) complexes, adsorbed U, reduced U(IV) precipitates, rind-carbonates, total carbonates, oxides, silicates, phosphates, and in vanadate minerals. Geochemical changes were evaluated in the ability to change the mixture of surface U phases to less mobile forms, as defined by a series of liquid extractions that dissolve progressively less soluble phases. Although liquid extractions provide some useful information as to the generalized uranium surface phases (and are considered operational definitions of extracted phases), positive identification (by x-ray diffraction, electron microprobe, other techniques) was also used to positively identify U phases and effects of treatment. Some of the changes in U mobility directly involve U phases, whereas other changes result in precipitate coatings on U surface phases. The long-term implication of the U surface phase changes to alter U mass mobility in the vadose zone was then investigated using simulations of 1-D infiltration and downward migration of six U phases to the water table. In terms of the short-term decrease in U mobility (in decreasing order), NH3, NaOH mist, CO2, HCl mist, and Fe(III) mist showed 20% to 35% change in U surface phases. Phosphate addition (mist or foam advected) showed

  13. Tracing long-term vadose zone processes at the Nevada Test Site, USA

    OpenAIRE

    Hunt, James R.; Tompson, Andrew F. B.

    2005-01-01

    The nuclear weapons testing programme of the USA has released radionuclides to the subsurface at the Nevada Test Site. One of these tests has been used to study the hydrological transport of radionuclides for over 25 years in groundwater and the deep unsaturated zone. Ten years after the weapon’s test, a 16 year groundwater pumping experiment was initiated to study the mobility of radionuclides from that test in an alluvial aquifer. The continuously pumped groundwater was released into an unl...

  14. Diffusive transport and evaporation to the atmosphere from a NAPL source in the vadose zone

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holtegaard, L.E.; Bjerre, T.; Christophersen, Mette;

    2002-01-01

    To evaluate the risks concerned with the presence of volatile organic compounds in the unsaturated zone it is important to know how the compounds are transported in the soil. In this project the effective diffusion coefficient of 3-methylpentane, hexane, methyl-cyclopentane, iso-octane and methyl-cyclo-hexane...... has been measured in-situ using a diffusive tracer test (DTT). Furthermore the flux from a NAPL source has been measured in flux chambers. From these results the effective diffusion coefficient has been calculated for CFC113, methyl-cyclo-pentane, benzene, iso-octane, and methyl-cyclo-hexane, but...

  15. Enhanced biogeochemical cycling and subsequent reduction of hydraulic conductivity associated with soil-layer interfaces in the vadose zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, David J; McGuire, Jennifer T; Mohanty, Binayak P

    2011-01-01

    Biogeochemical dynamics in the vadose zone are poorly understood due to the transient nature of chemical and hydrologic conditions but are nonetheless critical to understanding chemical fate and transport. This study explored the effects of a soil layer on linked geochemical, hydrological, and microbiological processes. Three laboratory soil columns were constructed: a homogenized medium-grained sand, a homogenized organic-rich loam, and a sand-over-loam layered column. Upward and downward infiltration of water was evaluated during experiments to simulate rising water table and rainfall events, respectively. In situ collocated probes measured soil water content, matric potential, and Eh. Water samples collected from the same locations were analyzed for Br, Cl, NO, SO, NH, Fe, and total sulfide. Compared with homogeneous columns, the presence of a soil layer altered the biogeochemistry and water flow of the system considerably. Enhanced biogeochemical cycling was observed in the layered column over the texturally homogeneous soil columns. Enumerations of iron- and sulfate-reducing bacteria showed 1 to 2 orders of magnitude greater community numbers in the layered column. Mineral and soil aggregate composites were most abundant near the soil-layer interface, the presence of which likely contributed to an observed order-of-magnitude decrease in hydraulic conductivity. These findings show that quantifying coupled hydrologic-biogeochemical processes occurring at small-scale soil interfaces is critical to accurately describing and predicting chemical changes at the larger system scale. These findings also provide justification for considering soil layering in contaminant fate and transport models because of its potential to increase biodegradation or to slow the rate of transport of contaminants. PMID:22031578

  16. Remediation of Uranium in the Hanford Vadose Zone Using Ammonia Gas: FY 2010 Laboratory-Scale Experiments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szecsody, James E.; Truex, Michael J.; Zhong, Lirong; Qafoku, Nikolla; Williams, Mark D.; McKinley, James P.; Wang, Zheming; Bargar, John; Faurie, Danielle K.; Resch, Charles T.; Phillips, Jerry L.

    2010-12-01

    This investigation is focused on refining an in situ technology for vadose zone remediation of uranium by the addition of ammonia (NH3) gas. Objectives are to: a) refine the technique of ammonia gas treatment of low water content sediments to minimize uranium mobility by changing uranium surface phases (or coat surface phases), b) identify the geochemical changes in uranium surface phases during ammonia gas treatment, c) identify broader geochemical changes that occur in sediment during ammonia gas treatment, and d) predict and test injection of ammonia gas for intermediate-scale systems to identify process interactions that occur at a larger scale and could impact field scale implementation.Overall, NH3 gas treatment of low-water content sediments appears quite effective at decreasing aqueous, adsorbed uranium concentrations. The NH3 gas treatment is also fairly effective for decreasing the mobility of U-carbonate coprecipitates, but shows mixed success for U present in Na-boltwoodite. There are some changes in U-carbonate surface phases that were identified by surface phase analysis, but no changes observed for Na-boltwoodite. It is likely that dissolution of sediment minerals (predominantly montmorillonite, muscovite, kaolinite) under the alkaline conditions created and subsequent precipitation as the pH returns to natural conditions coat some of the uranium surface phases, although a greater understanding of these processes is needed to predict the long term impact on uranium mobility. Injection of NH3 gas into sediments at low water content (1% to 16% water content) can effectively treat a large area without water addition, so there is little uranium mobilization (i.e., transport over cm or larger scale) during the injection phase.

  17. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone, Addendum to the BX Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This addendum to the BX Tank Farm Report (GJO-98-40-TARA, GJO-HAN-19) published in August 1998 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the BX Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the BX Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington

  18. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone, Addendum to the TX Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This addendum to the TX Tank Farm Report (GJO-97-13-TAR, GJO-HAN-11) published in September 1997 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the TX Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the TX Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington

  19. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone Addendum to the S Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This addendum to the S Tank Farm Report (GJO-97-31-TAR, GJO-HAN-17) published in February 1998 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the S Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the S Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington

  20. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone Addendum to the TY Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This addendum to the TY Tank Farm Report (GJO-97-30-TAR, GJO-HAN-16) published in January 1998 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the TY Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the TY Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington

  1. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone, Addendum to the T Tank Farm Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This addendum to the T Tank Farm Report (GJO-99-101-TARA, GJO-HAN-27) published in September 1999 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the T Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the T Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington

  2. Hanford Tank Farms Vadose Zone Addendum to the TY Tank Farm Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spatz, Robert

    2000-08-01

    This addendum to the TY Tank Farm Report (GJO-97-30-TAR, GJO-HAN-16) published in January 1998 incorporates the results of high-rate and repeat logging activities along with shape factor analysis of the logging data. A high-rate logging system was developed and deployed in the TY Tank Farm to measure cesium-137 concentration levels in high gamma flux zones where the spectral gamma logging system was unable to collect usable data because of high dead times and detector saturation. This report presents additional data and revised visualizations of subsurface contaminant distribution in the TY Tank Farm at the DOE Hanford Site in the state of Washington.

  3. Dry-Matter Production in Irrigated Crops in the Arid Mediterranean Zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The water balance equation for crops is applied to research on the water requirements of crops in the arid Mediterranean zone and the effectiveness of the water according to the season. The neutron probe is used to determine variations in the groundwater reserve. The method used results in an error in estimation of the term ΔR (variations in groundwater reserves in the zone penetrated by the roots) not exceeding 10 mm of water. For fodder crops which undergo successive cuttings (sorghum, lucerne) the method used disclosed some outstanding facts, which may be confirmed by theoretical study of the equation for the production of dry matter. These results show in particular that: There is in fact a simple relationship between the yield and the ETR water consumption (true evapotranspiration) > Nevertheless, for a given quantity of water added to the soil (rainfall + drainage), the demand made by the crop on the groundwater reserves varies in particular with the level of these reserves and with the root development; An important finding is that the maximum yield, obtained when ETR= ETP (potential evapotranspiration) , decreases as the ETP values increase. For large ETP values, when the light factor does not limit photosynthesis, the product (ETP x yield) is relatively constant. Therefore, high potential evapotranspiration values appear to be an important limiting factor in the production of dry matter in the arid Mediterranean zone. The paper concludes by suggesting a number of agronomic solutions. (author)

  4. Accelerated transport of 90Sr following a release of high ionic strength solution in vadose zone sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hull, Laurence C.; Schafer, Annette L.

    2008-04-01

    Numerical simulation of cation exchange and mineral precipitation/dissolution reactions using the multiphase reactive geochemical transport code TOUGHREACT has provided important insight into the distribution of 90Sr among layers of geologic strata in a complex vadose zone at the U. S. Department of Energy's Idaho National Laboratory. During a transfer operation in November 1972, 70.4 m 3 of acidic, high ionic strength liquid containing 15,900 Ci of 90Sr was released over five days into alluvial gravels 137 m above the Snake River Plain Aquifer. Sampling data from perched water zones 33 m below the release contain very high levels of 90Sr as do soil samples obtained nearer the point of release. Use of traditional simulation approaches using laboratory-measured constant partitioning coefficients ( Kd) cannot simultaneously explain perched water and soil concentrations. To address the discrepancy, a reactive transport approach was adopted to include competitive cation exchange, dissolution/precipitation of calcite, carbon dioxide gas production and transport, and gibbsite precipitation. Simulation results using this model suggest that some of the 90Sr could have been transported very rapidly immediately after the release with the acceleration facilitated by competition for cation exchange sites with high sodium concentrations in the released liquid and calcium dissolved from calcite, and to a lesser extent by formation of aqueous complexes with nitrate. Once the leading edge of the liquid assemblage was flushed from the alluvium, the mobility of the remaining 90Sr decreased significantly in the absence of the competing cations. Calculations indicate that there should be a net increase in calcite, suggesting that 90Sr could be entrained in the mineral lattice, but insufficient field data exist for confirmation. Sensitivity studies show that the cation exchange selectivity coefficients were the most sensitive individual parameters determining the 90Sr distribution

  5. Accelerated transport of (90)Sr following a release of high ionic strength solution in vadose zone sediments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hull, Laurence C; Schafer, Annette L

    2008-04-28

    Numerical simulation of cation exchange and mineral precipitation/dissolution reactions using the multiphase reactive geochemical transport code TOUGHREACT has provided important insight into the distribution of (90)Sr among layers of geologic strata in a complex vadose zone at the U. S. Department of Energy's Idaho National Laboratory. During a transfer operation in November 1972, 70.4 m(3) of acidic, high ionic strength liquid containing 15,900 Ci of (90)Sr was released over five days into alluvial gravels 137 m above the Snake River Plain Aquifer. Sampling data from perched water zones 33 m below the release contain very high levels of (90)Sr as do soil samples obtained nearer the point of release. Use of traditional simulation approaches using laboratory-measured constant partitioning coefficients (K(d)) cannot simultaneously explain perched water and soil concentrations. To address the discrepancy, a reactive transport approach was adopted to include competitive cation exchange, dissolution/precipitation of calcite, carbon dioxide gas production and transport, and gibbsite precipitation. Simulation results using this model suggest that some of the (90)Sr could have been transported very rapidly immediately after the release with the acceleration facilitated by competition for cation exchange sites with high sodium concentrations in the released liquid and calcium dissolved from calcite, and to a lesser extent by formation of aqueous complexes with nitrate. Once the leading edge of the liquid assemblage was flushed from the alluvium, the mobility of the remaining (90)Sr decreased significantly in the absence of the competing cations. Calculations indicate that there should be a net increase in calcite, suggesting that (90)Sr could be entrained in the mineral lattice, but insufficient field data exist for confirmation. Sensitivity studies show that the cation exchange selectivity coefficients were the most sensitive individual parameters determining the (90)Sr

  6. A chaotic-dynamical conceptual model to describe fluid flow and contaminant transport in a fractured vadose zone. 1997 annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    'Understanding subsurface flow and transport processes is critical for effective assessment, decision-making, and remediation activities for contaminated sites. However, for fluid flow and contaminant transport through fractured vadose zones, traditional hydrogeological approaches are often found to be inadequate. In this project, the authors examine flow and transport through a fractured vadose zone as a deterministic chaotic dynamical process, and develop a model of it in these terms. Initially, they examine separately the geometric model of fractured rock and the flow dynamics model needed to describe chaotic behavior. Ultimately they will put the geometry and flow dynamics together to develop a chaotic-dynamical model of flow and transport in a fractured vadose zone. They investigate water flow and contaminant transport on several scales, ranging from small-scale laboratory experiments in fracture replicas and fractured cores, to field experiments conducted in a single exposed fracture at a basalt outcrop, and finally to a ponded infiltration test using a pond of 7 by 8 m. In the field experiments, the authors measure the time-variation of water flux, moisture content, and hydraulic head at various locations, as well as the total inflow rate to the subsurface. Such variations reflect the changes in the geometry and physics of water flow that display chaotic behavior, which the authors try to reconstruct using the data obtained. In the analysis of experimental data, a chaotic model can be used to predict the long-term bounds on fluid flow and transport behavior, known as the attractor of the system, and to examine the limits of short-term predictability within these bounds. This approach is especially well suited to the need for short-term predictions to support remediation decisions and long-term bounding studies.'

  7. Modeling the air-soil transport pathway of perfluorooctanoic acid in the mid-Ohio Valley using linked air dispersion and vadose zone models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Hyeong-Moo; Ryan, P. Barry; Vieira, Verónica M.; Bartell, Scott M.

    2012-05-01

    As part of an extensive modeling effort on the air-soil-groundwater transport pathway of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), this study was designed to compare the performance of different air dispersion modeling systems (AERMOD vs. ISCST3), and different approaches to handling incomplete meteorological data using a data set with substantial soil measurements and a well characterized point source for air emissions. Two of the most commonly used EPA air dispersion models, AERMOD and ISCST3, were linked with the EPA vadose zone model PRZM-3. Predicted deposition rates from the air dispersion model were used as input values for the vadose zone model to estimate soil concentrations of PFOA at different depths. We applied 34 years of meteorological data including hourly surface measurements from Parkersburg Airport and 5 years of onsite wind direction and speed to the air dispersion models. We compared offsite measured soil concentrations to predictions made for the corresponding sampling depths, focusing on soil rather than air measurements because the offsite soil samples were less likely to be influenced by short-term variability in emission rates and meteorological conditions. PFOA concentrations in surface soil (0-30 cm depth) were under-predicted and those in subsurface soil (>30 cm depth) were over-predicted compared to observed concentrations by both linked air and vadose zone model. Overall, the simulated values from the linked modeling system were positively correlated with those observed in surface soil (Spearman's rho, Rsp = 0.59-0.70) and subsurface soil (Rsp = 0.46-0.48). This approach provides a useful modeling scheme for similar exposure and risk analyses where the air-soil-groundwater transport is a primary contamination pathway.

  8. Validation of finite water-content vadose zone dynamics method using column experiments with a moving water table and applied surface flux

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogden, Fred L.; Lai, Wencong; Steinke, Robert C.; Zhu, Jianting

    2015-05-01

    Data from laboratory experiments on a 143 cm tall and 14.5 cm diameter column, packed with Wedron sand with varied constant upper boundary fluxes and water table velocities for both falling and rising water tables are used to validate a finite water-content vadose zone simulation methodology. The one-dimensional finite water-content Talbot and Ogden (2008) (T-O) infiltration and redistribution method was improved to simulate groundwater table dynamic effects and compared against the numerical solution of the Richards equation using Hydrus-1D. Both numerical solutions agreed satisfactorily with time series measurements of water content. Results showed similar performance for both methods, with the T-O method on average having higher Nash-Sutcliffe efficiencies and smaller absolute biases. Hydrus-1D was more accurate in predicting deponding times in the case of a falling water table, while Hydrus-1D and the T-O method had similar errors in predicted ponding times in the case of a rising water table in six of nine tests. The improved T-O method was able to predict general features of vadose zone moisture dynamics with moving water table and surface infiltration using an explicit, mass-conservative formulation. The advantage of an explicit formulation is that it is numerically simple, using forward Euler solution methodology, and is guaranteed to converge and to conserve mass. These properties make the improved T-O method presented in this paper a robust and computationally efficient alternative to the numerical solution of the Richards equation in hydrological modeling applications involving groundwater table dynamic effects on vadose zone soil moistures.

  9. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the C Tank Farm: Borehole C4297 and RCRA Borehole 299-E27-22

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F.; Serne, R. JEFFREY; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Baum, Steven R.; Parker, Kent E.; Lindberg, Michael J.

    2006-10-18

    The overall goal of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., is to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities at Hanford. To meet this goal, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. tasked scientists from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to perform detailed analyses on vadose zone sediments from within Waste Management Area (WMA) C. This report is the first of two reports written to present the results of these analyses. Specifically, this report contains all the geologic, geochemical, and selected physical characterization data collected on vadose zone sediment recovered from borehole C4297, installed adjacent to Tank C-105, and from borehole 299-E27-22, installed directly north of the C Tank Farm. Sediments from borehole 299-E27-22 were considered to be background uncontaminated sediments against which to compare contaminated sediments for the C Tank Farm characterization effort. This report also presents our interpretation of the data in the context of sediment types, the vertical extent of contamination, the migration potential of the contaminants, and the likely source of the contamination in the vadose zone and groundwater below the C Tank Farm. The information presented in this report supports the A-AX, C and U Waste Management Area field investigation report(a) in preparation by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. A core log was generated for both boreholes and a geologic evaluation of all core samples was performed at the time of opening. Aliquots of sediment from the borehole core samples were analyzed and characterized in the laboratory for the following parameters: moisture content, gamma-emitting radionuclides, one-to-one water extracts (which provide soil pH, electrical conductivity, cation, trace metal, and anion data), total carbon and inorganic carbon content, and 8 M nitric acid extracts (which provide a measure of the total leachable sediment content of contaminants). Two key radiocontaminants

  10. 300 Area Treatability Test: Laboratory Development of Polyphosphate Remediation Technology for In Situ Treatment of Uranium Contamination in the Vadose Zone and Capillary Fringe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Pierce, Eric M.; Bacon, Diana H.; Oostrom, Martinus; Gunderson, Katie M.; Webb, Samuel M.; Bovaird, Chase C.; Cordova, Elsa A.; Clayton, Eric T.; Parker, Kent E.; Ermi, Ruby M.; Baum, Steven R.; Vermeul, Vincent R.; Fruchter, Jonathan S.

    2008-09-30

    This report presents results from bench-scale treatability studies conducted under site-specific conditions to optimize the polyphosphate amendment for implementation of a field-scale technology demonstration to stabilize uranium within the 300 Area vadose and smear zones of the Hanford Site. The general treatability testing approach consisted of conducting studies with site sediment and under site conditions, to develop an effective chemical formulation and infiltration approach for the polyphosphate amendment under site conditions. Laboratory-scale dynamic column tests were used to 1) quantify the retardation of polyphosphate and its degradation products as a function of water content, 2) determine the rate of polyphosphate degradation under unsaturated conditions, 3) develop an understanding of the mechanism of autunite formation via the reaction of solid phase calcite-bound uranium and aqueous polyphosphate remediation technology, 4) develop an understanding of the transformation mechanism, the identity of secondary phases, and the kinetics of the reaction between uranyl-carbonate and -silicate minerals with the polyphosphate remedy under solubility-limiting conditions, and 5) quantify the extent and rate of uranium released and immobilized based on the infiltration rate of the polyphosphate remedy and the effect of and periodic wet-dry cycling on the efficacy of polyphosphate remediation for uranium in the vadose zone and smear zone.

  11. VOCs in Arid soils: Technology summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Volatile Organic Compounds In Arid Soils Integrated Demonstration (VOC-Arid ID) focuses on technologies to clean up volatile organic compounds and associated contaminants in soil and groundwater at arid sites. The initial host site is the 200 West Area at DOE's Hanford site in southeastern Washington state. The primary VOC contaminant is carbon tetrachloride, in association with heavy metals and radionuclides. An estimated 580--920 metric tons of carbon tetrachloride were disposed of between 1955 and 1973, resulting in extensive soil and groundwater contamination. The VOC-Arid ID schedule has been divided into three phases of implementation. The phased approach provides for: rapid transfer of technologies to the Environmental Restoration (EM-40) programs once demonstrated; logical progression in the complexity of demonstrations based on improved understanding of the VOC problem; and leveraging of the host site EM-40 activities to reduce the overall cost of the demonstrations. During FY92 and FY93, the primary technology demonstrations within the ID were leveraged with an ongoing expedited response action at the Hanford 200 West Area, which is directed at vapor extraction of VOCs from the vadose (unsaturated) zone. Demonstration efforts are underway in the areas of subsurface characterization including: drilling and access improvements, off-gas and borehole monitoring of vadose zone VOC concentrations to aid in soil vapor extraction performance evaluation, and treatment of VOC-contaminated off-gas. These current demonstration efforts constitute Phase 1 of the ID and, because of the ongoing vadose zone ERA, can result in immediate transfer of successful technologies to EM-40

  12. Surface-water infiltration and groundwater movement in arid zones of Venezuela

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radiocarbon dating of the carbonate species present in groundwater is capable of furnishing information on the recharge of underground deposits as well as directions and rates of movement. The origins of the dissolved carbonates fall under two classifications: modern carbon is provided by carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and the products of plants in the soil, and ancient carbon comes from dissolving limestone. The latter source is essentially free of radiocarbon and, therefore, causes falsely old dates for the total groundwater carbonates. An estimate of the amount of limestone dilution is the main difficulty connected with radiocarbon dating of groundwater. The methods proposed for this correction were applied to several aquifers under different conditions. It is seen, with numerous measurements, that the use of naturally occurring 13C would result in important uncertainties. Adjustments of the dates for the limestone contribution employing bicarbonate and total carbon concentrations is considerably more successful and gives reasonable results in the cases studied. Aquifers of Barquisimeto, Maracaibo, Coro, Paraguana and Valencia in Venezuela were investigated by the method of natural radiocarbon. Ages ranging from modern to 35 000 yr were obtained. In general, the older dates correlate well with arid climatic conditions. However, deep wells providing modern water have been observed in virtual deserts, but these are explained by the re-entrance of irrigation water previously extracted from the ground. Infiltrations from rivers and lakes were also studied using wells surrounding the surface-water bodies. The relationship between the amount and the distribution throughout the year of rainfall and evaporation is seen to be important for arid zones. Radiocarbon ages of the various groundwaters, after correction for limestone, are in agreement with the expected situations as deduced from considerations of climatic conditions of the different regions. The practical

  13. A method of characterizing land-cover swap changes in the arid zone of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Yecheng; Li, Baolin; Gao, Xizhang; Liu, Haijiang; Xu, Lili; Zhou, Chenghu

    2016-03-01

    Net area change analysis can dramatically underestimate total change of land cover, even sometimes seriously misinterpret ecological processes of the ecosystem, especially in arid or semiarid zones. In this paper, a suite of indices are presented to characterize land-cover swaps that may seriously damage the ecosystem in arid or semiarid zones, based on swap-change areas extracted from remotely sensed images. First, swap percentage of total area and swap intensity of total changes were used to determine the status of land-cover swap change in an area. Then, dominated swap category and individual swap-change intensity for a land-cover category were used to determine flagged land-cover swap-change categories. Finally, swap-change mode and Pielou's index were used to determine the land-cover swap-change processes of dominant categories. A case study is conducted using this approach, based on two land-cover maps in the 1980s and 2000 in Naiman Qi, Tongliao City, Inner Mongolia, China. This study shows that the approach can clearly quantify the severity and flagged classes of land-cover swap-change and reveal their relationship with ecological processes of the ecosystem. These results indicate that the approach can give deep insights into swap change, which can be very valuable to land-cover policy making and management.

  14. Measurement of unsaturated flow below the root zone at an arid site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We measured moisture content changes below the root zone of a grass-covered area at the Hanford Site in Washington State and determined that drainage exceeded 5 cm or 20% of the total precipitation for November 1982 through October 1983. Although the average annual rainfall at the Hanford Site is 16 cm, the test year precipitation exceeded 24 cm with nearly 75% of the precipitation occurring during November through April. The moisture content at all depths in the soil reached a maximum and the monthly average potential evapotranspiration reached a minimum during this period of time. Moisture content profiles were measured at depth on biweekly intervals from January through October; these data were used to estimate drainage from the profile. Grass roots were not found below 1 m, hence moisture changes below 1 m were assumed to be entirely due to drainage. Upward capillary flow was considered to be negligible since the soil was a coars sand and the water table was below 10 m. The large amount of drainage from this arid site is attributed to rainfall distribution pattern, shallow root-zone, and soil drainage characteristics. Unsaturated flow model simulations predicted about 5-cm drainage from the grass site using daily climatic data, estimated soil hydraulic properties, and estimated transpiration parameters for cheatgrass at the Hanford Site. Improvements in the comparisons between measured and predicted drainage are anticipated with field-measured hydraulic properties and more realistic estimates of grass cover transpiration. However, both measurements and model predictions support the conclusion that under conditions where the majority of the rainfall occurs during periods of low potential evaporation and where soils are coarse textured, significant drainage can occur from the root zone of vegetated areas at Hanford or similar arid zone sites

  15. Characterization of Direct-Push Vadose Zone Sediments from the 241-B and 241-BX Tank Farms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Christopher F.; Icenhower, Jonathan P.; Um, Wooyong; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Iovin, Cristian; Lanigan, David C.; Clayton, Ray E.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Clayton, Eric T.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Orr, Robert D.

    2007-12-21

    Geochemical tests provide evidence for the transit of a plume of caustic waste solution through the sediment column at the Hanford 241-B and -BX Tank Farms. Direct-push samples recovered from boreholes surrounding Tanks 241-B-110 and 241-BX-102 and related waste transfer lines and diversion boxes included sediments typical of those previously recovered from other localities on the Hanford Site. The Hanford formation sediments are dominantly quartzo-feldspathic sands strewn with lithic fragments, displaying a range of particle size distributions and sorting characteristics. Some moderately well-sorted, fine-grained lithologies are interpreted as lenticular bodies irregularly dispersed in coarser-grained, more poorly sorted sediments. Tier I tests conducted on the vadose zone sediments revealed an inverse correlation between moisture content and sediment size fraction (i.e., there is greater moisture content in finer-grained sediments). The Tier I tests also showed that the pore water solutions were likely sodium-rich, moderately saline, and possessed higher pH values than background (untainted) sediments. These data are characteristic of sediments that have encountered sodium-rich, saline, caustic waste solution, as documented in other reports at other suspect contamination sites around Hanford. Analyses of solutions from 1:1 water extracts reveal relatively balanced cation and anion concentrations, indicating that most of the geochemical species have been accounted for. The water extract data for affected sediments also indicate unusually high concentrations of aluminum, iron, and phosphorus. The relatively high concentrations of aluminum and iron may be the result of dissolution of secondary amorphous phases that precipitated after a reactive plume partially dissolved aluminum- and iron-bearing phases as it migrated through the sediment column. On the other hand, the presence of elevated concentrations of phosphorous may be the tell-tale signature of wastes

  16. Utilizing High-Performance Computing to Investigate Parameter Sensitivity of an Inversion Model for Vadose Zone Flow and Transport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Z.; Ward, A. L.; Fang, Y.; Yabusaki, S.

    2011-12-01

    High-resolution geologic models have proven effective in improving the accuracy of subsurface flow and transport predictions. However, many of the parameters in subsurface flow and transport models cannot be determined directly at the scale of interest and must be estimated through inverse modeling. A major challenge, particularly in vadose zone flow and transport, is the inversion of the highly-nonlinear, high-dimensional problem as current methods are not readily scalable for large-scale, multi-process models. In this paper we describe the implementation of a fully automated approach for addressing complex parameter optimization and sensitivity issues on massively parallel multi- and many-core systems. The approach is based on the integration of PNNL's extreme scale Subsurface Transport Over Multiple Phases (eSTOMP) simulator, which uses the Global Array toolkit, with the Beowulf-Cluster inspired parallel nonlinear parameter estimation software, BeoPEST in the MPI mode. In the eSTOMP/BeoPEST implementation, a pre-processor generates all of the PEST input files based on the eSTOMP input file. Simulation results for comparison with observations are extracted automatically at each time step eliminating the need for post-process data extractions. The inversion framework was tested with three different experimental data sets: one-dimensional water flow at Hanford Grass Site; irrigation and infiltration experiment at the Andelfingen Site; and a three-dimensional injection experiment at Hanford's Sisson and Lu Site. Good agreements are achieved in all three applications between observations and simulations in both parameter estimates and water dynamics reproduction. Results show that eSTOMP/BeoPEST approach is highly scalable and can be run efficiently with hundreds or thousands of processors. BeoPEST is fault tolerant and new nodes can be dynamically added and removed. A major advantage of this approach is the ability to use high-resolution geologic models to preserve

  17. Soil Water and Thermal Gradients in the Vadose Zone: Assessing Evapotranspiration, Recharge Rates and Shifts in Phreatophytic Water Source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koonce, J.; Young, M.; Devitt, D.; Yu, Z.; Wagner, A.; Fenstermaker, L.

    2011-12-01

    Soil water and temperature are important variables in energy and water balance studies, particularly to processes involved in evapotranspiration (ET), which provides a direct link between the balances and is crucial for closing the water budget. With a large uncertainty in precipitation rates from interannual variability and increased demand for water resources, understanding these processes is critical when assessing the movement of mass and energy through the vadose zone. Stress on the long-term water supply could lead to a potential shift of water source by phreatophytes. We seek answers to the following questions: Can we use soil temperature to estimate ET and downward water fluxes? Do changes in temperature signals follow shifts in water sources for plants? Although ET and recharge rates are primarily driven by atmospheric demand and water availability, to what extent does soil temperature change these rates? Data were analyzed from an array of soil water and temperature instruments, including TDR and heat dissipation sensors at multiple points from 30 to 500 cm, and fiber optic distributed temperature sensing at depth increments of 1.14 cm. ET data were obtained from an eddy covariance (EC) system and groundwater depth was measured using a pressure transducer in a well. Instruments were installed in Spring Valley, NV, a site dominated by Big Sage and Greasewood. ET dominates water loss at the site from March through September. We hypothesize that groundwater recharge did not occur within the valley floor during 2010-2011. Data indicate that snowmelt and precipitation percolates to ~300 cm depth (water contents increasing from 0.06 in Oct-2010 to 0.10 in May-2011). Gradual water content increases at 400 and 500 cm were measured; however, groundwater levels rose sharply from early October 2010 to approximately mid-June 2011, suggesting a high capillary fringe. Diurnal variation of soil temperatures are observed to ~50 cm depth and seasonal variation observed to

  18. Modeling non-steady state radioisotope transport in the vadose zone - A case study using uranium isotopes at Peña Blanca, Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ku, T. L.; Luo, S.; Goldstein, S. J.; Murrell, M. T.; Chu, W. L.; Dobson, P. F.

    2009-10-01

    Current models using U- and Th-series disequilibria to study radioisotope transport in groundwater systems mostly consider a steady-state situation. These models have limited applicability to the vadose zone (UZ) where the concentration and migratory behavior of radioisotopes in fluid are often transitory. We present here, as a first attempt of its kind, a model simulating the non-steady state, intermittent fluid transport in vadose layers. It provides quantitative constraints on in-situ migration of dissolved and colloidal radioisotopes in terms of retardation factor and rock-water interaction (or water transit) time. For uranium, the simulation predicts that intermittent flushing in the UZ leads to a linear relationship between reciprocal U concentration and 234U/ 238U ratio in percolating waters, with the intercept and slope bearing information on the rates of dissolution and α-recoil of U isotopes, respectively. The general validity of the model appears to be borne out by the measurement of uranium isotopes in UZ waters collected at various times over a period during 1995-2006 from a site in the Peña Blanca mining district, Mexico, where the Nopal I uranium deposit is located. Enhanced 234U/ 238U ratios in vadose-zone waters resulting from lengthened non-flushing time as prescribed by the model provide an interpretative basis for using 234U/ 238U in cave calcites to reconstruct the regional changes in hydrology and climate. We also provide a theoretical account of the model's potential applications using radium isotopes.

  19. Modeling non-steady state radioisotope transport in the vadose zone--A case study using uranium isotopes at Pena Blanca, Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ku, T. L.; Luo, S.; Goldstein, S. J.; Murrell, M. T.; Chu, W. L.; Dobson, P. F.

    2009-06-01

    Current models using U- and Th-series disequilibria to study radioisotope transport in groundwater systems mostly consider a steady-state situation. These models have limited applicability to the vadose zone (UZ) where the concentration and migratory behavior of radioisotopes in fluid are often transitory. We present here, as a first attempt of its kind, a model simulating the non-steady state, intermittent fluid transport in vadose layers. It provides quantitative constraints on in-situ migration of dissolved and colloidal radioisotopes in terms of retardation factor and rock-water interaction (or water transit) time. For uranium, the simulation predicts that intermittent flushing in the UZ leads to a linear relationship between reciprocal U concentration and {sup 234}U/{sup 238}U ratio in percolating waters, with the intercept and slope bearing information on the rates of dissolution and {alpha}-recoil of U isotopes, respectively. The general validity of the model appears to be borne out by the measurement of uranium isotopes in UZ waters collected at various times over a period during 1995-2006 from a site in the Pena Blanca mining district, Mexico, where the Nopal I uranium deposit is located. Enhanced {sup 234}U/{sup 238}U ratios in vadose-zone waters resulting from lengthened non-flushing time as prescribed by the model provide an interpretative basis for using {sup 234}U/{sup 238}U in cave calcites to reconstruct the regional changes in hydrology and climate. We also provide a theoretical account of the model's potential applications using radium isotopes.

  20. VAMOS: The verification and monitoring options study: Current research options for in-situ monitoring and verification of contaminant remediation and containment within the vadose zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Verification and Monitoring Options Study Project (VAMOS) was established to identify high-priority options for future vadose-zone environmental research in the areas of in-situ remediation monitoring, post-closure monitoring, and containment emplacement and verification monitoring. VAMOS examined projected needs not currently being met with applied technology in order to develop viable monitoring and verification research options. The study emphasized a compatible systems approach to reinforce the need for utilizing compatible components to provide user friendly site monitoring systems. To identify the needs and research options related to vadose-zone environmental monitoring and verification, a literature search and expert panel forums were conducted. The search included present drivers for environmental monitoring technology, technology applications, and research efforts. The forums included scientific, academic, industry, and regulatory environmental professionals as well as end users of environmental technology. The experts evaluated current and future monitoring and verification needs, methods for meeting these needs, and viable research options and directions. A variety of high-priority technology development, user facility, and technology guidance research options were developed and presented as an outcome of the literature search and expert panel forums

  1. Site S-7 Representative Model and Application for the Vadose Zone Monitoring System (VZMS) McClellan AFB - 1998 Semi-Annual Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James, A.L.; Oldenburg, C.M.

    1998-12-01

    Vadose zone data collection and enhanced data analysis are continuing for the Vadose Zone Monitoring System (VZMS) installed at site S-7 in IC 34 at McClellan MB. Data from core samples from boreholes drilled in 1998 and from VZMS continuous monitoring are evaluated and compared to previously collected data and analyses. The suite of data collected to date is used to develop and constrain a spatially averaged, one-dimensional site S-7 representative model that is implemented into T2VOC. Testing of the conceptual model under conditions of recharge of 100 mm/yr produces plausible moisture contents relative to data from several sources. Further scoping calculations involving gas-phase TCE transport in the representative model were undertaken. We investigate the role of recharge on TCE transport as well as the role of ion- and gas-phase flow driven by density and barometric pumping effects. This report provides the first example of the application of the site S-7 representative model in th e investigation of subsurface VOC movement.

  2. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: RCRA Borehole 299-E33-338 Located Near the B-BX-BY Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Gee, Glendon W.; Schaef, Herbert T.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Baum, Steven R.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Brown, Christopher F.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Royack, Lisa J.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Table 4.8. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in June 2003. The overall goals of the of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc., are: 1) to define risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities, 2) to identify and evaluate the efficacy of interim measures, and 3) to aid via collection of geotechnical information and data, future decisions that must be made by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) regarding the near-term operations, future waste retrieval, and final closure activities for the single-shell tank waste management areas. For a more complete discussion of the goals of the Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project, see the overall work plan, Phase 1 RCRA Facility Investigation/Corrective Measures Study Work Plan for the Single-Shell Tank Waste Management Areas (DOE 1999). Specific details on the rationale for activities performed at the B-BX-BY tank farm waste management area are found in CH2M HILL (2000).

  3. Isotope studies of a thick unsaturated zone in a semi-arid area of Southern Africa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Unsaturated zone profiles ranging in depth from 8 m to 22 m were obtained by hand augering an aeolian sand cover in the southern reaches of the semi-arid Kalahari thirstland. Moisture contents were rather low (<3 wt.%); in situ moisture chloride concentrations, measured by selective ion electrode following elutriation, are generally <500 ppm. Deuterium in the moisture was measured mass spectrometrically by direct quantitative conversion to hydrogen on zinc metal of moist soil samples. A novel technique of direct equilibration was developed for oxygen-18 analysis. Neither a thermonuclear tritium peak nor a stable isotope evaporation inversion near the surface could be observed in any of the profiles. Remarkable differences both laterally and vertically are observed in most parameters measured between profiles taken a few tens of metres apart. At greater depths, these differences become less pronounced. Recharge estimates based on chloride differ markedly from those obtained from tritium. Although the stable isotope values of the underlying saturated zone are similar to moisture in the deeper sections of the unsaturated zone profiles, the markedly lower chloride concentrations point towards preferential or bypass flow as an important mechanism of ground water recharge in the area. This can be regarded as a benchmark site on account of the wealth of unsaturated zone data as well as the detailed and ongoing rainfall record. (author)

  4. Untangling a species complex of arid zone grasses (Triodia) reveals patterns congruent with co-occurring animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Benjamin M; Barrett, Matthew D; Krauss, Siegfried L; Thiele, Kevin

    2016-08-01

    The vast Australian arid zone formed over the last 15million years, and gradual aridification as well as more extreme Pliocene and Pleistocene climate shifts have impacted the evolution of its biota. Understanding the evolutionary history of groups of organisms or regional biotas such as the Australian arid biota requires clear delimitation of the units of biodiversity (taxa). Here we integrate evidence from nuclear (ETS and ITS) and chloroplast (rps16-trnK spacer) regions and morphology to clarify taxonomic boundaries in a species complex of Australian hummock grasses (Triodia) to better understand the evolution of Australian arid zone plants and to evaluate congruence in distribution patterns with co-occurring organisms. We find evidence for multiple new taxa in the T. basedowii species complex, but also incongruence between data sets and indications of hybridization that complicate delimitation. We find that the T. basedowii complex has high lineage diversity and endemism in the biologically important Pilbara region of Western Australia, consistent with the region acting as a refugium. Taxa show strong geographic structure in the Pilbara, congruent with recent work on co-occurring animals and suggesting common evolutionary drivers across the biota. Our findings confirm recognition of the Pilbara as an important centre of biodiversity in the Australian arid zone, and provide a basis for future taxonomic revision of the T. basedowii complex and more detailed study of its evolutionary history and that of arid Australia. PMID:27179699

  5. Groundwater flow functioning in arid zones with thick volcanic aquifer units: North-Central Mexico

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Population increase in arid zones of Mexico has created the presence of 450% new cities with more that 50,000 inhabitants, as related to the 1950s. Due to the arid nature of the environment, the once sufficient spring and shallow water are becoming inadequate for the supply of those cities. An answer to this problem lies with the sustainable development of deep groundwater. The geological features of the country include fractured volcanic aquifer units that are more than 1,500 m thick, and are regionally continuous over of several hundred thousands of square kilometres. Groundwater development decisions need to consider, in the long span, inter-basin groundwater flow and the need to prevent environmental impacts in distant sites hydraulically connected with extraction centres. Radiocarbon is an excellent tool that initially has been applied to characterize groundwater in thick aquifer units in central Mexico to provide evidence on the hierarchy of flow (local/regional) and water age from where the distance of regional recharge was inferred. Radiocarbon also helps constrain flow path length which can then be used to characterize inter-basin groundwater communication. Radiocarbon has a large potential for future expansion of research and water management application. (author)

  6. Electrical Resistivity Correlation to Vadose Zone Sediment and Pore-Water Composition for the BC Cribs and Trenches Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Ward, Anderson L.; Um, Wooyong; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Rucker, Dale F.; Lanigan, David C.; Benecke, Mark W.

    2009-06-01

    This technical report documents the results of geochemical and soil resistivity characterization of sediment obtained from four boreholes drilled in the BC Cribs and Trench area. Vadose zone sediment samples were obtained at a frequency of about every 2.5 ft from approximately 5 ft bgs to borehole total depth. In total, 505 grab samples and 39 six-inch long cores were obtained for characterization. The pore-water chemical composition data, laboratory-scale soil resistivity and other ancillary physical and hydrologic measurements and analyses described in this report are designed to provide a crucial link between direct measurements on sediments and the surface-based electrical-resistivity information obtained via field surveys. A second goal of the sediment characterization was to measure the total and water-leachable concentrations of key contaminants of concern as a function of depth and distance from the footprints of inactive disposal facilities. The total and water-leachable concentrations of key contaminants will be used to update contaminant distribution conceptual models and to provide more data for improving base-line risk predictions and remedial alternative selections. The ERC “ground truthing” exercise for the individual boreholes showed mixed results. In general, the high concentrations of dissolved salts in the pore waters of sediments from C5923, C5924 and C4191 produced a low resistivity “target” in the processed resistivity field surveys, and variability could be seen in the resistivity data that could relate to the variability in pore- water concentrations but the correlations (regression R2 were mediocre ranging from 0.2 to 0.7 at best; where perfect correlation is 1.0). The field-based geophysical data also seemed to suffer from a sort of vertigo, where looking down from the ground surface, the target (e.g., maximum pore-water salt concentration) depth was difficult to resolve. The best correlations between the field electrical

  7. Using vadose zone data and spatial statistics to assess the impact of cultivated land and dairy waste lagoons on groundwater contamination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baram, S.; Ronen, Z.; Kurtzman, D.; Peeters, A.; Dahan, O.

    2013-12-01

    Land cultivation and dairy waste lagoons are considered to be nonpoint and point sources of groundwater contamination by chloride (Cl-) and nitrate (NO3-). The objective of this work is to introduce a methodology to assess the past and future impacts of such agricultural activities on regional groundwater quality. The method is based on mass balances and on spatial statistical analysis of Cl- and NO3-concentration distributions in the saturated and unsaturated zones. The method enables quantitative analysis of the relation between the locations of pollution point sources and the spatial variability in Cl- and NO3- concentrations in groundwater. The method was applied to the Beer-Tuvia region, Israel, where intensive dairy farming along with land cultivation has been practiced for over 50 years above the local phreatic aquifer. Mass balance calculations accounted for the various groundwater recharge and abstraction sources and sinks in the entire region. The mass balances showed that leachates from lagoons and the cultivated land have contributed 6.0 and 89.4 % of the total mass of Cl- added to the aquifer and 12.6 and 77.4 % of the total mass of NO3-. The chemical composition of the aquifer and vadose zone water suggested that irrigated agricultural activity in the region is the main contributor of Cl- and NO3- to the groundwater. A low spatial correlation between the Cl- and NO3- concentrations in the groundwater and the on-land location of the dairy farms strengthened this assumption, despite the dairy waste lagoon being a point source for groundwater contamination by Cl- and NO3-. Results demonstrate that analyzing vadose zone and groundwater data by spatial statistical analysis methods can significantly contribute to the understanding of the relations between groundwater contaminating sources, and to assessing appropriate remediation steps.

  8. Spatially resolved U(VI) partitioning and speciation: Implications for plume scale behavior of contaminant U in the Hanford vadose zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wan, Jiamin; Kim, Yongman; Tokunaga, Tetsu K.; Wang, Zheming; Dixit, Suvasis; Steefel, Carl; Saiz, Eduardo; Kunz, Martin; Tamura, Nobumichi

    2009-02-01

    A saline-alkaline brine containing high concentrations of U(VI) was accidentally spilled at the Hanford Site in 1951, introducing 10 tons of U into sediments under storage tank BX-102. U concentrations in the deep vadose zone and groundwater plumes increase with time, yet how the U has been migrating is not fully understood. We simulated the spill event in laboratory soil columns, followed by aging, and obtained spatially resolved U partitioning and speciation along simulated plumes. We found after aging, at apparent steady state, that the pore aqueous phase U concentrations remained surprisingly high (up to 0.022 M), in close agreement with the recently reported high U concentrations (up to 0.027 M) in the vadose zone plume (1). The pH values of aged pore liquids varying from 10 to 7, consistent with the measured pH of the field borehole sediments varying from 9.5 to 7.4 (2), from near the plume source to the plume front. The direct measurements of aged pore liquids together with thermodynamic calculations using a Pitzer approach revealed that UO{sub 2}(CO{sub 3}){sub 3} {sup 4-} is the dominant aqueous U species within the plume body (pH 8-10), while Ca{sub 2}UO{sub 2}(CO{sub 3}){sub 3} and CaUO{sub 2}(CO{sub 3}){sub 3}{sup 2-} are also significant in the plume front vicinity (pH 7-8), consistent with that measured from field borehole porewaters (3). U solid phase speciation varies at different locations along the plume flow path and even within single sediment grains, because of location dependent pore and micropore solution chemistry. Our results suggest that high geochemical stability of UO{sub 2}(CO{sub 3}){sub 3}{sup 4-} in the original carbonate and sodium rich waste solution permits its continues migration and the field observed increases of U concentrations in the vadose zone and groundwater.

  9. Chaotic-dynamical conceptual model to describe fluid flow and contaminant transport in a fractured vadose zone. 1998 annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    'DOE faces the remediation of numerous contaminated sites, such as those at Hanford, INEEL, LLNL, and LBNL, where organic and/or radioactive wastes were intentionally or accidentally released to the vadose zone from surface spills, underground tanks, cribs, shallow ponds, and deep wells. Migration of these contaminants through the vadose zone has lead to the contamination of or threatens to contaminate underlying groundwater. A key issue in choosing a corrective action plan to clean up contaminated sites is to determine the location, total mass, mobility and travel time to receptors for contaminants moving in the vadose zone. These problems are difficult to solve in a technically defensible and accurate manner because contaminants travel downward intermittently through narrow pathways driven by variations in environmental conditions. These preferential pathways can be difficult to find and predict. The primary objective of this project is to determine if and when dynamical chaos theory can be used to investigate infiltration of fluid and contaminant transport in heterogeneous soils and fractured rocks. The objective of this project is being achieved through the following Activities (1) Evaluation of chaotic behavior of flow in laboratory and field experiments using methods from non-linear dynamics; (2) Evaluation of the impact these dynamics may have on contaminant transport through heterogeneous fractured rocks and soils, and how it can be used to guide remediation efforts; (3) Development of a conceptual model and mathematical and numerical algorithms for flow and transport, which incorporate both: (a) the spatial variability of heterogeneous porous and fractured media, and (b) the description of the temporal dynamics of flow and transport, which may be chaotic; and (4) Development of appropriate experimental field and laboratory techniques needed to detect diagnostic parameters for chaotic behavior of flow. This approach is based on the assumption that spatial

  10. 包气带土壤对石油烃的截留作用研究%Retention capacity of petroleum contamination in vadose zone

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨明星; 杨悦锁; 曹玉清; 夏雨波; 雷玉德

    2011-01-01

    包气带土壤对地表污染物的截留作用是地下水免受污染的一道天然屏障.土壤截留污染物的能力对地下水石油烃污染的治理起着关键作用,在对实际污染场地进行调查研究的基础上,采用土柱淋滤、吸附/解吸、石油挥发等室内模拟实验,研究包气带土壤对石油烃的截留作用及其影响因素.结果表明,细砂、中砂和粗砂3种土壤对石油烃的截留率分别为81.0%、75.2%和70.2%,土壤对石油烃的截留作用很强;土壤深度与总石油烃浓度之间呈负指数关系;不同土层厚度与其对石油烃截留率之间呈对数增长关系.吸附/解吸实验得出,细砂、中砂和粗砂的阻滞系数分别为2 020 554、1 791 444和1 295 855,阻滞系数越大,对石油烃的截留能力也就越强.挥发实验表明,细砂、中砂和粗砂中石油的挥发率分别为1.66%、3.67%和7.34%,石油的挥发作用较小.根据实验结果可知,当土壤表层石油烃进入包气带过程中,吸附/解吸对土壤的截留能力起着主导作用.实验结果为石油烃污染场地土壤及地下水石油烃污染修复治理提供了科学依据.%The vadose soil as a natural barrier could protect groundwater against pollutants from earth surface,so the retention capacity of vadose soil was a significant factor for groundwater petroleum pollution control. Based on the field investigation in petroleum contaminated site, combined with the results of soil column leaching, adsorption/desorption and volatilization experiment, this paper investigated the actual fate and transport of petroleum in vadose zone. Results showed that the vadose soil presented perfect retention capacity, PHCs retentate rate of fined sand,medium sand and coarse sand were 81.0%, 75.2% and 70.2% respectively. The relationship between PHCs concentration and the depth of soil can be expressed by a negative exponential equation c=ae-bd. The retardation factors of fined sand, medium sand and

  11. Geochemical and isotopic studies of unsaturated zone moisture and recharge processes in semi-arid conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Against the background of recent droughts in the Sahel and the overexploitation of scarce water resources, new and improved techniques for recharge estimation in arid lands are now needed. Results have been obtained from the Butana area of Sudan where rainfall is presently well below 200 mm a-1. Profiles of the unsaturated zone moisture were analysed for solutes and oxygen (δ18O) and hydrogen (δD) isotope ratios to estimate the extent of current recharge. Chloride concentrations were compared with those from rainfall inputs and the ratio used to estimate long term recharge values. Direct recharge proved to be below 1 mm a-1 and the unsaturated zone (25 m approx) contained around 2000 years storage. Isotopic profiles indicated that in some areas discharge from the water table was occurring. Within the Butana region of Sudan, therefore, current recharge rates in interfluve areas are effectively zero. Lateral recharge is however occurring, based on the presence of tritium, from the wadi systems. This forms the only replenishable resource which has been successfully exploited by traditional means, although under stress in the present dry period. The River Nile can be shown from isotopic results to recharge laterally some 10 km; but the deeper resources elsewhere are palaeowaters replenished during Holocene wet periods (6000-8000 BP). 2 refs, 6 figs

  12. Evaluating the role of soil variability on groundwater pollution and recharge at regional scale by integrating a process-based vadose zone model in a stochastic approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coppola, Antonio; Comegna, Alessandro; Dragonetti, Giovanna; Lamaddalena, Nicola; Zdruli, Pandi

    2013-04-01

    Interpreting and predicting the evolution of water resources and soils at regional scale are continuing challenges for natural scientists. Examples include non-point source (NPS) pollution of soil and surface and subsurface water from agricultural chemicals and pathogens, as well as overexploitation of groundwater resources. The presence and build up of NPS pollutants may be harmful for both soil and groundwater resources. The accumulation of salts and trace elements in soils can significantly impact crop productivity, while loading of salts, nitrates, trace elements and pesticides into groundwater supplies can deteriorate a source of drinking and irrigation water. Consequently, predicting the spatial distribution and fate of NPS pollutants in soils at applicative scales is now considered crucial for maintaining the fragile balance between crop productivity and the negative environmental impacts of NPS pollutants, which is a basis of sustainable agriculture. Soil scientists and hydrologists are regularly asked to assist state agencies to understand these critical environmental issues. The most frequent inquiries are related to the development of mathematical models needed for analyzing the impacts of alternative land-use and best management use and management of soil and water resources. Different modelling solutions exist, mainly differing on the role of the vadose zone and its horizontal and vertical variability in the predictive models. The vadose zone (the region from the soil surface to the groundwater surface) is a complex physical, chemical and biological ecosystem that controls the passage of NPS pollutants from the soil surface where they have been deposited or accumulated due to agricultural activities, to groundwater. Physically based distributed hydrological models require the internal variability of the vadose zone be explored at a variety of scales. The equations describing fluxes and storage of water and solutes in the unsaturated zone used in these

  13. System-Scale Model of Aquifer, Vadose Zone, and River Interactions for the Hanford 300 Area - Application to Uranium Reactive Transport

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rockhold, Mark L.; Bacon, Diana H.; Freedman, Vicky L.; Parker, Kyle R.; Waichler, Scott R.; Williams, Mark D.

    2013-10-01

    This report represents a synthesis and integration of basic and applied research into a system-scale model of the Hanford 300 Area groundwater uranium plume, supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Richland Operations (DOE-RL) office. The report integrates research findings and data from DOE Office of Science (DOE-SC), Office of Environmental Management (DOE-EM), and DOE-RL projects, and from the site remediation and closure contractor, Washington Closure Hanford, LLC (WCH). The three-dimensional, system-scale model addresses water flow and reactive transport of uranium for the coupled vadose zone, unconfined aquifer, and Columbia River shoreline of the Hanford 300 Area. The system-scale model of the 300 Area was developed to be a decision-support tool to evaluate processes of the total system affecting the groundwater uranium plume. The model can also be used to address “what if” questions regarding different remediation endpoints, and to assist in design and evaluation of field remediation efforts. For example, the proposed cleanup plan for the Hanford 300 Area includes removal, treatment, and disposal of contaminated sediments from known waste sites, enhanced attenuation of uranium hot spots in the vadose and periodically rewetted zone, and continued monitoring of groundwater with institutional controls. Illustrative simulations of polyphosphate infiltration were performed to demonstrate the ability of the system-scale model to address these types of questions. The use of this model in conjunction with continued field monitoring is expected to provide a rigorous basis for developing operational strategies for field remediation and for defining defensible remediation endpoints.

  14. Deep Vadose Zone–Applied Field Research Initiative Fiscal Year 2012 Annual Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wellman, Dawn M.; Truex, Michael J.; Johnson, Timothy C.; Bunn, Amoret L.; Golovich, Elizabeth C.

    2013-03-14

    This annual report describes the background of the Deep Vadose Zone-Applied Field Research Initiative, and some of the programmatic approaches and transformational technologies in groundwater and deep vadose zone remediation developed during fiscal year 2012.

  15. Arthropods in Natural Communities in Mescal Agave (Agave durangensis Gentry in an Arid Zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria P. Gonzalez-Castillo

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: The arthropods have a very important role in the arid zones due to their interactions with many organism and because they constituted an important element in the structure of the plant community. Nevertheless their importance there are few knowledge about the community of arthropods associated to vegetation in arid zones in the North of Mexico. The present study had the objective of determining the abundance, richness and diversity of arthropods in three localities where there are natural populations of mescal agave in the State of Durango, Mexico. Approach: In order to know the structure community of the arthropods associated to the mescal agave, we perform a sampling schedule during March 2008 to November 2010 by direct collection, using transects in three different localities with the presence of mescal agave. The relative abundance, species richness, Shannon’s diversity index, Pielou’s Index of evenness, Jaccard’s similitude and Simpson’s dominance indexes were determined. Results: A total of 4665 individual arthropods associated to mescal agave corresponding to 39 species were found. El Mezquital had the highest abundance and relative abundance (44.1% with 29 species. The mean species abundance was not significantly different between localities using Turkey’s test. The highest density per unit of area was found in El Mezquital (La Brena had the highest species diversity (1.89, evenness (0.61 and dominance (0.78. At the taxon level, Hymenoptera had the highest number of species represented (14, followed by Coleoptera (9 and hemiptera (5, with the remaining taxons with four, two and one species each. Conclusion: The greatest similitude was observed between La Brena and El Mezquital (46% which shared seven taxons, while the least similitude was observed between El Venado and La Brena (29%. Dominance/diversity curves are presented for each locality. The species Caulotops sp., Acutaspis agavis, Chilorus sp

  16. Different responses of MODIS-derived NDVI to root-zone soil moisture in semi-arid and humid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xianwei; Xie, Hongjie; Guan, Huade; Zhou, Xiaobing

    2007-06-01

    SummarySurface representation of the root-zone soil moisture is investigated so that feasibility of using optical remote sensing techniques to indirectly map root-zone soil moisture is assessed. Specifically, covariation of root-zone soil moisture with the normalized difference of vegetation index (NDVI) from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) is studied at three sites (New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas) selected from the Soil Climate Analysis Network (SCAN). The three sites represent two types of vegetation (shrub and grass) and two types of climate conditions: semi-arid (New Mexico and Arizona) and humid (Texas). Collocated deseasonalized time series of soil moistures at five depths (5 cm, 10 cm, 20 cm, 50 cm, and 100 cm) and NDVI (8-day composite in 250 m resolution) during the period of February 2000 through April 2004 were used for correlation analysis. Similar analysis was also conducted for the raw time series for comparison purposes. The linear regression of both the deseasonalized time series and the raw time series was used to estimate root-zone soil moisture. Results show that (1) the deseasonalized time series results in consistent and significant correlation (0.46-0.55) between NDVI and root-zone soil moisture at the three sites; (2) vegetation (NDVI) at the humid site needs longer time (10 days) to respond to soil moisture change than that at the semi-arid sites (5 days or less); (3) the time-series of root-zone soil moisture estimated by a linear regression model based on deseasonalized time series accounts for 42-71% of the observed soil moisture variations for the three sites; and (4) in the semi-arid region, root-zone soil moisture of shrub-vegetated area can be better estimated using NDVI than that of grass-vegetated area.

  17. Spatial and temporal variability of water salinity in an ephemeral, arid-zone river, central Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costelloe, Justin F.; Grayson, Rodger B.; McMahon, Thomas A.; Argent, Robert M.

    2005-10-01

    This study describes the spatial and temporal variability of water salinity of the Neales-Peake, an ephemeral river system in the arid Lake Eyre basin of central Australia. Saline to hypersaline waterholes occur in the lower reaches of the Neales-Peake catchment and lie downstream of subcatchments containing artesian mound springs. Flood pulses are fresh in the upper reaches of the rivers (deposits salt at the surface. This salt is then transported by infrequent runoff events into the main river system over long periods of time. The bank/floodplain store downstream of salt-affected catchments contains high salt concentrations, and this salt is mobilized during the flow recession when bank/floodplain storage discharges into the channel. The salinity of the recession increases as the percentage of flow derived from this storage increases. A simple conceptual model was developed for investigating the salt movement processes during flow events. The model structure for transport of water and salt in the Neales-Peake catchment generated similar spatial and temporal patterns of salt distribution in the floodplain/bank storage and water flow as observed during flow events in 2000-02. However, more field-data collection and modelling are required for improved calibration and description of salt transport and storage processes, particularly with regard to the number of stores required to represent the salt distribution in the upper zone of the soil profile.

  18. Microbial colonisation of chasmoendolithic habitats in the hyper-arid zone of the Atacama Desert

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. DiRuggiero

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Efforts in searching for microbial life in the driest part of Atacama Desert, Chile, revealed a small number of lithic habitats that can be considered as environmental refuges for life. In this study, we describe for the first time chasmoendolithic colonisation of fissures and cracks of rhyolite-gypsum and calcite rocks collected in the hyper-arid zone of the desert. The use of high-throughput sequencing revealed that the Atacama rock communities comprised a few dominant phylotypes and a number of less abundant taxa representing the majority of the total community diversity. The chasmoendolithic communities were dominated by Chroococcidiopsis species cyanobacteria and supported a number of heterotrophic bacterial lineages. Micro-climate data and geomorphic analysis of the mineral substrates suggested higher water availability in the calcite rocks in the form of enhanced water retention in the complex network of cracks and fissures of these rocks as well as increased occurrence of liquid water in the form of dewfall. These characteristics were associated with a diverse community of phototrophic and heterotrophic bacteria in the calcite chasmoendolithic ecosystem. This study is another example of the diversity of adaptive strategies at the limit for life and illustrates that rock colonisation is controlled by a complex set of factors.

  19. Microbial colonization of chasmoendolithic habitats in the hyper-arid zone of the Atacama Desert

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. DiRuggiero

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Efforts in searching for microbial life in the driest part of Atacama Desert, Chile, revealed a small number of lithic habitats that can be considered as environmental refuges for life. In this study, we describe for the first time chasmoendolithic colonization of fissures and cracks of rhyolite-gypsum and calcite rocks collected in the hyper-arid zone of the desert. The use of high-throughput sequencing revealed that the Atacama rock communities comprised a few dominant phylotypes and a number of less abundant taxa representing the majority of the total community diversity. The chasmoendolithic communities were dominated by Chroococcidiopsis species cyanobacteria and supported a number of novel heterotrophic bacteria. Micro-climate data and geomorphic analysis of the mineral substrates suggested higher water availability in the calcite rocks in the form of enhanced water retention in the complex network of cracks and fissures of these rocks as well as increased occurrence of liquid water in the form of dewfall. These characteristics were associated with a diverse community of phototrophic and heterotrophic bacteria in the calcite chasmoendolithic ecosystem. This study is another example of the diversity of adaptive strategies at the limit for life and illustrates that rock colonization is controlled by a complex set of factors.

  20. Urban market gardening and rodent-borne pathogenic leptospira in arid zones : a case study in Niamey, Niger

    OpenAIRE

    Gauthier Dobigny; Madougou Garba; Caroline Tatard; Anne Loiseau; Max Galan; Ibrahima Kadaouré; Jean-Pierre Rossi; Mathieu Picardeau; Eric Bertherat

    2015-01-01

    Leptospirosis essentially affects human following contact with rodent urine-contaminated water. As such, it was mainly found associated with rice culture, recreational activities and flooding. This is also the reason why it has mainly been investigated in temperate as well as warm and humid regions, while arid zones have been only very occasionally monitored for this disease. In particular, data for West African countries are extremely scarce. Here, we took advantage of an extensive survey of...

  1. The affect and importance of the Lichens in the Arid zone conservation and protection of water resource

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Yu-liang; ZHANG Yuan-ming; Adil Abdulla; Anwar Tumur; Abdulla Abbas

    2004-01-01

    Desertification has already become the global social problem. On the Arid zone it has closer relation with the frail ecotope. The system of the arid zone mountain belongs to crisscross between the farming ,forestry and husbandry . The frailty of the ecosystem manifests on the internal frailty, depends on the plant ,intensity of the contradictory between the landscape transitional and natural reservation area,physical weathering strong,the development of the soil surface is slowly but the erode of the rain ,soil erosion very grave. Lichens not only rein force the intensity and depth of the weathering of rocks and formation ,accelerate of the mineral weathering making and accumulating the organic compound, at the same time lichens have strongly water protection abilities and inestimable role in the prevent soil erosion. In this paper we were according to on-the-spot investigation and analysis of the laboratory from 1985 to now on the middle and west of the Mt . Tianshan and Mt. Altay kanas where mainly probe into the significance of the protection water and conservation water resources of the Arid zone. This research works will be provide scientific basis and reference of the government for put into effect ,improving environment of the mountain region ,major construction oasis ecotope and make great efforts for protection desert ecotope.

  2. Non conventional livestock feeds of arid zone of India: Potential need to tap effectively and efficiently

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    bulk processing and detoxification facility. Since most of those plants are having ethno veterinary importance, so there is dire need to explore hidden medicinal attributes in those resources, which can supplement nutritional value of feeds. Combining traditional biomass with recent technology can bring forth a potential option for their effective incorporation and efficient utilization. This new focus on their nutritional values and medicinal and industrial use will prompt and attract future conservation and propagation of these resources. This in turn can solve nutrient crisis for livestock in arid zones of India along with improving socio-economic status of the poor and marginal farmers

  3. State of radionuclides in seawater. Comparison of natural stable and artificial radioactive isotope s of mercury and zinc in natural waters of the arid zone of the USSR

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper studies the state of stable and artificial radioactive isotopes of merury and zinc in natural waters of the arid zone of the USSR by radioactivity and radiochemical methods. Convergent results have been obtained for the dissolved forms of mercury and zinc in natural waters of the arid zone in a comparison of the results of radioactivation analysis and laboratory simulation using the radionuclides mercury-203 and zinc-65

  4. Real-time monitoring of nitrate transport in deep vadose zone under a crop field – implications for groundwater protection

    OpenAIRE

    Turkeltaub, T.; D. Kurtzman; Dahan, O.

    2016-01-01

    Nitrate is considered the most common non-point pollutant in groundwater. It is often attributed to agricultural management, when excess application of nitrogen fertilizer leaches below the root zone and is eventually transported as nitrate through the unsaturated zone to the water table. A lag time of years to decades between processes occurring in the root zone and their final imprint on groundwater quality prevents proper decision-making on land use and groundwater-resource management. In ...

  5. Chromium(VI) generation in vadose zone soils and alluvial sediments of the southwestern Sacramento Valley, California: a potential source of geogenic Cr(VI) to groundwater

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Christopher T.; Morrison, Jean M.; Goldhaber, Martin B.; Ellefsen, Karl J.

    2011-01-01

    Concentrations of geogenic Cr(VI) in groundwater that exceed the World Health Organization’s maximum contaminant level for drinking water (50 μg L−1) occur in several locations globally. The major mechanism for mobilization of this Cr(VI) at these sites is the weathering of Cr(III) from ultramafic rocks and its subsequent oxidation on Mn oxides. This process may be occurring in the southern Sacramento Valley of California where Cr(VI) concentrations in groundwater can approach or exceed 50 μg L−1. To characterize Cr geochemistry in the area, samples from several soil auger cores (approximately 4 m deep) and drill cores (approximately 25 m deep) were analyzed for total concentrations of 44 major, minor and trace elements, Cr associated with labile Mn and Fe oxides, and Cr(VI). Total concentrations of Cr in these samples ranged from 140 to 2220 mg per kg soil. Between 9 and 70 mg per kg soil was released by selective extractions that target Fe oxides, but essentially no Cr was associated with the abundant reactive Mn oxides (up to ~1000 mg hydroxylamine-reducible Mn per kg soil was present). Both borehole magnetic susceptibility surveys performed at some of the drill core sites and relative differences between Cr released in a 4-acid digestion versus total Cr (lithium metaborate fusion digestion) suggest that the majority of total Cr in the samples is present in refractory chromite minerals transported from ultramafic exposures in the Coast Range Mountains. Chromium(VI) in the samples studied ranged from 0 to 42 μg kg−1, representing a minute fraction of total Cr. Chromium(VI) content was typically below detection in surface soils (top 10 cm) where soil organic matter was high, and increased with increasing depth in the soil auger cores as organic matter decreased. Maximum concentrations of Cr(VI) were up to 3 times greater in the deeper drill core samples than the shallow auger cores. Although Cr(VI) in these vadose zone soils and sediments was only a

  6. Cave breakdown by vadose weathering.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osborne R. Armstrong L.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Vadose weathering is a significant mechanism for initiating breakdown in caves. Vadose weathering of ore bodies, mineral veins, palaeokarst deposits, non-carbonate keystones and impure, altered or fractured bedrock, which is intersected by caves, will frequently result in breakdown. Breakdown is an active, ongoing process. Breakdown occurs throughout the vadose zone, and is not restricted to large diameter passages, or to cave ceilings. The surfaces of disarticulated blocks are commonly coated, rather than having fresh broken faces, and blocks continue to disintegrate after separating from the bedrock. Not only gypsum, but also hydromagnesite and aragonite are responsible for crystal wedging. It is impossible to study or identify potential breakdown foci by surface surveys alone, in-cave observation and mapping are essential.

  7. Modelling streamflow in a large anastomosing river of the arid zone, Diamantina River, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costelloe, J. F.; Grayson, R. B.; McMahon, T. A.

    2006-05-01

    Anastomosing rivers form a subset of the anabranching family of river types and provide considerable challenges to modelling of their streamflow because of complex flow patterns across greatly varying floodplain widths. Estimates of distributed flow data are required for catchment management purposes and ecological studies of these rivers but are hindered by a paucity of measured discharge data. A grid-based, semi-distributed, conceptual model structure is applied to a 330 km reach of the arid zone Diamantina River of central Australia. Model complexity is constrained by data availability with only a single gauging station located at the downstream end of the reach to provide discharge data for model calibration. The model uses a simple conceptual bucket structure and accounts for exceptionally high transmission losses as well as flow patterns and wave speeds that vary with discharge within the reach. The intricate flow patterns across the floodplains widths of up to 50 km are simulated using a grid-based structure that required the following features: (i) cell connections that are explicitly defined using a code that allows for multi-directional flow from a cell; and (ii) each cell having a binary flow pattern, with the second connection pattern being triggered when the surface storage of the cell exceeds a calibrated level for a given land-type. Satellite images were used to define the flow paths, and hence cell connection patterns, utilised by various sized floods. The model was able to provide acceptable simulation of large floods but with decreasing model performance in the simulation of small to medium sized floods. Simulation suggested that incorrectly defined flow paths for the smaller floods were a major factor in this decreased performance. The capability of the model would be improved by further detailed mapping, using satellite imagery, of spatial patterns of inundation as discharge varies.

  8. Transitions in Land Use Architecture under Multiple Human Driving Forces in a Semi-Arid Zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Issa Ouedraogo

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study aimed to detect the main shifts in land-use architecture and assess the factors behind the changes in typical tropical semi-arid land in Burkina Faso. Three sets of time-series LANDSAT data over a 23-year period were used to detect land use changes and their underpinning drivers in multifunctional but vulnerable ecologies. Group discussions in selected villages were organized for mapping output interpretation and collection of essential drivers of change as perceived by local populations. Results revealed profound changes and transitions during the study period. During the last decade, shrub and wood savannahs exhibited high net changes (39% and −37% respectively with a weak net positive change for cropland (only 2%, while cropland and shrub savannah exhibited high swap (8% and 16%. This suggests that the area of cropland remained almost unchanged but was subject to relocation, wood savannah decreased drastically, and shrub savannah increased exponentially. Cropland exhibited a null net persistence while shrub and wood savannahs exhibited positive and negative net persistence (1.91 and −10.24, respectively, indicating that there is movement toward agricultural intensification and wood savannah tended to disappear to the benefit of shrub savannah. Local people are aware of the changes that have occurred and support the idea that illegal wood cutting and farming are inappropriate farming practices associated with immigration; absence of alternative cash generation sources, overgrazing and increasing demand for wood energy are driving the changes in their ecosystems. Policies that integrate restoration and conservation of natural ecosystems and promote sustainable agroforestry practices in the study zone are highly recommended.

  9. GEOPHYSICS AND SITE CHARACTERIZATION AT THE HANFORD SITE THE SUCCESSFUL USE OF ELECTRICAL RESISTIVITY TO POSITION BOREHOLES TO DEFINE DEEP VADOSE ZONE CONTAMINATION - 11509

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    GANDER MJ; LEARY KD; LEVITT MT; MILLER CW

    2011-01-14

    Historic boreholes confirmed the presence of nitrate and radionuclide contaminants at various intervals throughout a more than 60 m (200 ft) thick vadose zone, and a 2010 electrical resistivity survey mapped the known contamination and indicated areas of similar contaminants, both laterally and at depth; therefore, electrical resistivity mapping can be used to more accurately locate characterization boreholes. At the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in eastern Washington, production of uranium and plutonium resulted in the planned release of large quantities of contaminated wastewater to unlined excavations (cribs). From 1952 until 1960, the 216-U-8 Crib received approximately 379,000,000 L (100,000,000 gal) of wastewater containing 25,500 kg (56,218 lb) uranium; 1,029,000 kg (1,013 tons) of nitrate; 2.7 Ci of technetium-99; and other fission products including strontium-90 and cesium-137. The 216-U-8 Crib reportedly holds the largest inventory of waste uranium of any crib on the Hanford Site. Electrical resistivity is a geophysical technique capable of identifying contrasting physical properties; specifically, electrically conductive material, relative to resistive native soil, can be mapped in the subsurface. At the 216-U-8 Crib, high nitrate concentrations (from the release of nitric acid [HNO{sub 3}] and associated uranium and other fission products) were detected in 1994 and 2004 boreholes at various depths, such as at the base of the Crib at 9 m (30 ft) below ground surface (bgs) and sporadically to depths in excess of 60 m (200 ft) bgs. These contaminant concentrations were directly correlative with the presence of observed low electrical resistivity responses delineated during the summer 2010 geophysical survey. Based on this correlation and the recently completed mapping of the electrically conductive material, additional boreholes are planned for early 2011 to identify nitrate and radionuclide contamination: (a) throughout the entire vertical length of the

  10. Deuterium and 18O as indicators of evaporation losses from rice crops in semi-arid climate zones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rice requires the highest water application rate of any of the major grain crops, with total water demand per unit area of crop at least twice that of maize or wheat. Most of the water used for rice production in semi-arid climates is lost to the atmosphere through the combined effects of evaporation and transpiration. Evaporation leads to substantial enrichment of residual liquid phase water molecules containing heavier isotopes (deuterium and 18O) because of preferential loss to the atmosphere of lighter isotope molecules. In contrast, transpiration leads to little net enrichment of the heavier isotopes in residual waters. This difference between the effects on the stable isotopic composition of surface water of the two loss modes to the atmosphere offers the potential to estimate arid zone evaporation losses independent of transpiration, both in natural waters, such as swamps, and in regional scale irrigation networks. 3 refs, 2 figs

  11. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediment: Borehole 299-W23-19 [SX-115] in the S-SX Waste Management Area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R. Jeffrey; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Lanigan, David C.; Gee, Glendon W.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Clayton, Ray E.; Legore, Virginia L.; O' Hara, Matthew J.; Brown, Christopher F.; Last, George V.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Burke, Deborah S.; Wilson, Teresa C.; Williams, Bruce A.

    2008-09-11

    This report was revised in September 2008 to remove acid-extractable sodium data from Tables 4.15 and 4.19. The sodium data was removed due to potential contamination introduced during the acid extraction process. The rest of the text remains unchanged from the original report issued in February 2002. The Tank Farm Vadose Zone Project is led by CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. Their goals include defining risks from past and future single-shell tank farm activities, identifying and evaluating the efficacy of interim measures, and collecting geotechnical information and data. The purpose of these activities is to support future decisions made by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) regarding near-term operations, future waste retrieval, and final closure activities for the single-shell tank Waste Management Areas. To help in this effort, CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. contracted with scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to analyze sediment samples collected from borehole 299-W23-19.

  12. Influence of Wetting and Mass Transfer Properties of Organic Chemical Mixtures in Vadose Zone Materials on Groundwater Contamination by Nonaqueous Phase Liquids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Charles J Werth; Albert J Valocchi, Hongkyu Yoon

    2011-05-21

    Previous studies have found that organic acids, organic bases, and detergent-like chemicals change surface wettability. The wastewater and NAPL mixtures discharged at the Hanford site contain such chemicals, and their proportions likely change over time due to reaction-facilitated aging. The specific objectives of this work were to (1) determine the effect of organic chemical mixtures on surface wettability, (2) determine the effect of organic chemical mixtures on CCl4 volatilization rates from NAPL, and (3) accurately determine the migration, entrapment, and volatilization of organic chemical mixtures. Five tasks were proposed to achieve the project objectives. These are to (1) prepare representative batches of fresh and aged NAPL-wastewater mixtures, (2) to measure interfacial tension, contact angle, and capillary pressure-saturation profiles for the same mixtures, (3) to measure interphase mass transfer rates for the same mixtures using micromodels, (4) to measure multiphase flow and interphase mass transfer in large flow cell experiments, all using the same mixtures, and (5) to modify the multiphase flow simulator STOMP in order to account for updated P-S and interphase mass transfer relationships, and to simulate the impact of CCl4 in the vadose zone on groundwater contamination. Results and findings from these tasks and summarized in the attached final report.

  13. Aquifer and Vadose Zone Pollution Determined From Geoelectrical Measurements With Multi- Electrode Wells and Surface Multi-Profiling

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Lima, O. A.; Pereira, P. D.

    2007-05-01

    surface and within wells, were used both to characterize the plume and to estimate changes in water saturation and water chemistry bellow the water table and throughout the upper vadose section of the Marizal- São Sebastião aquifer system. Well data were acquired during three different campaigns of 2004-2006 years, covering a complete seasonal cycle. The results are quantitativelyinterpreted using the volume conductivity approach described by Lima et al. (2005) extended for condiction of partial water saturation.

  14. Climatic and Hydrological Changes of Past 100 Years in Asian Arid Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Zhaodong; Salnikov, Vitaliy; Xu, Changchun

    2014-05-01

    The Asian Arid Zone (AAZ) is here defined to include the following regions: northwestern China, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Generally speaking, the AAZ has experienced a temperature rising during the past 100 years that was significantly faster than the global average (0.14 ºC per decade). Specifically, the rate was 0.39 ºC per decade in northwestern China (1950-2010), 0.26 ºC per decade in Kazakhstan (1936-2005), 0.22 ºC per decade in Mongolia (1940-2010), 0.29 ºC per decade in Uzbekistan (1950-2005), 0.18 ºC per decade in Turkmenistan (1961-1995). It should be noted that the mountainous parts of AAZ seems to have experienced a slower rate of temperature rising. For example, the rate was 0.10 ºC per decade in Tajikistan (1940-2005) and was 0.08 ºC per decade in Kyrgyzstan (1890-2005). Precipitation has a slight increasing trend in northwestern China, but it has fluctuated along a near-constant line in the rest of the AAZ. Hydrological data from high-elevation basin show that the runoff has been increasing primarily as a result of rising temperature that caused increases in ice melting. A natural decreasing trend of surface runoff in low-elevation basins is undeniable and the decreasing trend is attributable to intensified evaporation under warming conditions. It is true that the total amount of runoff in the Tianshan Mountains and the associated basins has been increased primarily as a result of temperature rising-resulted increases in ice melting. But, approaching to the turning point of glacier-melting supplies to runoff will pose a great threat to socio-economic sustainability and to ecological security. The turning point refers to the transition from increasing runoff to decreasing runoff within ice melting supplied watersheds under a warming climate.

  15. Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo Inversion of Time-Lapse Geophysical Data To Characterize the Vadose Zone

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Scholer, Marie; Irving, James; Zibar, Majken Caroline Looms;

    Geophysical methods have the potential to provide valuable information on hydrological properties in the unsaturated zone. In particular, time-lapse geophysical data, when coupled with a hydrological model and inverted stochastically, may allow for the effective estimation of subsurface hydraulic...

  16. Investigation of groundwater recharge in arid environments through continuous monitoring of water fluxes within the unsaturated zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kallioras, A.; Reshid, M.; Dietrich, P.; Rausch, R.; Al-Saud, M.; Schuth, C.

    2012-04-01

    For groundwater resources management in arid environments the rate of aquifer replenishment due to groundwater recharge is one of the most important factors and unfortunately also one of the most difficult to derive with sufficient accuracy. In general, the potential evaporation by far exceeds the precipitation limiting groundwater recharge. Unsaturated zone processes play a key role in groundwater recharge as the thickness of the unsaturated zone in arid areas may reach several thenth of meters, compared to millimeters or centimeters of assumed groundwater recharge per year. This indicates the complexity of the problem. Overcoming the field capacity along the infiltration path to initiate downward movement on such a long distance to the groundwater table would require the recharge of tenths or even hundreds of years. Also, precipitation is highly variable in space, time, and intensity and may be followed by hot and dry conditions leading to an alternation of downward and upward movement of water. For this study, field sites in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (located app. 200km SW of Riyadh) were selected that represent typical settings for potential groundwater recharge in arid regions, i.e. sand dune areas and wadi beds. In the field campaign vibro-coring techniques applying direct-push technologies (Geoprobe 7720DT) were used to retrieve undisturbed soil sampling down to depths of about 15 m in the unsaturated zone. The drilled boreholes were consequently used for the installation of specially designed flat cable TDR sensors that provide continuous monitoring of the soil moisture content in high vertical resolution. In addition, temperature sensors were installed to monitor temperature fluctuations in the unsaturated zone. We present data on the analyses of soil samples as well as on the measured water content evolution over time as determined by the TDR flat band cables. Results show, that significant changes in water content occurred within the observation time

  17. Seed weight and germination behavior of the submerged plant Potamogeton pectinatus in the arid zone of northwest China

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Zhongqiang; Lu, Wei; YANG, Lei; Kong, Xianghong; Deng, Xuwei

    2015-01-01

    Variation in seed weight is common within and among plant species, but few studies have attempted to document the pattern of seed weight and germination attributes for aquatic macrophytes at a large scale. This study examined within-species variation in seed weight and germination attributes and the effects of environmental factors on seed traits of the submerged plant Potamogeton pectinatus in the arid zone of northwest China. Our results showed that the average seed weight was 0.24 g per 10...

  18. An integrated assessment of the impact of precipitation and groundwater on vegetation growth in arid and semiarid areas

    OpenAIRE

    Zhu, Lin; Gong, Huili; Dai, Zhenxue; Xu, Tingbao; Su, Xiaosi

    2014-01-01

    Increased demand for water resources together with the influence of climate change has degraded water conditions which support vegetation in many parts of the world, especially in arid and semiarid areas. This study develops an integrated framework to assess the impact of precipitation and groundwater on vegetation growth in the Xiliao River Plain of northern China. The integrated framework systematically combines remote sensing technology with water flow modeling in the vadose zone and field...

  19. Monitoring the response of arid zone hydrology to environmental change by means of the stable isotope composition of groundwaters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Under arid conditions (where rain is deficient), recharge to groundwaters occurs only when some degree of surface flow precedes the infiltration process. Such a formation pattern imposes a characteristic and identifiable isotopic composition on the desert water sources, involving both a selection of the more intense rainfall events which contribute preferentially to surface flooding and an isotopic fractionation which accompanies the surface exposure phase of the recharge process. Because of this set of circumstances, the formation of groundwaters under an arid climate is extremely sensitive to any environmental change and, in particular, to changes in the pattern of land usage, the vegetation cover and the surface morphology. Such changes can result form climatic change on a global scale or from local anthropogenic causes through agricultural development or urbanization. The anthropogenic effect on the process of groundwater formation is a function of the scale of operation. On a small scale, water is used up and diverted from recharge pathways. However, large scale agricultural or urban development in the arid zone will usually enhance the rate of groundwater recharge. The changes in the hydrological mechanisms imprint a different isotopic signature on the groundwaters and thus the isotope composition of the water resources can serve as a monitor of such changes. (author). 17 refs, 3 figs, 3 tabs

  20. Energy use pattern in production agriculture of a typical village in arid zone - Part III

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, H. E-mail: hsingh11@rediffmail.com; Mishra, D.; Nahar, N.M

    2004-09-01

    India has 31.71 Mha of hot arid areas, of which 61.8% is in Western Rajasthan, commonly known as the 'Thar Desert'. A detailed study of the energy use pattern in production agriculture for a representative village, Pemasar, district Bikaner of zone II (200 mm/yr {<=} annual rainfall < 300 mm/yr) has been conducted. Out of the total geographical area (945.7 ha) of the village, 693.6 ha is cultivable land. The main crops grown in the village are cluster bean, moth bean, groundnut, green gram (Kharif), wheat, mustard, gram, barley and rocket salad (Rabi). In general, Kharif crops are grown as rain fed crops, but due to low rainfall in the zone and the presence of the Indira Gandhi Canal, even Kharif crops are raised under irrigated conditions. However, the area covered under irrigation is meagre as the availability of canal water is very much limited and uncertain. Operation wise, the total energy consumed for rain fed Kharif crops is minimum (1187.6 MJ/ha) for moth bean and maximum (1261.9 MJ/ha) for cluster bean, while for irrigated crops, it is minimum (2847.3 MJ/ha) for moth bean, and maximum (12,809.6 MJ/ha) for groundnut. The average specific energy for cultivation of cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 11.7, 7.5, 7.7, 7.4 and 11.2 MJ/ha, respectively. Operation wise, the energy consumed for Rabi crops is minimum (3855.6 MJ/ha) for rocket salad followed by 4779.4 MJ/ha for mustard, 4845.2 MJ/ha for gram and maximum (7953.2 MJ/ha) for wheat. The average specific energy for cultivation of wheat, gram, mustard and rocket salad were 11.4, 16.5, 13.2 and 13.7 MJ/ha, respectively. The average values of estimated energy ratio for cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 2.1, 0.5, 3.4, 3.5 and 3.0, respectively. This suggests that the moth bean crop is more remunerating to the farmers in Kharif as compared to

  1. Energy use pattern in production agriculture of a typical village in arid zone - Part III

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    India has 31.71 Mha of hot arid areas, of which 61.8% is in Western Rajasthan, commonly known as the 'Thar Desert'. A detailed study of the energy use pattern in production agriculture for a representative village, Pemasar, district Bikaner of zone II (200 mm/yr ≤ annual rainfall < 300 mm/yr) has been conducted. Out of the total geographical area (945.7 ha) of the village, 693.6 ha is cultivable land. The main crops grown in the village are cluster bean, moth bean, groundnut, green gram (Kharif), wheat, mustard, gram, barley and rocket salad (Rabi). In general, Kharif crops are grown as rain fed crops, but due to low rainfall in the zone and the presence of the Indira Gandhi Canal, even Kharif crops are raised under irrigated conditions. However, the area covered under irrigation is meagre as the availability of canal water is very much limited and uncertain. Operation wise, the total energy consumed for rain fed Kharif crops is minimum (1187.6 MJ/ha) for moth bean and maximum (1261.9 MJ/ha) for cluster bean, while for irrigated crops, it is minimum (2847.3 MJ/ha) for moth bean, and maximum (12,809.6 MJ/ha) for groundnut. The average specific energy for cultivation of cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 11.7, 7.5, 7.7, 7.4 and 11.2 MJ/ha, respectively. Operation wise, the energy consumed for Rabi crops is minimum (3855.6 MJ/ha) for rocket salad followed by 4779.4 MJ/ha for mustard, 4845.2 MJ/ha for gram and maximum (7953.2 MJ/ha) for wheat. The average specific energy for cultivation of wheat, gram, mustard and rocket salad were 11.4, 16.5, 13.2 and 13.7 MJ/ha, respectively. The average values of estimated energy ratio for cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 2.1, 0.5, 3.4, 3.5 and 3.0, respectively. This suggests that the moth bean crop is more remunerating to the farmers in Kharif as compared to cluster bean

  2. The impact of climatic variability over the period 1961- 1990 on the soil water balance of upland soils in the North East Arid Zone of Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    Hess, Tim M.

    1991-01-01

    Over the period 1961 – 90 the North East Arid Zone of Nigeria experienced a decline in annual rainfall totals and increased aridity which placed increasing pressure on rain fed, millet-based farming systems. The changes in seasonal rainfall total and distribution have been examined and it has been shown that the rate of decline has been consistent across the region. The decline has been dominated by reduction in the number of rain days during the middle of the rainy season and ...

  3. Geochemical evolution of highly alkaline and saline tank waste plumes during seepage through vadose zone sediments 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Jiamin; Tokunaga, Tetsu K.; Larsen, Joern T.; Serne, R. Jeff

    2004-02-01

    Leakage of highly saline and alkaline radioactive waste from storage tanks into underlying sediments is a serious environmental problem at the Hanford Site in Washington State. This study focuses on geochemical evolution of tank waste plumes resulting from interactions between the waste solution and sediment. A synthetic tank waste solution was infused into unsaturated Hanford sediment columns (0.2, 0.6, and 2 m) maintained at 70°C to simulate the field contamination process. Spatially and temporally resolved geochemical profiles of the waste plume were obtained. Thorough OH - neutralization (from an initial pH 14 down to 6.3) was observed. Three broad zones of pore solutions were identified to categorize the dominant geochemical reactions: the silicate dissolution zone (pH > 10), pH-neutralized zone (pH 10 to 6.5), and displaced native sediment pore water (pH 6.5 to 8). Elevated concentrations of Si, Fe, and K in plume fluids and their depleted concentrations in plume sediments reflected dissolution of primary minerals within the silicate dissolution zone. The very high Na concentrations in the waste solution resulted in rapid and complete cation exchange, reflected in high concentrations of Ca and Mg at the plume front. The plume-sediment profiles also showed deposition of hydrated solids and carbonates. Fair correspondence was obtained between these results and analyses of field borehole samples from a waste plume at the Hanford Site. Results of this study provide a well-defined framework for understanding waste plumes in the more complex field setting and for understanding geochemical factors controlling transport of contaminant species carried in waste solutions that leaked from single-shell storage tanks in the past.

  4. High characterization of water-air flow transport in the vadose zone of geological carbonate formation from Radon-222

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: Complex process in the unsaturated zone affect the transfers of fluids.Within the context of an integrated study on the process of the meteoric diagenesis in a carbonate formation, we try to determine the time transit of fluids. The aim of this study is to see whether radon 222 is a good natural tracer of fluids vertical diffusivity. Radon is an inert radioactive gas. It has three isotopes 222Rn, 220Rn, 219Rn. 222Rn comes from the decay of 238U. The 222Rn half-life (3.82 days) allows it to be transported far from its origin. Temporal variations of radon activity in soil gas depend on several factors such as meteorological variables (temperature, rainfall, atmospheric pressure, etc) and geological variables (concentration of radium in the soil, porosity, grain size, tectonic activity, etc.). The radon was measured on an experimental site : soil (0.40 meter thick) is lying on the Oligocene limestone (30 meters thick). This limestone was exploited in underground quarry with several levels (7 meters and 10 meters deep). Radon product comes from soil clays and limons for the major part and quaternary loess trapped in the limestone karstic framework for an other part. In the unsaturated zone, radon moves vertically in the gaseous phase under piston effect of the liquid phase. It moves as well dissolve in the liquid phase. The underground quarry atmosphere of the two levels shows variations of radon concentration in the time. Results show correlation between the maxima of effective precipitations and the maxima ones of radon concentration in the underground quarry atmosphere with a seven months dephasing. Dephasing between the maxima of effective precipitations and the maxima of moisture in the porous rock is only five months. This correlation leads to a diffusion model of radon in the unsaturated zone. (author)

  5. Environmental isotope profiles of the soil water in loess unsaturated zone in semi-arid areas of china

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    According to the IAEA Research Contract No. 9402, soil cores CHN/97 and CHN/98 were taken from loess deposits of China in Inner-Mongolia and Shanxi Province, respectively. Isotope and chemical constituents of the interstitial water from these cores, compared with data obtained from the same places before, were used for estimating the infiltration rate. Tritium profiles from the loess unsaturated zone show clearly defined peaks of 1963 fallout. It implies that piston-flow model is the dominant process for soil water movement in the highly homogeneous loess deposits. It has been shown from this study that vertical infiltration through the unsaturated zone accounts for 12%-13% of the annual precipitation and perhaps is not the main mechanism of groundwater recharge in semi-arid loess areas. (author)

  6. Characterization of Vadose Zone Sediments Below the T Tank Farm: Boreholes C4104, C4105, 299-W10-196 and RCRA Borehole 299-W11-39

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serne, R JEFFREY.; Bjornstad, Bruce N.; Horton, Duane G.; Lanigan, David C.; Lindenmeier, Clark W.; Lindberg, Michael J.; Clayton, Ray E.; LeGore, Virginia L.; Geiszler, Keith N.; Baum, Steven R.; Valenta, Michelle M.; Kutnyakov, Igor V.; Vickerman, Tanya S.; Orr, Robert D.; Brown, Christopher F.

    2004-09-01

    This report contains geologic, geochemical, and physical characterization data collected on sediment recovered from boreholes C4104 and C4105 in the T Tank Farm, and 299-W-11-39 installed northeast of the T Tank Farm. The measurements on sediments from borehole C4104 are compared to a nearby borehole 299-W10-196 placed through the plume from the 1973 T-106 tank leak. This report also presents the data in the context of sediment types, the vertical extent of contamination, the migration potential of the contaminants, and the likely source of the contamination in the vadose zone and groundwater below the T Tank Farm. Sediment samples were characterized for: moisture content, gamma-emission radionuclides, one-to-one water extracts (which provide soil pH, electrical conductivity, cation, trace metal, radionuclide and anion data), total carbon and inorganic carbon content, and 8 M nitric acid extracts (which provide a measure of the total leachable sediment content of contaminants). Overall, our analyses showed that common ion exchange is a key mechanism that influences the distribution of contaminants within that portion of the vadose zone affected by tank liquor. We observed slight elevated pH values in samples from borehole C4104. The sediments from the three boreholes, C4104, C4105, and 299-W10-196 do show that sodium-, nitrate-, and sulfate-dominated fluids are present below tank T-106 and have formed a salt plume. The fluids are more dilute than tank fluids observed below tanks at the SX and BX Tank Farms and slightly less than those from the most saline porewater found in contaminated TX tank farm sediments. The boreholes could not penetrate below the gravel-rich strata of the Ringold Formation Wooded Island member (Rwi) (refusal was met at about 130 ft bgs); therefore, we could not identify the maximum vertical penetration of the tank related plumes. The moisture content, pH, electrical conductivity, nitrate, and technetium-99 profiles versus depth in the three

  7. Influence of biological soil crusts at different successional stages in the implantation of biogeochemical cycles in arid and semiarid zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil-Sotres, F.; Miralles, I.; Canton-Castilla, Y.; Domingo, F.; Leiros, M. C.; Trasar-Cepeda, C.

    2012-04-01

    Influence of biological soil crusts at different successional stages in the implantation of biogeochemical cycles in arid and semiarid zones I. Miralles1, F. Gil-Sotres2, Y. Cantón-Castilla3, F. Domingo1, M.C. Leirós2, C. Trasar-Cepeda4 1 Experimental Estation of Arid Zones (CSIC), E-04230 La Cañada de San Urbano, Almería, Spain. 2 Departamento Edafología y Química Agrícola, Grupo de Evaluación de la Calidad del Suelo, Unidad Asociada CSIC, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, E-15782 Santiago de Compostela, Spain. 3 University of Almería, Departamento de Edafología y Química Agrícola, E-04230-La Cañada de San Urbano, Almería, Spain. 4 Departamento Bioquímica del Suelo, IIAG-CSIC, Apartado 122, E-15708 Santiago de Compostela, Spain. Crusts (BSCs) are formed by a close association between soil particles and cyanobacteria, algae, lichens, bryophytes and microfungi in varying proportions. Their habitat is within or immediately on top of the uppermost millimetres of the soil and are the predominant surface cover in arid and semiarid zones. Among the diverse functions developed by BSCs in the ecosystem (hydrology, erosion, soil properties, etc.), one of the most important is its role in nutrient cycling. Within arid and semiarid environments, BSCs have been termed 'mantles of fertility' being considered hotspots of biogeochemical inputs, fixing C, N and P above- and below-ground. However, there are differences in N and C fixation rates between BSCs types. Early successional BSCs, dominated by cyanobacterial species, fix lower quantities of C and N than mature BSCs dominated by lichens. Although the positive effects of BSCs on biogeochemical soil cycles are widely accepted, no previous studies have evaluated the activities of the enzymes involved in C, N and P cycles of BSCs and how they are affected by the successional stage of the BSC. In this work, performed in the Tabernas desert (SE Spain), we studied the hydrolase enzymes

  8. Human response and adaptation to drought in the arid zone: lessons from southern Africa

    OpenAIRE

    W. R.J. Dean; S. J. Milton; P.J. O'Farrell; P. M.L. Anderson

    2009-01-01

    Human adaptation and response to drought is primarily through evasion or endurance. A review of historical agricultural practices in southern Africa demonstrates evidence of drought evasion response strategies in well-established transhumance routes, where herders move livestock on a seasonal basis in order to exploit resources subject to different climatic regimes. European settlers to the arid regions of South Africa quickly recognised the necessity of these evasion options to survive droug...

  9. Evolution of subterranean diving beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae: Hydroporini, Bidessini) in the arid zone of Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leys, Remko; Watts, Chris H S; Cooper, Steve J B; Humphreys, William F

    2003-12-01

    Calcrete aquifers in arid inland Australia have recently been found to contain the world's most diverse assemblage of subterranean diving beetles (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae). In this study we test whether the adaptive shift hypothesis (ASH) or the climatic relict hypothesis (CRH) is the most likely mode of evolution for the Australian subterranean diving beetles by using a phylogeny based on two sequenced fragments of mitochondrial genes (CO1 and 16S-tRNA-ND1) and linearized using a relaxed molecular clock method. Most individual calcrete aquifers contain an assemblage of diving beetle species of distantly related lineages and/or a single pair of sister species that significantly differ in size and morphology. Evolutionary transitions from surface to subterranean life took place in a relatively small time frame between nine and four million years ago. Most of the variation in divergence times of the sympatric sister species is explained by the variation in latitude of the localities, which correlates with the onset of aridity from the north to the south and with an aridity maximum in the Early Pliocene (five mya). We conclude that individual calcrete aquifers were colonized by several distantly related diving beetle lineages. Several lines of evidence from molecular clock analyses support the CRH, indicating that all evolutionary transitions took place during the Late Miocene and Early Pliocene as a result of aridification. PMID:14761060

  10. A Coupled Formulation for Vadose Zone Transport of Multiple Gas Species With Plant Exchange Under Variable Gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stothoff, S. A.

    2008-12-01

    Most plants require a balance between water availability and oxygen availability in the rooting zone. Procedures for raising plants under microgravity conditions, such as might be encountered in long-term space missions, face a special challenge: water redistribution is not affected by gravity, leading to difficulty in maintaining both water and oxygen levels in the rooting zone because flow is dominated by capillary properties. The plant substrate used for microgravity conditions is typically a coarse material that drains extremely rapidly under the fluctuating gravity conditions (0 to 1.8 G) experienced on KC-135 aircraft during flight parabolas. To evaluate control strategies for meeting plant water uptake and respiration needs under microgravity and to characterize flow redistribution under fluctuating gravity, a single formulation considering partial to full saturation was developed to cover this range of conditions. The fully coupled system of equations considers N>1 gaseous species, including water, that are all constituents in the liquid phase and in equilibrium between the gas and liquid phases where both phases are present. Plants are considered as separate quasi steady continua. Plant uptake and respiration, when considered, are defined using (possibly age dependent) transfer functions characterized by root length density. The formulation avoids complexities arising from switching variables when going from very dry to saturated conditions by using variables that are continuous throughout the domain: liquid pressure and N-1 mass fraction variables, expressed as partial capillary pressure. The mass fractions of all species in both phases are recovered from the standard equilibrium conditions used to define the partial capillary pressures. The use of partial capillary pressure state variables is inspired by mass balance considerations near saturation (where capillary pressure is almost zero), because mass balance convergence rates are dominated by the phase

  11. Oil migration through unsaturated soils and its effect on the Vadose Zone Interactive Processes (VIP) model output

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The VIP model, which simulates the concentration profiles of the hazardous compounds in the soil, water, and the air phases, assumes a fixed oily phase. The purpose of this study was to measure oil migration in soil systems and to determine its effect on the VIP model output. Experiments were conducted to demonstrate the mobility of an oil through the unsaturated zone of the soil. The studies were conducted in laboratory scale glass columns. A light petroleum oil and two types of soil were used. The experiments demonstrated that oil migrates down significantly through the soil columns. The extent of migration depended on the volume of oil applied and the type of soil. However, the applied oil was completely immobilized in the columns. The model was modified to incorporate oil migration. The modified model can be expected to produce more realistic contaminant concentration profiles during land treatment of oily wastes when compared to that produced by the present version of the VIP model. (Author)

  12. Carbon isotopic evidence for biodegradation of organic contaminants in the shallow vadose zone of the radioactive waste management complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waste material buried in drums in the shallow subsurface at the Radioactive Waste Management Facility (RWMC) of the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) contained significant amounts of organic compounds including lubricating oils and chlorinated solvents. CO2 concentrations in pore gas samples from monitoring wells in the vicinity of the disposal pits are 3 to 5 times higher than the concentrations in nearby background wells. The stable carbon isotope ratios ((delta)13C values) of CO2 from the disposal pits averaged 2.4. less than CO2 from the background wells, indicating that the elevated CO2 concentrations around the pits were derived from source materials with (delta)13C values in the range of -24(perthousand) to -29(perthousand). These (delta)13C values are typical of lubricating oils, but higher than most solvents. The radiocarbon (14C) contents of CO2 across most of the site were significantly elevated above modern concentrations due to reactor blocks buried in a subsurface vault at the site. However, several samples collected from the high-CO2 zone on the far side of the RWMC from the reactor blocks had very low 14C contents (less than 0.13 times modern), confirming production from lubricating oils manufactured from fossil hydrocarbons. The magnitude of the CO2 anomaly observed at the site is consistent with intrinsic biodegradation rates on the order of 0.5 to 3.0 metric tons of carbon per year

  13. RichardsFoam2: A new version of RichardsFoam devoted to the modelling of the vadose zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orgogozo, Laurent

    2015-11-01

    RichardsFoam2 is an updated version of the OpenFOAM® solver RichardsFoam, presented in Orgogozo et al., Comput. Phys. Commun. 2014. The new features are the following: (i) The direct handling of fully heterogeneous porous media, with all the van Genuchten parameters defined as spatially varying scalar fields. (ii) The computation of the density of water flux at each face of the mesh cells, which allows the implementation of fixed water flux (e.g.: rain flux) boundary conditions. (iii) The integration in the water flow resolution of the actual evapotranspiration within the root zone, computed on the basis of the potential evapotranspiration. These new features allow to deal with the hydrology of real (i.e.: heterogeneous) soils in natural conditions, submitted to rain and evapotranspiration. Thus it considerably broadens the field of applicability of the OpenFOAM® solver for Richards equation. The description of the elements contained in this release may be found in the readMe file. In RichardsFoam2_presentation.pdf, one will find a more detailed description of the new features offered by RichardsFoam2 (equations, descriptions of the proposed test cases , …).

  14. Transport of elemental mercury in the unsaturated zone from a waste disposal site in an arid region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mercury contained in buried landfill waste may be released via upward emission to the atmosphere or downward leaching to groundwater. Data from the US Geological Survey's Amargosa Desert Research Site (ADRS) in arid southwestern Nevada reveal another potential pathway of Hg release: long-distance (102 m) lateral migration of elemental Hg (Hg0) through the unsaturated zone. Gas collected from multiple depths from two instrumented boreholes that sample the entire 110-m unsaturated zone thickness and are located 100 and 160 m away from the closest waste burial trench exhibit gaseous Hg concentrations of up to 33 and 11 ng m-3, respectively. The vertical distribution of gaseous Hg in the borehole closest to the disposal site shows distinct subsurface peaks in concentration at depths of 1.5 and 24 m that cannot be explained by radial diffusive transport through a heterogeneous layered unsaturated zone. The inability of current models to explain gaseous Hg distribution at the ADRS highlights the need to advance the understanding of gas-phase contaminant transport in unsaturated zones to attain a comprehensive model of landfill Hg release

  15. Carbon isotopic evidence for biodegradation of organic contaminants in the shallow vadose zone of the radioactive waste management complex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Conrad, Mark E.; DePaolo, Donald J.

    2003-09-04

    Waste material buried in drums in the shallow subsurface at the Radioactive Waste Management Facility (RWMC) of the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) contained significant amounts of organic compounds including lubricating oils and chlorinated solvents. CO{sub 2} concentrations in pore gas samples from monitoring wells in the vicinity of the disposal pits are 3 to 5 times higher than the concentrations in nearby background wells. The stable carbon isotope ratios ({delta}{sup 13}C values) of CO{sub 2} from the disposal pits averaged 2.4. less than CO{sub 2} from the background wells, indicating that the elevated CO{sub 2} concentrations around the pits were derived from source materials with {delta}{sup 13}C values in the range of -24{per_thousand} to -29{per_thousand}. These {delta}{sup 13}C values are typical of lubricating oils, but higher than most solvents. The radiocarbon ({sup 14}C) contents of CO{sub 2} across most of the site were significantly elevated above modern concentrations due to reactor blocks buried in a subsurface vault at the site. However, several samples collected from the high-CO{sub 2} zone on the far side of the RWMC from the reactor blocks had very low {sup 14}C contents (less than 0.13 times modern), confirming production from lubricating oils manufactured from fossil hydrocarbons. The magnitude of the CO{sub 2} anomaly observed at the site is consistent with intrinsic biodegradation rates on the order of 0.5 to 3.0 metric tons of carbon per year.

  16. 农田包气带土层的脱氮防护探讨%Study on denitrification protection of farmland vadose zone soil

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张云; 刘长礼; 王秀艳; 宋博; 宋超; 彭玉荣

    2011-01-01

    N fertilization is a major way to increase agricultural output, but it could also bring the nitrate pollution to unsaturated zone soil and groundwater. So, explorating the nitrogen transformation, dissipation and denitrification protection in vadose zone of soil has important and practical significance. The typical vadose zone soil in the mountain-foot plain of Hebei was collected to construct field soil infiltration layer and other soil systems in situ.NO3--N liquid fertilizer was applied into these soil systems, the soil ammonia volatilization, nitrogen uptake by crop,inorganic nitrogen uptake by microbial, organic nitrogen mineralization, ete, were tested simultaneously. These data combined with the net nitrate input quantity, soil background value, final value of nitrate nitrogen and ammonium nitrogen were applied in equilibrium calculation so as to calculate the denitrification capacity of soil under different conditions. The results showed that denitrification capacity of test soil layer ranged 5.35-26.40 mg/kg, which revealed that the unsaturated zone soil had a significant nitrogen removal capacity, and could be used as an important protective barrier of nitrogen pollution of groundwater. The nitrogen removal capacity was enhanced with the increase of soil thickness and clay content in soil, and it was frustrated with seasons. In particular, soil water potential strongly controlled performance of soil denitrification capacity, and organic carbon was the factor of driving source of controlling huge change of soil denitrification capacity.%施用氮肥是农业增产的重要手段,广施氮肥易引起包气带土层和地下水中的氮素污染,开展有关包气带土层中的氮素转化、消散以及脱氮防护的相关工作具有重要意义.选择河北山前平原较典型的包气带土层,依托野外试验田区构建的原状渗透土层系统和室内构建的一系列移位原状土柱系统,探索采用向这些土层中施入一定的硝

  17. Unveiling the status of alien animals in the arid zone of Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Lyubing

    2016-01-01

    Biological invasion is one of the most threatening factors for biodiversity conservation. Lacking information on alien species in certain regions of the world hampers a balanced understanding of invasion processes and efficient data exchange among stakeholders. Current knowledge gaps are in need of urgent concern. We therefore conducted a review on alien animals in Xinjiang, an unknown region of invasion ecology. Xinjiang lies in the heartland of the Asian continent, covering an area of 1,664,900 km2. In the past 64 years, 128 alien animal species were recorded in this region, 39% of which became invasive and led to loss of native biodiversity. Most of these species were introduced through diversification of local agriculture and aquaculture. This process was aggravated by improving transportation and flourishing trade. Multiple linear regression models and correlation analysis were run for explaining influence of environmental and anthropogenic factors on status of alien animals: economically developed areas with abundant water resource, oases in particular, were prone to be hotspots of alien animal species in this arid and semi-arid region. This study also revealed that taxonomically biased and lagged research were critical problems that impeded studies on biological invasions in Xinjiang, and proposed feasible solutions. PMID:26793423

  18. Isotopic evidence for ground water contributions to rare floods in arid zone Ephemeral Rivers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: Isotope data has shown that the ground water component ('old' water) feeding rivers during rainfall events can be more important than surface runoff. This has been established for rivers in temperate climates with perennial base flow. We report here on possibly unique isotopic and chemical evidence of ground water contributions to flood periods in major ephemeral water courses in the arid/semi-arid western Kalahari of Namibia. In the framework of a major ground water resource investigation in the area numerous samples were analysed for their isotope and chemical content. It was established that especially the shallow aquifer in the largely unconsolidated Kalahari formation which blankets the area shows clear evidence of kinetic evaporation. This evaporation signal is observed also in parts of the deeper sedimentary aquifers. During the period of this project the exceptional rainfall of the 1999-2000 season, experienced by many southern African countries, produced rare flood events in the ephemeral river system of the area of study. Flow rates in the rivers could only be estimated from water depth measurements. However, in some cases daily river water samples were collected for isotope analysis. Stable isotope, tritium and certain chemical parameters measured on these samples are presented and placed in context of available ground water data. The results suggest that a substantial proportion of the flow in the river was derived from perched ground water. This conclusion is strengthened by the fact that the river again flooded during the more normal 2000-2001 rainy period. (author)

  19. Pharmacognostical studies of important arid zone plants Estudos farmacognósticos de plantas importantes de zonas áridas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satish C. Jain

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Arid zone of Rajasthan, India, has its own importance, great diversity and specific characteristic with respect to endemic and large number of plants of economic importance and medicinal use. Out of these, three arid zone plants Gisekia pharnaceoides L., Gisekiaceae, Sericostoma pauciflorum Stocks ex Wight, Boraginaceae, and Trianthema decandra L., Aizoaceae, which are traditionally used for different ailments (hepatitis, asthma, jaundice, skin-infections etc. have been selected for the study. In the present paper, detailed pharmacognostical evaluation of these plant species using microscopy, standard physicochemical determinations and authentic phytochemical parameters has been carried out. Later, these morphological characteristics could be used for rapid identification of the drugs, particularly in case of powdered materials, and may possibly help to differentiate the drug from its other species.A zona árida de Rajasthan, Índia, é importante pela grande diversidade e especificidade de plantas endêmicas de importância econômica e medicinal. Destas, três plantas de zonas áridas, Gisekia pharnaceoides L., Gisekiaceae, Sericostoma pauciflorum Stocks ex Wight, Boraginaceae, e Trianthema decandra L., Aizoaceae, que são tradicionalmente utilizados para diversas doenças (hepatite, asma, icterícia, infecções da pele etc., foram selecionados para o estudo. Neste trabalho trabalho, a avaliação farmacognóstica detalhada destas espécies, através de estudo morfoanatômico, determinações físico-químicas e parâmetros fitoquímicos, foram realizados. As características morfológicas podem ser utilizados para rápida identificação das drogas, particularmente no caso de materiais em pó, e possivelmente ajudar a diferenciar a droga de outras espécies.

  20. Simulation of Flow and Long-Term Plutonium (Pu) Transport in the Vadose Zone at the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demirkanli, I.; Molz, F. J.; Kaplan, D. I.; Fjeld, R. A.; Serkiz, S. M.

    2006-05-01

    An improved understanding of flow and radionuclide transport in vadose zone sediments is fundamental to all types of future planning involving radioactive materials. One way to obtain such understanding is to perform long-term experimental studies of Pu transport in complex natural systems. With this in mind, a series of field experiments were initiated at the SRNL in the early 1980s. Lysimeters containing sources of different Pu oxidation states were placed in the shallow subsurface and left open to the natural environment for 2 to 11 years. At the end of the experiments, Pu activities were measured along vertical cores obtained from the lysimeters. Pu distributions were anomalous in nature, with transport from oxidized Pu sources being less than expected, and a small fraction of Pu from reduced sources moving more. Laboratory studies with lysimeter sediments suggested that surface-mediated, oxidation/reduction (redox) reactions could be responsible for the anomalous behavior, and this hypothesis is tested by performing both steady-state and transient Pu transport simulations that include retardation along with first-order redox reactions on mineral surfaces. Based on the simulations, we conclude that the surface-mediated, redox hypothesis is consistent with the observed downward Pu activity profiles in the experiments, and such profiles are captured well by a steady-state, net downward, flow model. (Discussion is presented as to why a steady model appears to work in a highly transient flow environment.) The redox model explains how Pu(V/VI) sources release activity that moves downward more slowly than expected based on adsorptive retardation alone, and how Pu(III/IV) sources result in a small fraction of activity that moves downward more rapidly than expected. The calibrated parameter values were robust and relatively well-defined throughout all four sets of simulations. Pu(V/VI) (i.e., oxidized Pu)retardation factors were about 15, and reduced Pu

  1. Research-Based Learning for Undergraduate Students in Soil and Water Sciences: A Case Study of Hydropedology in an Arid-Zone Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Maktoumi, Ali; Al-Ismaily, Said; Kacimov, Anvar

    2016-01-01

    This article reports the efficacy of a research-based learning (RBL) exercise on hydropedology of arid zones, with guided and open research projects (OPR) carried out by teams of undergraduate students in Oman. A range of activities and assessments was used to support student learning during the three-month course. Assessment included monitoring…

  2. Individual based, long term monitoring of acacia trees in hyper arid zone: Integration of a field survey and a remote sensing approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaacson, Sivan; Blumberg, Dan G.; Ginat, Hanan; Shalmon, Benny

    2013-04-01

    Vegetation in hyper arid zones is very sparse as is. Monitoring vegetation changes in hyper arid zones is important because any reduction in the vegetation cover in these areas can lead to a considerable reduction in the carrying capacity of the ecological system. This study focuses on the impact of climate fluctuations on the acacia population in the southern Arava valley, Israel. The period of this survey includes a sequence of dry years with no flashfloods in most of the plots that ended in two years with vast floods. Arid zone acacia trees play a significant role in the desert ecosystem by moderating the extreme environmental conditions including radiation, temperature, humidity and precipitation. The trees also provide nutrients for the desert dwellers. Therefore, acacia trees in arid zones are considered to be `keystone species', because they have major influence over both plants and animal species, i.e., biodiversity. Long term monitoring of the acacia tree population in this area can provide insights into long term impacts of climate fluctuations on ecosystems in arid zones. Since 2000, a continuous yearly based survey on the three species of acacia population in seven different plots is conducted in the southern Arava (established by Shalmon, ecologist of the Israel nature and parks authority). The seven plots representing different ecosystems and hydrological regimes. A yearly based population monitoring enabled us to determine the mortality and recruitment rate of the acacia populations as well as growing rates of individual trees. This survey provides a unique database of the acacia population dynamics during a sequence of dry years that ended in a vast flood event during the winter of 2010. A lack of quantitative, nondestructive methods to estimate and monitor stress status of the acacia trees, led us to integrate remote sensing tools (ground and air-based) along with conventional field measurements in order to develop a long term monitoring of acacia

  3. Performance of different vegetation indices in assessing degradation of community grazing lands in Indian arid zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Suresh; Bastin, Gary; Friedel, Margaret; Narain, Pratap; Saha, D. K.; Ahuja, U. R.; Mathur, B. K.

    2006-12-01

    Vegetation in arid community grazinglands shows monsoonal growth. Its matching phenology with crops makes its detection difficult during July to September. While crops are harvested during September-October, using satellite data thereafter for the natural vegetation seems most appropriate but by then it turns dry. An index capable of sensing dry vegetation was needed since conventional NDVI is sensitive to greenness of vegetation. Performance of NDVI vis-à-vis another index, PD54, based on cover was therefore compared in assessing degradation of grazinglands. The PD54 was used to isolate anthropogenic impacts from environmental induced degradation by analyzing satellite images from dry and wet seasons. Substantial absence of appreciable vegetation response indicated poor resilience and severe degradation. Five grazinglands in Shergarh tehsil of Jodhpur district in Rajasthan were studied following above approach. Ground radiometric observations were recorded. Satellite data of IRS 1C/1D/P6 with LISS 3 sensor for both pre and post monsoon season were acquired for three contrasting wet-dry season events. These were geometrically registered and radiometrically calibrated to calculate an index of vegetation cover PD54 as well as NDVI. PD54 is a perpendicular vegetation index based on the green and red spectral band width. The PD54 and NDVI calculated from spectro-radiometer were related to vegetation cover measured on ground in permanent plots. This confirmed that PD54 was superior index for estimating cover in arid dry grasslands. These ground vegetation trends in a good rainfall year (2001) with drought year (2002) were related with satellite data for a protected and four unprotected grazinglands. NDVI failed to detect any vegetation in protected areas supporting excellent grass cover which was succinctly brought out by PD54. Successful validation of PD54 in detecting degradation of 13 additional sites confirmed its efficacy. These findings have implication in forage

  4. Isotopic evidence for ground water contributions to rare floods in arid zone ephemeral rivers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: Isotope data has shown that the ground water component ('old' water) feeding rivers during rainfall events can be more important than surface runoff (Sklash et al. 1976). This has been established for rivers in temperate climates with perennial base flow. We report here on possibly unique isotopic and chemical evidence of ground water contributions to flood periods in major ephemeral water courses in the arid/semi-arid western Kalahari of Namibia. In the framework of a major ground water resource investigation in the area numerous samples were analysed for their isotope and chemical content. It was established that especially the shallow aquifer in the largely unconsolidated Kalahari formation which blankets the area shows clear evidence of kinetic evaporation. This evaporation signal is observed also in parts of the deeper sedimentary aquifers. During the period of this project the exceptional rainfall of the 1999-2000 season, experienced by many southern African countries, produced rare flood events in the ephemeral river system of the area of study. Flow rates in the rivers could only be estimated from water depth measurements. However, in some cases daily river water samples were collected for isotope analysis. Stable isotope, tritium and certain chemical parameters measured on these samples are presented and placed in context of available ground water data. The results suggest that a substantial proportion of the flow in the river was derived from perched ground water. This conclusion is strengthened by the fact that the river again flooded during the more normal 2000-2001 rainy period. (author)

  5. Performance of Jatropha curcas L. in Semi-arid Zone: Seed Germination, Seedling Growth and Early Field Growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharif AHAMAD

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available There is a lack of information on basic agronomic properties of Jatropha curcas L. (jatropha cultivation on the marginal lands in the semi-arids. Evaluation of agronomic performance of identified elite strains of J. curcas in marginal lands would be of paramount importance for addressing gap areas in their agronomic properties and subsequently for harnessing their optimum economic potentials. The present study undertook the task of analysing the growth performance of a high oil bearing elite strain of J. curcas–DARL-2 in degraded land in semi-arid zone of Deccan Plateau, India. While undertaking the assessment of growth performance of elite strain DARL-2, two other native (wild strains (namely AHN-1 and AHN-2 of J. curcas were also considered so that a comparative evaluation could be carried out. The role of gypsum was also investigated on J. curcas in the nursery stage as well its carry over effects on growth performance of transplanted trees in the field. Two types of substrates, gypsum-treated soil (GS and untreated soil (SL were used for growing seedlings of all the three jatropha strains. Seedlings (120-days-old of DARL-2 exhibited greater plant height, collar diameter and number of branches but root length was greater in the local strains. In the second year of field transplantation, DARL-2 strain exhibited significantly (p<0.05 greater plant height and number of branches/plant. No carry over effects of gypsum treatment were observed in field transplanted plants as none of the growth parameters significantly varied among the substrate types.

  6. Urban Market Gardening and Rodent-Borne Pathogenic Leptospira in Arid Zones: A Case Study in Niamey, Niger.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gauthier Dobigny

    Full Text Available Leptospirosis essentially affects human following contact with rodent urine-contaminated water. As such, it was mainly found associated with rice culture, recreational activities and flooding. This is also the reason why it has mainly been investigated in temperate as well as warm and humid regions, while arid zones have been only very occasionally monitored for this disease. In particular, data for West African countries are extremely scarce. Here, we took advantage of an extensive survey of urban rodents in Niamey, Niger, in order to look for rodent-borne pathogenic Leptospira species presence and distribution across the city. To do so, we used high throughput bacterial 16S-based metabarcoding, lipL32 gene-targeting RT-PCR, rrs gene sequencing and VNTR typing as well as GIS-based multivariate spatial analysis. Our results show that leptospires seem absent from the core city where usual Leptospira reservoir rodent species (namely R. rattus and M. natalensis are yet abundant. On the contrary, L. kirschneri was detected in Arvicanthis niloticus and Cricetomys gambianus, two rodent species that are restricted to irrigated cultures within the city. Moreover, the VNTR profiles showed that rodent-borne leptospires in Niamey belong to previously undescribed serovars. Altogether, our study points towards the importance of market gardening in maintain and circulation of leptospirosis within Sahelian cities. In Africa, irrigated urban agriculture constitutes a pivotal source of food supply, especially in the context of the ongoing extensive urbanization of the continent. With this in mind, we speculate that leptospirosis may represent a zoonotic disease of concern also in arid regions that would deserve to be more rigorously surveyed, especially in urban agricultural settings.

  7. Urban Market Gardening and Rodent-Borne Pathogenic Leptospira in Arid Zones: A Case Study in Niamey, Niger.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobigny, Gauthier; Garba, Madougou; Tatard, Caroline; Loiseau, Anne; Galan, Max; Kadaouré, Ibrahima; Rossi, Jean-Pierre; Picardeau, Mathieu; Bertherat, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Leptospirosis essentially affects human following contact with rodent urine-contaminated water. As such, it was mainly found associated with rice culture, recreational activities and flooding. This is also the reason why it has mainly been investigated in temperate as well as warm and humid regions, while arid zones have been only very occasionally monitored for this disease. In particular, data for West African countries are extremely scarce. Here, we took advantage of an extensive survey of urban rodents in Niamey, Niger, in order to look for rodent-borne pathogenic Leptospira species presence and distribution across the city. To do so, we used high throughput bacterial 16S-based metabarcoding, lipL32 gene-targeting RT-PCR, rrs gene sequencing and VNTR typing as well as GIS-based multivariate spatial analysis. Our results show that leptospires seem absent from the core city where usual Leptospira reservoir rodent species (namely R. rattus and M. natalensis) are yet abundant. On the contrary, L. kirschneri was detected in Arvicanthis niloticus and Cricetomys gambianus, two rodent species that are restricted to irrigated cultures within the city. Moreover, the VNTR profiles showed that rodent-borne leptospires in Niamey belong to previously undescribed serovars. Altogether, our study points towards the importance of market gardening in maintain and circulation of leptospirosis within Sahelian cities. In Africa, irrigated urban agriculture constitutes a pivotal source of food supply, especially in the context of the ongoing extensive urbanization of the continent. With this in mind, we speculate that leptospirosis may represent a zoonotic disease of concern also in arid regions that would deserve to be more rigorously surveyed, especially in urban agricultural settings. PMID:26437456

  8. Fishery Resources in Arid Zone Mangroves in Gulf of Kachchh, Gujarat, Northwest Coast of India

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    A. Saravanakumar; M. Rajkumar; J. Sesh Serebiah; G. A. Thivakaran

    2009-01-01

    The finfish and shellfish resources were assessed quantitatively and qualitatively in regard to their abundance in creek waters at three sites within a period of two years, from January 1999 to December 2000, in the western mangrove areas of Kachchh.The catch rate varied from 0.69 to 6.99 kg h-1. It was low during monsoon (July to October), which could be due to the freshwater-flow-induced salinity reduction in all the sites. Among 38 species recorded, 5 were shellfish and 33 were finfish. The spawning period of fishes was found to be during summer and early monsoon period (May to August). Surface water temperatures varied from 17 ℃ to 37 ℃. Salinity values varied from 34 to 44 and the pH ranged between 7 and 8.9. Variation in dissolved oxygen content was from 3.42 to 5.85 mLL-1. The high fishery densities in these semi arid mangrove creek areas were recorded during monsoon and early winter season.

  9. Human response and adaptation to drought in the arid zone: lessons from southern Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. R.J. Dean

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Human adaptation and response to drought is primarily through evasion or endurance. A review of historical agricultural practices in southern Africa demonstrates evidence of drought evasion response strategies in well-established transhumance routes, where herders move livestock on a seasonal basis in order to exploit resources subject to different climatic regimes. European settlers to the arid regions of South Africa quickly recognised the necessity of these evasion options to survive drought, and adopted the transhumance practices of indigenous farmers. Areas of geographically diverse resource bases became hotly contested by settlers and indigenous farmers. The success of evasion systems are shown to hinge on good social and institutional support structures. When movement is not an option, drought endurance is pursued by attempting to limit the damage to the natural resource base. This is through a number of means such as forage conservation, varying livestock types and numbers, water and soil conservation and taking up alternative livelihood options. State responses to drought over the last century reflect the general South African pattern of racially divided and unjust policies relating to resource access. Historically the state provided considerable support to white commercial farmers. This support was frequently contradictory in its aims and generally was inadequate to enable farmers to cope with drought. Since the advent of democracy in 1994, the state has intervened less, with some support extended to previously disadvantaged and poor communal farmers. Climate change predictions suggest an increase in drought, suggesting that the adoption of mitigating strategies should be a matter of urgency. To do this South Africa needs to build social and institutional capacity, strive for better economic and environmental sustainability, embed drought-coping mechanisms into land restitution policy to ensure the success of this programme, and

  10. Multimodel analysis of anisotropic diffusive tracer-gas transport in a deep arid unsaturated zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Christopher T.; Walvoord, Michelle Ann; Andraski, Brian J.; Striegl, Rob; Stonestrom, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Gas transport in the unsaturated zone affects contaminant flux and remediation, interpretation of groundwater travel times from atmospheric tracers, and mass budgets of environmentally important gases. Although unsaturated zone transport of gases is commonly treated as dominated by diffusion, the characteristics of transport in deep layered sediments remain uncertain. In this study, we use a multimodel approach to analyze results of a gas-tracer (SF6) test to clarify characteristics of gas transport in deep unsaturated alluvium. Thirty-five separate models with distinct diffusivity structures were calibrated to the tracer-test data and were compared on the basis of Akaike Information Criteria estimates of posterior model probability. Models included analytical and numerical solutions. Analytical models provided estimates of bulk-scale apparent diffusivities at the scale of tens of meters. Numerical models provided information on local-scale diffusivities and feasible lithological features producing the observed tracer breakthrough curves. The combined approaches indicate significant anisotropy of bulk-scale diffusivity, likely associated with high-diffusivity layers. Both approaches indicated that diffusivities in some intervals were greater than expected from standard models relating porosity to diffusivity. High apparent diffusivities and anisotropic diffusivity structures were consistent with previous observations at the study site of rapid lateral transport and limited vertical spreading of gas-phase contaminants. Additional processes such as advective oscillations may be involved. These results indicate that gases in deep, layered unsaturated zone sediments can spread laterally more quickly, and produce higher peak concentrations, than predicted by homogeneous, isotropic diffusion models.

  11. 基于DRASTIC的包气带阻滞污染物能力研究%Study on the ability of blocking pollutants in the vadose zone based on DRASTIC

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郭静; 赵林; 刘年磊

    2011-01-01

    对包气带阻滞污染物能力的研究,对保护地下水脆弱性具有重要意义.将传统DRASTIC方法结合层次分析法,对各评价指标赋以新的权重,并依托地理信息系统(GIS)平台,对河南省土壤包气带阻滞污染物的能力进行评价,得到了河南省包气带阻滞能力分区图.结果表明,针对现状所进行的包气带阻滞污染物能力的评价对实际情况具有一定的代表性,可以为该地区的地下水资源保护提供科学依据.此外,基于GIS平台,对河南全省范围内做DRASTIC中7个评价指标的空间叠加分析,实现DRASTIC方法在大空间尺度上的应用,为今后大空间范围内的地下水脆弱性评价提供借鉴意义.%The capacity of vadose zone for blocking pollutants was one of the key factors should be considered in protection of groundwater vulnerability. The traditional DRASTIC model combined with analytic hierarchy process (AHP) method was applied to assessment the capacity of vadose zone for blocking pollutants, the weight and quantifying value of each index was determined in this method. In the case study of Henan Province, the soil vadose zone blocking ability map was developed base on the GIS platform. Results showed that the assessment result was identical with the fact.it could provide scientific basis for protection of groundwater resource. In addition,dimensional overlaying analysis of 7 evaluation index of DRASTIC was made in GIS circumstance,achieved the application of DRASTIC in the large-scale space, which provide reference for large-scale groundwater vulnerability assessment in future.

  12. Use of isotopes for the study of pollutant behaviour in the unsaturated zone at three semi-arid sites in the USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    As part of the International Atomic Energy Agency CRP on movement of pollutants through the unsaturated zone, three areas were examined in the United States. The three areas were: 1. A radioactive waste disposal site near Beatty Nevada. 2. The Upper Mojave Desert in Southern California. 3. The High Plains Aquifer (HPA) in the mid-continental area of the country. All sites were in arid to semi-arid locations with deep (>30 meters) unsaturated zones. Tritium results from all three sites indicate that recharge is focused and not an areal phenomena. Typically, in arid sites, ephemeral streams seem to be locations of focused recharge. It is also evident that lateral movement is an important part of movement of liquid, solutes, and gasses through the unsaturated zone. Models should be at least two dimensional to correctly represent this movement. The use of CFCs in the unsaturated zone can help in constructing these models. The studies in the HPA have shown that the onset of irrigation has mobilized naturally-occurring salts and moved them toward the water table. Due to the depth to the water table in the HPA, these salts have not yet entered the groundwater in most locations. At present, large quantities of both natural and agricultural chemicals are stored in the unsaturated zone and the potential exists for increased contamination from these chemicals in future years if this movement continues. In the case of the HPA, the switch from flood to sprinkler irrigation has slowed the movement of these contaminants. There is very little evidence of mitigation of agricultural contaminants below the root zone. Some reactions may occur at the saturated/unsaturated zone interface but it does not seem to have a major impact on chemical concentrations. (author)

  13. Long-term spatio-temporal precipitation variability in arid-zone Australia and implications for groundwater recharge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acworth, R. Ian; Rau, Gabriel C.; Cuthbert, Mark O.; Jensen, Evan; Leggett, Keith

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying dryland groundwater recharge as a function of climate variability is becoming increasingly important in the face of a globally depleted resource, yet this remains a major challenge due to lack of adequate monitoring and the complexity of processes involved. A previously unpublished and unique dataset of high density and frequency rainfall measurements is presented, from the Fowlers Gap Arid Zone Research Station in western New South Wales (Australia). The dataset confirms extreme spatial and temporal variability in rainfall distribution which has been observed in other dryland areas and is generally explained by the dominance of individual storm cells. Contrary to previous observations, however, this dataset contains only a few localised storm cells despite the variability. The implications of spatiotemporal rainfall variability on the estimation of groundwater recharge is assessed and show that the most likely recharge mechanism is through indirect and localised, rather than direct, recharge. Examples of rainfall and stream gauge height illustrate runoff generation when a spatially averaged threshold of 15-25 mm (depending on the antecedent moisture conditions) is exceeded. Preliminary assessment of groundwater levels illustrates that the regional water table is much deeper than anticipated, especially considering the expected magnitude of indirect and localised recharge. A possible explanation is that pathways for indirect and localised recharge are inhibited by the large quantities of Aeolian dust observed at the site. Runoff readily occurs with water collecting in surface lakes which slowly dry and disappear. Assuming direct groundwater recharge under these conditions will significantly overestimate actual recharge.

  14. Tritium plume dynamics in the shallow unsaturated zone in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maples, S.R.; Andraski, B.J.; Stonestrom, D.A.; Cooper, C.A.; Pohll, G.; Michel, R.L.

    2014-01-01

    The spatiotemporal variability of a tritium plume in the shallow unsaturated zone and the mechanisms controlling its transport were evaluated during a 10-yr study. Plume movement was minimal and its mass declined by 68%. Upward-directed diffusive-vapor tritium fluxes and radioactive decay accounted for most of the observed plume-mass declines. Effective isolation of tritium (3H) and other contaminants at waste-burial facilities requires improved understanding of transport processes and pathways. Previous studies documented an anomalously widespread (i.e., theoretically unexpected) distribution of 3H (>400 m from burial trenches) in a dry, sub-root-zone gravelly layer (1–2-m depth) adjacent to a low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) burial facility in the Amargosa Desert, Nevada, that closed in 1992. The objectives of this study were to: (i) characterize long-term, spatiotemporal variability of 3H plumes; and (ii) quantify the processes controlling 3H behavior in the sub-root-zone gravelly layer beneath native vegetation adjacent to the facility. Geostatistical methods, spatial moment analyses, and mass flux calculations were applied to a spatiotemporally comprehensive, 10-yr data set (2001–2011). Results showed minimal bulk-plume advancement during the study period and limited Fickian spreading of mass. Observed spreading rates were generally consistent with theoretical vapor-phase dispersion. The plume mass diminished more rapidly than would be expected from radioactive decay alone, indicating net efflux from the plume. Estimates of upward 3H efflux via diffusive-vapor movement were >10× greater than by dispersive-vapor or total-liquid movement. Total vertical fluxes were >20× greater than lateral diffusive-vapor fluxes, highlighting the importance of upward migration toward the land surface. Mass-balance calculations showed that radioactive decay and upward diffusive-vapor fluxes contributed the majority of plume loss. Results indicate that plume losses

  15. Absent otoacoustic emissions predict otitis media in young Aboriginal children: A birth cohort study in Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children in an arid zone of Western Australia

    OpenAIRE

    Stokes Annette; Finucane Janine; Elsbury Dimity; Jacoby Peter; Weeks Sharon; Lehmann Deborah; Monck Ruth; Coates Harvey

    2008-01-01

    Abstract Background Otitis media (OM) is the most common paediatric illness for which antibiotics are prescribed. In Australian Aboriginal children OM is frequently asymptomatic and starts at a younger age, is more common and more likely to result in hearing loss than in non-Aboriginal children. Absent transient evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAEs) may predict subsequent risk of OM. Methods 100 Aboriginal and 180 non-Aboriginal children in a semi-arid zone of Western Australia were followed ...

  16. Effects of temperature on embryonic and larval development and growth in the natterjack toad (Bufo calamita in a semi-arid zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanuy, D.

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Temperature affects the duration of embryonic and larval periods in amphibians. Plasticity in time to metamorphosis is especially important in amphibian populations of Mediterranean semi-arid zones where temperatures are high and precipitation is low, increasing the rate of pond desiccation. In order to test the influence of water temperature on the larval development and growth of the natterjack toad (Bufo calamita, we collected two spawns in a semi¿arid zone at Balaguer (Lleida, NE Iberian peninsula. Approximately 50 (+/-10 eggs (stage 14-16 were raised in the lab at different temperature conditions: 10, 15, 20, 22.5 and 25ºC with 12:12 photoperiod. The results show a lengthening of development time with decreasing temperatures and a better survival performance of B. calamita to high temperatures. However, mean size at metamorphosis was not different across treatments, thus, suggesting that this population of B. calamita requires a minimum size to complete the metamorphosis. This study is the first approach to examine the effects that climatic factors have on the growth and development of B. calamita in semi-arid zones.

  17. Application of isotopes and chemistry in unsaturated zone in arid areas of Rajasthan, India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Isotopes and chemistry of unsaturated zone soil profiles in Saraf ki Dani, Sihania and Lakrasar site in Barmer district of western Rajasthan, and precipitation samples collected at Chohtan, the nearest meteorological station, have been used to study groundwater recharge and to characterise the behaviour of contaminants in the subsurface. Soil water was extracted by vacuum distillation and analysed for 2H and 18O, whereas elutriation methods were used for chemistry. Based on the observed chloride profiles, groundwater recharge rates are estimated to be ∼10 to 18 mm per annum for the above sites. δ18O profiles at Sihania and Lakrasar (1999), reveal depleted δ18O values observed at a depth of ∼2 m, possibly due to an episode of heavy rains during 1998. Depthwise distribution of of F- , SO4-2 and NO3- at Sihania site II (1999) and δ18O signatures confirm that evaporative concentration occurs during dry periods. Enrichment of NO3- in the profiles may be related to fixation of nitrogen by leguminous plants. (author)

  18. Energy use pattern in production agriculture of a typical village in arid zone. Pt. 3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, H.; Mishra, D.; Nahar, N.M. [Central Arid Zone Research Institute, Rajasthan (India). Div. of Agricultural Engineering and Energy

    2004-09-01

    India has 31.71 Mha of hot and areas, of which 61.8% is in Western Rajasthan, commonly known as the ''Thar Desert''. A detailed study of the energy use pattern in production agriculture for a representative village, Pemasar, district Bikaner of zone II (200 mm/yr {<=} annual rainfall < 300 mm/yr) has been conducted. Out of the total geographical area (945.7 ha) of the village, 693.6 ha is cultivable land. The main crops grown in the village are cluster bean, moth bean, groundnut, green gram (Kharif), wheat, mustard, gram, barley and rocket salad (Rabi). In general, Kharif crops are grown as rain fed crops, but due to low rainfall in the zone and the presence of the Indira Gandhi Canal, even Kharif crops are raised under irrigated conditions. However, the area covered under irrigation is meagre as the availability of canal water is very much limited and uncertain. Operation wise, the total energy consumed for rain fed Kharif crops is minimum (1187.6 MJ/ha) for moth bean and maximum (1261.9 MJ/ha) for cluster bean, while for irrigated crops, it is minimum (2847.3 MJ/ha) for moth bean, and maximum (12,809.6 MJ/ha) for groundnut. The average specific energy for cultivation of cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 11.7, 7.5, 7.7, 7.4 and 11.2 MJ/ha, respectively. Operation wise, the energy consumed for Rabi crops is minimum (3855.6 MJ/ha) for rocket salad followed by 4779.4 MJ/ha for mustard, 4845.2 MJ/ha for gram and maximum (7953.2 MJ/ha) for wheat. The average specific energy for cultivation of wheat, gram, mustard and rocket salad were 11.4, 16.5, 13.2 and 13.7 MJ/ha, respectively. The average values of estimated energy ratio for cluster bean (rain fed), cluster bean (irrigated), moth bean (rain fed), moth bean (irrigated) and groundnut were 2.1, 0.5, 3.4, 3.5 and 3.0, respectively. This suggests that the moth bean crop is more remunerating to the farmers in Kharif as

  19. Breeding habitat selection of an endangered species in an arid zone: the case of Alytes dickhilleni Arntzen & García-París, 1995

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Egea-Serrano

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available The influence of environmental variables on the selection of a particular water body as breeding habitat by Alytes dickhilleni was studied in the southeastern and most arid zone of its distribution range. From November 2002 to October 2003, 50 water bodies were monitored in the south east of the Iberian Peninsula. Environmental data were submitted to a stepwise logistic regression analysis at macrohabitat, water body typology and microhabitat scales in order to establish the main factors influencing the use of a given water body as breeding habitat by this species. Statistical analysis showed that the reproduction of Alytes dickhilleni is associated with the macrohabitat variable topography, and the water body typology. This species breeds mainly in permanent water bodies located in mountainous topography in the study area. These results should be taken into account when populations of this species are subjected to management and/or recovery programmes in arid areas.

  20. Evaporation and concentration gradients created by episodic river recharge in a semi-arid zone aquifer: Insights from Cl-, δ18O, δ2H, and 3H

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meredith, K. T.; Hollins, S. E.; Hughes, C. E.; Cendón, D. I.; Chisari, R.; Griffiths, A.; Crawford, J.

    2015-10-01

    This study has significantly advanced our understanding of the origin of groundwater recharge in a semi-arid zone region of the Darling River catchment, Australia. The generally accepted hypothesis in arid zone environments in Australia that river water forms the primary groundwater recharge source has proven difficult to monitor. This is due to the time lags between large floods, the remoteness and expense of studying these hydrologically complex systems in detail. In addition, the highly episodic nature of dryland rivers complicates the interpretation of the groundwater signal. A range of hydrochemical tracers (chloride, oxygen-18, deuterium and tritium) measured in rain, river water, soil water and groundwater were used in this multi-year study to trace the pathways of groundwater recharge under wet and dry climatic conditions. The evaporation and Cl concentrations observed in the unsaturated zone confirmed that small volumetric inputs from periodic rainfall were not the major recharge mechanism. Sampling which included an overbank flooding event in March 2012 provided firm evidence for groundwater originating from high flow episodic river recharge. The use of long-term environmental data to understand how economically important water resources respond to climate change with increasing temperatures is considered essential for future sustainability.

  1. Ground water input to a rare flood event in an arid zone ephemeral river identified with isotopes and chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Various isotope studies in temperate climates have shown that the shallow groundwater component feeding perennial rivers during rainfall events can be more important than surface runoff. We report, here on possibly unique isotopic and chemical evidence of groundwater contributions to a rare Hood event of the ephemeral Auob River during the exceptional rains of 1999/2000 in the arid/semi-arid Kalahari of southeastern Namibia. The recognition of this process was enabled by a detailed knowledge of the isotope hydrology of groundwater in the area and provided insights into aspects of the palaeo-hydrology of the Auob River catchment. (author)

  2. Extracting wetlands information of arid zone based on index method%干旱区湿地信息的指数提取方法

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张芳; 塔西甫拉提·特依拜; 熊黑钢; 丁建丽; 田源

    2011-01-01

    以和田绿洲湿地为研究靶区,针对干旱区特有的地貌、气候特点,利用热红外波段在解译水体、湿地信息方面具有独特的优势,提出了基于热红外特征的干旱区湿地指数AZWI( Arid Zone Wetlands Index),详细叙述了AZWI的计算方法及过程,在总结传统主流方法的基础上,分别采用非监督分类、监督分类、决策树法和AZWI方法对研究区的湿地信息进行提取,并对提取结果进行比较.试验表明:AZWI方法对水层较浅的河床和植被较密的沼泽提取精度较高,生产者精度可达88.5%,产生误差的原因主要有两个,一方面是水体与沼泽之间的阈值划分具有一定的主观性;另一方面沼泽边缘与草地的过渡带容易造成混分.若将坑、塘等水域部分和沼泽统一作为湿地资源考虑,则AZWI对于本研究区湿地资源提取精度可达96.5%.AZWI方法简便易于操作,可以作为干旱区湿地时空分布与动态变化监测的有效技术手段.%The arid zone wetlands are closely related to ecological processes of desert mechanism, but they have obvious environment vulnerability. The arid zone wetlands are an important index factor of environment changes in arid zones. The wandering, constringency and disappearing of arid zone wetlands produce a faithful representation of the quality and capability of oasis which is the only living space for people in arid zones. Taking advantage of remote sensing and spatial data and aiming at particular characteristics of landform and climate in Hotan oasis in Xinjiang, this paper presented an AZWI (Arid Zone Wetlands Index) based on thermal and infrared characteristics by using their powerful capability of identifying water and wetlands in arid areas. The idea and method of constructing AZWI are described in detail. Based on summarizing the traditional methodologies to remotely sense wetlands besides AZWI, several general methods were also applied, including: unsupervised

  3. Field test of moisture migration in vadose zone under heterogeneity%非均质条件下河流包气带水分运移的原位试验

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李永涛; 王文科; 肖建英; 杨晓婷

    2012-01-01

    围绕非均质条件下河流包气带水分运移,选择渭河河漫滩开展原位试验.在渭河原位试验点开挖7m×1 m×2.8m的探坑,以一侧剖面为研究面,刨光成垂直平面并对剖面做保护工作,方便观测.在不同层位按不同深度、在不同岩性的层位上打孔,分别安装MP-917时域反射仪与水银压力计,监测含水率及地下水压力势,并采用自制Bauwer渗水仪做持续5d的有压入渗试验,研究非均质条件下河流包气带水分运移规律及人渗速度与水头高度的关系.结果表明,包气带介质含水率分布与包气带结构有关,受岩性渗透系数制约,其中弱透水层的存在阻滞了水分的运移,包气带很难达到饱和,在弱透水层以上形成上层滞水并以非饱和流形式人渗.入渗速度随水层的厚度增大而增大,且入渗速度与水头高度呈对数关系.%The paper is engaged in a field test of moisture migration in vadose zone under the heterogeneous condition in the Weihe(Shaanx-i) flood-plain. The reason why we have chosen the topic is that the evolution of a river may exert serious consequential effects on the groundwater change, the water quality and even the ecological environment along the entire river reach. It is for such purposes, we have dug up some measuring pits as large as 7 m × 1 m×2.8m and taken them as our study profile. For the convenience of observation, we have installed a MP - 917 Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) and a mercury manometer to observe the potential pressure and the moisture content in correspondence with the different properties of lithology and depth respectively. And, then, we have done a five-day infiltration test by using our own-made Bauwer Ooze water meter. Though it is difficult to understand the infiltration mechanism for its complexity with the unsaturated zone being heterogeneous with compacted sandwich structure, the field test is comparatively simple about the moisture migration in vadose zone

  4. Tailoring conservation agriculture technologies to West Africa semi-arid zones: Building on traditional local practices for soil restoration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lahmar, R.; Bationo, B.A.; Lamso, N.D.; Guéro, Y.; Tittonell, P.A.

    2012-01-01

    Low inherent fertility of tropical soils and degradation, nutrient deficiency and water stress are the key factors that hamper rainfed agriculture in semi-arid West Africa. Conservation Agriculture (CA) is currently promoted in the region as a technology to reduce soil degradation, mitigate the effe

  5. Composition and intraspecific chemical variability of the essential oil from Artemisia herba-alba growing wild in a Tunisian arid zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mighri, Hédi; Akrout, Ahmed; El-jeni, Hajer; Zaidi, Slah; Tomi, Félix; Casanova, Joseph; Neffati, Mohamed

    2010-11-01

    The intraspecific chemical variability of essential oils (50 samples) isolated from the aerial parts of Artemisia herba-alba Asso growing wild in the arid zone of Southeastern Tunisia was investigated. Analysis by GC (RI) and GC/MS allowed the identification of 54 essential oil components. The main compounds were β-thujone and α-thujone, followed by 1,8-cineole, camphor, chrysanthenone, trans-sabinyl acetate, trans-pinocarveol, and borneol. Chemometric analysis (k-means clustering and PCA) led to the partitioning into three groups. The composition of two thirds of the samples was dominated by α-thujone or β-thujone. Therefore, it could be expected that wild plants of A. herba-alba randomly harvested in the area of Kirchaou and transplanted by local farmers for the cultivation in arid zones of Southern Tunisia produce an essential oil belonging to the α-thujone/β-thujone chemotype and containing also 1,8-cineole, camphor, and trans-sabinyl acetate at appreciable amounts. PMID:21072770

  6. Paleomagnetism of Basaltic Lava Flows in Coreholes ICPP 213, ICPP-214, ICPP-215, and USGS 128 Near the Vadose Zone Research Park, Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center, Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, Idaho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Champion, Duane E.; Herman, Theodore C.

    2003-01-01

    A paleomagnetic study was conducted on basalt from 41 lava flows represented in about 2,300 ft of core from coreholes ICPP-213, ICPP-214, ICPP-215, and USGS 128. These wells are in the area of the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center (INTEC) Vadose Zone Research Park within the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL). Paleomagnetic measurements were made on 508 samples from the four coreholes, which are compared to each other, and to surface outcrop paleomagnetic data. In general, subhorizontal lines of correlation exist between sediment layers and between basalt layers in the area of the new percolation ponds. Some of the basalt flows and flow sequences are strongly correlative at different depth intervals and represent important stratigraphic unifying elements. Some units pinch out, or thicken or thin even over short separation distances of about 1,500 ft. A more distant correlation of more than 1 mile to corehole USGS 128 is possible for several of the basalt flows, but at greater depth. This is probably due to the broad subsidence of the eastern Snake River Plain centered along its topographic axis located to the south of INEEL. This study shows this most clearly in the oldest portions of the cored sections that have differentially subsided the greatest amount.

  7. Water quality assessment of highly polluted rivers in a semi-arid Mediterranean zone Oued Fez and Sebou River (Morocco)

    OpenAIRE

    Perrin, Jean-Louis; Rais, N; Chahinian, Nanée; Moulin, P.; Ijjaali, M.

    2014-01-01

    Oued Fez (one of the Sebou River tributaries - Morocco) allowed us to study and quantify the effect of the lack of wastewater treatment on surface water quality in semi-arid hydrological context. The analysis is based on field data collected from June 2009 to December 2011. Concentration and load patterns of nitrogen, phosphorus and chromium (used in the processing of leather) are compared in stable hydrological conditions during low flow and high flow periods in an eight-location sampling ne...

  8. Performance of Jatropha curcas L. in Semi-arid Zone: Seed Germination, Seedling Growth and Early Field Growth

    OpenAIRE

    Sharif AHAMAD; Soumai Kant JOSHI; Arif, Mohommad; Ahmed, Zakwan

    2013-01-01

    There is a lack of information on basic agronomic properties of Jatropha curcas L. (jatropha) cultivation on the marginal lands in the semi-arids. Evaluation of agronomic performance of identified elite strains of J. curcas in marginal lands would be of paramount importance for addressing gap areas in their agronomic properties and subsequently for harnessing their optimum economic potentials. The present study undertook the task of analysing the growth performance of a high oil bearing elite...

  9. When to stay, when to go: trade-offs for southern African arid-zone birds in times of drought

    OpenAIRE

    Dean, W. R. J.; Anderson, M. D.; Barnard, P.

    2009-01-01

    Arid environments remind one of the punctuated equilibriumtheory of evolution: they experience long periods of stasis and low productivity, interrupted with episodic rainfall which spurs reproduction and movement. Birds, as highly dispersive organisms, are among the most dramatic indicators of these fluctuations. Here we review birds’ two main strategies, residency and nomadism, and the trade-offs faced by individuals in uncertain times. In general, wet years stimulate higher densities of nes...

  10. Groundwater recharge estimation in semi-arid zone: a study case from the region of Djelfa (Algeria)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali Rahmani, S. E.; Chibane, Brahim; Boucefiène, Abdelkader

    2016-03-01

    Deficiency of surface water resources in semi-arid area makes the groundwater the most preferred resource to assure population increased needs. In this research we are going to quantify the rate of groundwater recharge using new hybrid model tack in interest the annual rainfall and the average annual temperature and the geological characteristics of the area. This hybrid model was tested and calibrated using a chemical tracer method called Chloride mass balance method (CMB). This hybrid model is a combination between general hydrogeological model and a hydrological model. We have tested this model in an aquifer complex in the region of Djelfa (Algeria). Performance of this model was verified by five criteria [Nash, mean absolute error (MAE), Root mean square error (RMSE), the coefficient of determination and the arithmetic mean error (AME)]. These new approximations facilitate the groundwater management in semi-arid areas; this model is a perfection and amelioration of the model developed by Chibane et al. This model gives a very interesting result, with low uncertainty. A new recharge class diagram was established by our model to get rapidly and quickly the groundwater recharge value for any area in semi-arid region, using temperature and rainfall.

  11. Characterisation, quantification and modelling of CO2 transport and interactions in a carbonate vadose zone: application to a CO2 diffusive leakage in a geological sequestration context

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Global warming is related to atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration increase and especially anthropogenic CO2 emissions. Geologic sequestration has the potential capacity and the longevity to significantly diminish anthropogenic CO2 emissions. This sequestration in deep geological formation induces leakage risks from the geological reservoir. Several leakage scenarios have been imagined. Since it could continue for a long period, inducing environmental issues and risks for human, the scenario of a diffusive leakage is the most worrying. Thus, monitoring tools and protocols are needed to set up a near-surface monitoring plan. The present thesis deals with this problematic. The aims are the characterisation, the quantification and the modelling of transport and interactions of CO2 in a carbonate unsaturated zone. This was achieved following an experimental approach on a natural pilot site in Saint-Emilion (Gironde, France), where diffusive gas leakage experiments were set up in a carbonate unsaturated zone. Different aspects were investigated during the study: natural pilot site description and instrumentation; the physical and chemical characterisation of carbonate reservoir heterogeneity; the natural functioning of the carbonate unsaturated zone and especially the set-up of a CO2 concentrations baseline; the characterisation of gas plume extension following induced diffusive leakage in the carbonate unsaturated zone and the study of gas-water-rock interactions during a CO2 diffusive leakage in a carbonate unsaturated zone through numerical simulations. The results show the importance of the carbonate reservoir heterogeneity characterisation as well as the sampling and analysing methods for the different phases. The baseline set-up is of main interest since it allows discrimination between the induced and the natural CO2 concentrations variations. The transfer of CO2 in a carbonate unsaturated zone is varying in function of physical and chemical properties. This

  12. 洛河冲积平原包气带对入渗水污染物净化能力研究%A study of purification capacity of vadose zone on pollutants from infiltration water in the Luohe alluvial plain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王现国; 郭立

    2009-01-01

    包气带是地下水补给和地下水污染的主要通道,包气带的性质直接控制了地下水的污染化速度和程度.文章以洛阳市区洛河河床岩性(以砂砾石为主)以及由亚粘土、亚砂土、中细砂等介质构成的包气带为研究对象,分析河床和包气带对污染物的自净能力,并对其天然的自净机制进行了简要分析,结论如下:洛河河床岩性对各种污染物(NO_3~-除外)的净化能力均达到90%以上;亚粘土、亚砂土、中细砂等包气带介质层对重金属(Cu~(2+)等)有很强的净化能力,而对Cl~-、Cr~(6+)的净化能力则较弱,在短时间内介质中就达到饱和而失去净化能力;在环境条件相近及水文地质条件基本相同的条件下,包气带厚度与地下水的污染程度呈负相关关系;污水经过包气带,能有效地去除污水中的有害物质,防止地下水污染.%Vadose zone is the main channel of groundwater recharge and pollution. The nature of the vadose zone directly controls the velocity and extent of groundwater pollution. In this paper, lithology (mostly sand and gravel) and the vadose zone of the Luohe bed near Luoyang are examined. The Luohe bed is composed of sub-clay, sub-sand, medium fine sand and other media. The self-purification ability of pollutants of the river bed and the vadose zone is analyzed. The natural self-purification mechanism is briefly analyzed. The results show that the self-purification ability of pollutants of the Luohe bed is as high as 90% (except NO_3~- ) . Sub-clay, sub-sand, medium fine sand and other dielectric layer of vadose zone have a strong capacity to purify heavy metal (Cu~(2+) ), but is weak to clean Cl~- and Cr~(6+), because the media can reach saturation state and lose the capacity purification in a short time. Under the similar environmental conditions and the same basic hydrogeological conditions, the thickness of vadose zone has a negative correlation to groundwater pollution. Through the

  13. Hydrogeochemical studies in the Errachidia basin. Application of environmental isotope techniques and geochemical models to the characterization of arid zone deep aquifer systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The non-availability of sufficient quantities of high quality water will soon be a serious problem in the pre-Saharan zones of Morocco, where the population is increasing and demand is growing rapidly for domestic and irrigation water supplies. This study focuses on the Errachidia Basin, which has a desert to arid climate. Thus, successful water resources management in this basin requires a quantitative understanding of its hydrological cycle. Because of its arid climate and irregular precipitation, existing data on climate are insufficient for reliable conventional hydrological modelling. Hydrogeochemical investigations employing environmental isotopes can yield data useful for calibrating hydrological models. The present study examined water sample from selected wells and boreholes in order to characterize the different aquifers chemically and isotopically, and to assess their water quality. We developed geochemical and isotopic models to identify chemical and isotopic reactions involved during hydrogeochemical evolution of the groundwaters. This study identified two distinct chemical trends in groundwater from recharge areas to discharge. The major reactions are (1) dissolution of gypsum and anhydrite, dolomite dissolution and calcite precipitation, and (2) ion exchange and halite dissolution. Isotopic characterization reveals two distinct water types corresponding to near-surface (open system), containing thermonuclear tritium and relatively high 14C and deep (closed system) groundwater, which has low 14C and no measurable tritium. (author). 8 refs, 5 figs, 2 tabs

  14. Integrating variations in the soil chloride profile and evaporativity for in-situ estimation of evaporation in arid zones: an application in south-eastern Morocco

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouhlassa, Saïdati; Ammary, Bouchaib; Paré, Samuel; Safsaf, Naima

    2016-06-01

    In arid regions, knowledge of the evaporation rate from the water table is essential for appropriate management of scarce resources and to prevent land degradation. Soil chloride profiles in the unsaturated zone of a bare soil in an arid area of south-eastern Morocco were used to assess the evaporation flux, using chloride inventories in conjunction with evaporative demand. Moisture fluxes were calculated from measured chloride concentrations on the basis of a steady-state flow model. The chloride profiles displayed large variations in concentrations and had (1) low chloride concentrations near the soil surface, (2) maximum chloride concentrations at depths of 11-14 cm beneath the soil surface, respectively in July and February, and (3) gradually decreasing chloride concentrations while depth increased below these peaks. Evaporative demands were found to be inversely proportional to the depth of evaporation fronts and proportional to evaporation fluxes. In addition, the evaporation along the profiles seems to be controlled by the soil composition and texture. The investigation of chloride profiles in February and July enabled the determination of a value for annual evaporation (˜30 mm), which is in good agreement with the value estimated by the Allison-Barnes type model (˜32 mm).

  15. Ground water input to a rare flood event in an arid zone ephemeral river identified with isotopes and chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Various isotope studies in temperate climates have shown that the shallow groundwater component feeding perennial rivers during rainfall events can be more important than surface runoff, We report here on possibly unique isotopic and chemical evidence of groundwater contributions to a rare flood event of the ephemeral Auob River during the exceptional rains of 1999/2000 in the arid/semiarid Kalahari of south-eastern Namibia. The recognition of this process was enabled by a detailed knowledge of the isotope hydrology of groundwater in the area and provided insights into aspects of the palaeo-hydrology of the Auob River catchment. (author)

  16. When to stay, when to go: trade-offs for southern African arid-zone birds in times of drought

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W.R.J. Dean

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Arid environments remind one of the punctuated equilibriumtheory of evolution: they experience long periods of stasis and low productivity, interrupted with episodic rainfall which spurs reproduction and movement. Birds, as highly dispersive organisms, are among the most dramatic indicators of these fluctuations. Here we review birds’ two main strategies, residency and nomadism, and the trade-offs faced by individuals in uncertain times. In general, wet years stimulate higher densities of nests (i.e. smaller territories, larger clutch sizes, unseasonal breeding, and at some times of year, higher breeding success. Rainfall above a certain threshold triggers breeding in resident species and an influx of nomadic species which breed and then move on. The environmental cues which trigger nomadism are sometimes poorly understood, but include distant thunderstorms for aquatic species, and perhaps for insectivores. Environmental cues that draw nomadic granivores to areas that have had recent rain are not known.

  17. An Evaluation of Unsaturated Flow Models in an Arid Climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of two unsaturated flow models in arid regions. The area selected for the study was the Area 5 Radioactive Waste Management Site (RWMS) at the Nevada Test Site in Nye County, Nevada. The two models selected for this evaluation were HYDRUS-1D [Simunek et al., 1998] and the SHAW model [Flerchinger and Saxton, 1989]. Approximately 5 years of soil-water and atmospheric data collected from an instrumented weighing lysimeter site near the RWMS were used for building the models with actual initial and boundary conditions representative of the site. Physical processes affecting the site and model performance were explored. Model performance was based on a detailed sensitivity analysis and ultimately on storage comparisons. During the process of developing descriptive model input, procedures for converting hydraulic parameters for each model were explored. In addition, the compilation of atmospheric data collected at the site became a useful tool for developing predictive functions for future studies. The final model results were used to evaluate the capacities of the HYDRUS and SHAW models for predicting soil-moisture movement and variable surface phenomena for bare soil conditions in the arid vadose zone. The development of calibrated models along with the atmospheric and soil data collected at the site provide useful information for predicting future site performance at the RWMS

  18. An Evaluation of Unsaturated Flow Models in an Arid Climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dixon, J.

    1999-12-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of two unsaturated flow models in arid regions. The area selected for the study was the Area 5 Radioactive Waste Management Site (RWMS) at the Nevada Test Site in Nye County, Nevada. The two models selected for this evaluation were HYDRUS-1D [Simunek et al., 1998] and the SHAW model [Flerchinger and Saxton, 1989]. Approximately 5 years of soil-water and atmospheric data collected from an instrumented weighing lysimeter site near the RWMS were used for building the models with actual initial and boundary conditions representative of the site. Physical processes affecting the site and model performance were explored. Model performance was based on a detailed sensitivity analysis and ultimately on storage comparisons. During the process of developing descriptive model input, procedures for converting hydraulic parameters for each model were explored. In addition, the compilation of atmospheric data collected at the site became a useful tool for developing predictive functions for future studies. The final model results were used to evaluate the capacities of the HYDRUS and SHAW models for predicting soil-moisture movement and variable surface phenomena for bare soil conditions in the arid vadose zone. The development of calibrated models along with the atmospheric and soil data collected at the site provide useful information for predicting future site performance at the RWMS.

  19. Erosion processes acting in semi-arid climate zone of the Ebro Basin (Bardenas Reales, NE of Spain)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardenas Reales is an erosive depression located in the central-western part of the Ebro Depression. May different erosion processes act on this zone: gullying, piping, mud slides and armoured mud balls among others that contribute to export great quantity of material outside the basin. Depending on lithology and physico-chemical properties erosion acting processes differ. The knowledge of that processes help us to understand the great amount of soil loss that take place on the studied zone, bigger than those recommended. (Author) 8 refs.

  20. Water quality assessment of highly polluted rivers in a semi-arid Mediterranean zone Oued Fez and Sebou River (Morocco)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrin, J. L.; Raïs, N.; Chahinian, N.; Moulin, P.; Ijjaali, M.

    2014-03-01

    Oued Fez (one of the Sebou River tributaries - Morocco) allowed us to study and quantify the effect of the lack of wastewater treatment on surface water quality in semi-arid hydrological context. The analysis is based on field data collected from June 2009 to December 2011. Concentration and load patterns of nitrogen, phosphorus and chromium (used in the processing of leather) are compared in stable hydrological conditions during low flow and high flow periods in an eight-location sampling network. The Oued Fez and the Sebou River are characterised by severe pollution downstream from the city of Fez, particularly TN (mainly NH4 and Norg), TP (mainly Ppart) and TCr. The most polluted sites are those directly under the influence of domestic and industrial waste water inputs, particularly tannery effluents. Obviously, the concentrations measured at these locations are above all environmental quality standards. Pollutant loads are very heavy in the Sebou River and can contaminate the river course for kilometres. Moreover, as the water of the Sebou River is used for the irrigation of vegetables, serious problems of public health could arise. A better understanding of contaminant dynamics and self-purifying processes in these rivers will help implement actions and steps aimed at improving water quality in the Sebou River, which is the primary water supply source in Morocco and is used for agricultural and industrials purposes as well as for drinking water.

  1. Habitat Fragmentation in Arid Zones: A Case Study of Linaria nigricans Under Land Use Changes (SE Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peñas, Julio; Benito, Blas; Lorite, Juan; Ballesteros, Miguel; Cañadas, Eva María; Martinez-Ortega, Montserrat

    2011-07-01

    Habitat fragmentation due to human activities is one of the most important causes of biodiversity loss. In Mediterranean areas the species have co-evolved with traditional farming, which has recently been replaced for more severe and aggressive practices. We use a methodological approach that enables the evaluation of the impact that agriculture and land use changes have for the conservation of sensitive species. As model species, we selected Linaria nigricans, a critically endangered plant from arid and semiarid ecosystems in south-eastern Spain. A chronosequence of the evolution of the suitable habitat for the species over more than 50 years has been reconstructed and several geometrical fragmentation indices have been calculated. A new index called fragmentation cadence (FC) is proposed to quantify the historical evolution of habitat fragmentation regardless of the habitat size. The application of this index has provided objective forecasting of the changes of each remnant population of L. nigricans. The results indicate that greenhouses and construction activities (mainly for tourist purposes) exert a strong impact on the populations of this endangered species. The habitat depletion showed peaks that constitute the destruction of 85% of the initial area in only 20 years for some populations of L. nigricans. According to the forecast established by the model, a rapid extinction could take place and some populations may disappear as early as the year 2030. Fragmentation-cadence analysis can help identify population units of primary concern for its conservation, by means of the adoption of improved management and regulatory measures.

  2. Prevalence of parasites of the local scavenging chickens in a selected semi-arid zone of Eastern Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mungube, E O; Bauni, S M; Tenhagen, B-A; Wamae, L W; Nzioka, S M; Muhammed, L; Nginyi, J M

    2008-02-01

    A study to identify and estimate the prevalence of parasites of local chickens in a semi arid area of Kenya was conducted between March 2005 and August 2006. Three hundred and sixty (360) local chickens purchased from Yathui division of Machakos were examined. Of those, 93.3% had helminths. Nematodes were recovered in 268 (74.4%) chickens whereas 245 (68.1%) had cestodes. Tetrameres americana (37.7%), Ascaridia galli (33.3%) and Heterakis gallinarum (22.8%) were the most important nematode species identified. Raillietina echinobothrida (33.3%) and Davainea proglottina (19.4%) were the two most important cestode species identified. Two coccidia species, namely Eimeria necatrix (6.7%) and E. tenella (16.7%) were isolated and identified as per location in the digestive system. Important ectoparasites identified included Echidnophaga gallinacea (76.7%), Menacanthus stramineus (79.4%) and Dermanyssus gallinae (60.0%). Endo-parasites (helminths and coccidia) occurred in significantly (p<0.05) higher frequencies during the wet season than during the dry season. On the contrary, ecto-parasites were significantly (p<0.05) more fequent during the dry season. Male chickens generally exhibited increased odds for the occurrence of parasites than female birds. Further investigations are required to establish a plausible explanation for this. Overall, parasitism was a big constraint to chicken productivity in the study area. Urgent integrated parasite control approaches should be initiated to address parasitism in chickens in the Yathui cluster. PMID:18422252

  3. Nevada test site low-level and mixed waste repository design in the unsaturated zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The Area 5 Radioactive Waste Management Site (RWMS) at the Nevada Test Site (NTS) is used for shallow land disposal of Low-Level Radioactive (LLW) and for retrievable disposal of Mixed Wastes (MW) from various Department of Energy (DOE) facilities. The site is situated in southern Nevada, one of the most arid regions of the United States. Design considerations include vadose zone monitoring in lieu of groundwater monitoring, stringent waste acceptance and packaging criteria, a waste examination and real-time radiography facility, and trench design. 4 refs

  4. Use of isotopes to study groundwater recharge in arid zones: Application to the crystalline Ahaggar massif (central Sahara)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In the crystalline and igneous Ahaggar massif, the water resources are found in some small-scale phreatic aquifers which are recharged by sporadic wadi floods. The most favourable aquifer zones are localized in the valleys, consisting of three overlying levels of varying importance: the alluvial aquifer, the weathered zone of the underlying substratum, and the deep aquifer of fissured basement, the extent of which is not limited only to wadis. In order to evaluate the recharge to the different aquifers, chemical and isotopic analyses have been carried out on a hundred samples taken at different depths. Measurements of oxygen-18, deuterium, carbon-13, carbon-14 and tritium have been carried out on these samples

  5. Isotopic and geochemical study of the soil moisture movement in the unsaturated zone in semi-arid climate (Southern Tunisia)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Continuous core were obtained by dry coring through the unsaturated zone of the Djebel Dissa (Southern Tunisia). Segments of cores were distilled under vacuum. Oxygen 18 and deuterium analyses indicate a kinetic evaporation. The evaporating resource was probably recharged through an exceptional rainy event or through a leakage of the deep confined aquifer. The modelization, according to Barnes and Allison gives an estimate of 1 mm a-1 for the evaporation rate. The ionic balance is calculated after lixiviation of soil aliquotes. It shows an accumulation of salts above a depth of 7 m in the profile, in agreement with the isotope profile. (author)

  6. Thixotropic gel for vadose zone remediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Riha, Brian D.; Looney, Brian B.

    2015-10-27

    A thixotropic gel suitable for use in subsurface bioremediation is provided along with a process of using the gel. The thixotropic gel provides a non-migrating injectable substrate that can provide below ground barrier properties. In addition, the gel components provide for a favorable environment in which certain contaminants are preferentially sequestered in the gel and subsequently remediated by either indigenous or introduced microorganisms.

  7. Thixotropic gel for vadose zone remediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhia, Brian D.

    2011-03-01

    A thixotropic gel suitable for use in subsurface bioremediation is provided along with a process of using the gel. The thixotropic gel provides a non-migrating injectable substrate that can provide below ground barrier properties. In addition, the gel components provide for a favorable environment in which certain contaminants are preferentially sequestered in the gel and subsequently remediated by either indigenous or introduced microorganisms.

  8. DEVELOPMENT OF VADOSE ZONE HYDRAULIC PARAMETER VALUES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Several approaches have been developed to establish a relation between the soil-moisture retention curve and readily available soil properties. Those relationships are referred to as pedotransfer functions. Described in this paper are the rationale, approach, and corroboration for use of a nonparametric pedotransfer function for the estimation of soil hydraulic-parameter values at the yucca Mountain area in Nevada for simulations of net infiltration. This approach, shown to be applicable for use at Yucca Mountain, is also applicable for use at the Hanford Site where the underlying data were collected

  9. Evolution of chemical and isotopic composition of inorganic carbon in a complex semi-arid zone environment: Consequences for groundwater dating using radiocarbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meredith, K. T.; Han, L. F.; Hollins, S. E.; Cendón, D. I.; Jacobsen, G. E.; Baker, A.

    2016-09-01

    Estimating groundwater age is important for any groundwater resource assessment and radiocarbon (14C) dating of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) can provide this information. In semi-arid zone (i.e. water-limited environments), there are a multitude of reasons why 14C dating of groundwater and traditional correction models may not be directly transferable. Some include; (1) the complex hydrological responses of these systems that lead to a mixture of different ages in the aquifer(s), (2) the varied sources, origins and ages of organic matter in the unsaturated zone and (3) high evaporation rates. These all influence the evolution of DIC and are not easily accounted for in traditional correction models. In this study, we determined carbon isotope data for; DIC in water, carbonate minerals in the sediments, sediment organic matter, soil gas CO2 from the unsaturated zone, and vegetation samples. The samples were collected after an extended drought, and again after a flood event, to capture the evolution of DIC after varying hydrological regimes. A graphical method (Han et al., 2012) was applied for interpretation of the carbon geochemical and isotopic data. Simple forward mass-balance modelling was carried out on key geochemical processes involving carbon and agreed well with observed data. High values of DIC and δ13CDIC, and low 14CDIC could not be explained by a simple carbonate mineral-CO2 gas dissolution process. Instead it is suggested that during extended drought, water-sediment interaction leads to ion exchange processes within the top ∼10-20 m of the aquifer which promotes greater calcite dissolution in saline groundwater. This process was found to contribute more than half of the DIC, which is from a mostly 'dead' carbon source. DIC is also influenced by carbon exchange between DIC in water and carbonate minerals found in the top 2 m of the unsaturated zone. This process occurs because of repeated dissolution/precipitation of carbonate that is dependent on

  10. Influence of climate variability on water partitioning and effective energy and mass transfer (EEMT) in a semi-arid critical zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zapata-Rios, X.; Brooks, P. D.; Troch, P. A.; McIntosh, J.; Rasmussen, C.

    2015-08-01

    The Critical Zone (CZ) is the heterogeneous, near-surface layer of the planet that regulates life-sustaining resources. Previous research has demonstrated that a quantification of the influxes of effective energy and mass (EEMT) to the CZ can predict its structure and function. In this study, we quantify how climate variability in the last three decades (1984-2012) has affected water availability and the temporal trends in EEMT. This study takes place in the 1200 km2 upper Jemez River Basin in northern New Mexico. The analysis of climate, water availability, and EEMT was based on records from two high elevation SNOTEL stations, PRISM data, catchment scale discharge, and satellite derived net primary productivity (MODIS). Records from the two SNOTEL stations showed clear increasing trends in winter and annual temperatures (+1.0-1.3 °C decade-1; +1.2-1.4 °C decade-1, respectively), decreasing trends in winter and annual precipitation (-41.6-51.4 mm decade-1; -69.8-73.2 mm decade-1, respectively) and maximum Snow Water Equivalent (SWE; -33.1-34.7 mm decade-1). The water partitioning fluxes at the basin scale showed statistically significant decreasing trends in precipitation (-61.7 mm decade-1), discharge (-17.6 mm decade-1) and vaporization (-45.7 mm decade-1). Similarly Q50, an indicator of snowmelt timing, is occurring 4.3 days decade-1 earlier. Results from this study indicated a decreasing trend in water availability, a reduction in forest productivity (4 g C m-2 per 10 mm of reduction in Precipitation) and EEMT (1.2-1.3 MJ m2 decade-1). These changes in EEMT point towards a hotter, drier and less productive ecosystem which may alter critical zone processes in high elevation semi-arid systems.

  11. Effect of Wetting-Drying Cycles on Redistribution of Lead in Some Semi-Arid Zone Soils Spiked with a Lead Salt

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    H.KHODAVERDILOO; M.RAHMANIAN; S.REZAPOUR; S.GHORBANI DASHTAKI; H.HADI; F.X.HAN

    2012-01-01

    Mobility and bioavailability of lead (Pb) could be affected considerably by soil physicochemical properties; however,less is known about the effect of Pb levels and aging time.This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of Pb levels and wetting-drying (WD) cycles on distribution and bioavailability of Pb in three semi-arid zone soils treated with different levels of Pb(NO3)2.Wetting-drying cycles simulated the actual field irrigation in the semi-arid soils.A soil with a long history of Pb contamination was also taken as a reference soil.The soils were spiked with various levels of Pb and incubated under WD cycles for 160 d.Sequential extractions and batch sorption experiments were performed to assess the fractionation of Pb in the spiked soils.Redistribution index (Uts) and reduced partitioning parameter (IR) were applied to semi-quantify the distribution of Pb in the spiked soils.A small amount of Pb sorbed was desorbed by the soils,indicating a strong and irreversible binding of Pb in the studied soils.Contribution of carbonate-bound (Car) and residual (Res) Pb fractions to the total Pb of the soils was more than 97%.The Car,soluble plus exchangeable (SE),and organic matter-bound (OMB) fractions of Pb were transferred to the Res fraction under the WD cycles.The IR and Uts values were influenced by Pb loading levels and WD; therefore,the Pb lability and/or redistribution pattern could semi-quantitatively be assessed via these parameters.At the end of the experiment,the IR and Uts values for the Pb salt-spiked soils did not show the quasiequilibrium state.The lability of Pb in the soils decreased with increasing incubation time and showed a strong dependence on Pb levels and soil chemical composition.WD cycles significantly affected the overall lability of Pb in soils through influencing the redistribution of Pb among solid-phase components.

  12. The use of unsaturated zone solutes and deuterium profiles in the study of groundwater recharge in the semi-arid zone of Nigeria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Two unsaturated zone profiles (MF and MG) in NE Nigeria have been sampled for inert tracers (Cl, Br, NO3 and δ2H to investigate recharge rates and processes. The upper MF and MG profiles have sandy lithology, lower moisture content (2H around -30 per mille. All these indicate that present day recharge is taking place. The lower section of the MF profile shows a distinct contrast with high moisture content (up to 27%), very high chloride (average 2892 mg/L) and relatively enriched deuterium (-12 per mille), indicating the effect of evaporative enrichment. This lower section corresponds to low permeability lacustrine deposits probably representing the former bed of Lake Chad where little or no infiltration has been occurring since the mid-Holocene when the lake extended over this area. The sand-covered areas of the Sahel of the NE Nigeria provide an important phreatic aquifer. An estimation of the amount of recharge using the unsaturated zone chloride mass balance gives significant rates of 14 mm/a and 22 mm/a for the upper MF and MG profiles respectively. These rates mainly span the period of the recent Sahel drought and even higher recharge rates may occur during wetter periods. These rates fall within the 14 mm/a to 53 mm/a range estimated for the Manga Grasslands area in the NE Nigeria obtained in an earlier study. From the water resource point of view, the region has potential for perennially-recharged groundwater resources that can sustain the present abstraction level which is mainly via dug wells. (author)

  13. Influence of climate variability on water partitioning and effective energy and mass transfer in a semi-arid critical zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zapata-Rios, Xavier; Brooks, Paul D.; Troch, Peter A.; McIntosh, Jennifer; Rasmussen, Craig

    2016-03-01

    The critical zone (CZ) is the heterogeneous, near-surface layer of the planet that regulates life-sustaining resources. Previous research has demonstrated that a quantification of the influxes of effective energy and mass transfer (EEMT) to the CZ can predict its structure and function. In this study, we quantify how climate variability in the last 3 decades (1984-2012) has affected water availability and the temporal trends in EEMT. This study takes place in the 1200 km2 upper Jemez River basin in northern New Mexico. The analysis of climate, water availability, and EEMT was based on records from two high-elevation SNOTEL stations, PRISM data, catchment-scale discharge, and satellite-derived net primary productivity (MODIS). Results from this study indicated a decreasing trend in water availability, a reduction in forest productivity (4 g C m-2 per 10 mm of reduction in precipitation), and decreasing EEMT (1.2-1.3 MJ m2 decade-1). Although we do not know the timescales of CZ change, these results suggest an upward migration of CZ/ecosystem structure on the order of 100 m decade-1, and that decadal-scale differences in EEMT are similar to the differences between convergent/hydrologically subsidized and planar/divergent landscapes, which have been shown to be very different in vegetation and CZ structure.

  14. Dynamics of Floodwater Infiltration and Groundwater Recharge Under Ephemeral Channels in Arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tatarsky, B.; Dahan, O.; Enzel, Y.

    2007-05-01

    Shallow alluvial aquifers underneath ephemeral streams are often the only reliable source of water that can sustain human habitation in arid environments (e.g. Arava Valley, Israel; Rio Andarax, Spain; Kuiseb River, Namibia). The main source of replenishment of these alluvial aquifers is recharge from floodwater infiltration. Accordingly, effective management of surface water and groundwater in arid regions requires a better understanding of the processes controlling floodwater infiltration and recharge of alluvial aquifers. This study focuses on understanding the dynamic process of floodwater infiltration from ephemeral channels while implementing innovative methods specifically designed to quantify the recharge fluxes. The monitoring system provides real-time continuous measurements of the hydraulic conditions in all three domains involved in the recharge process: (a) the flood, (b) water-content variations along the unsaturated profile, (c) the groundwater response to the recharge event. Water-content variations along the unsaturated profile were monitored using flexible TDR (FTDR) probes installed along slanted boreholes underneath the stream channel. Water levels and salinity of both the flood and the groundwater were measured simultaneously. Two study sites were selected for this work: the Buffels River, South Africa and the Kuiseb River, Namibia. The monitoring stations installed at those sites recorded several flood events during 2005/2006. Data collected during this period revealed the dynamic process in which floodwater percolates through the vadose zone and recharges the groundwater. Each flood initiated an infiltration event expressed by wetting of the vadose zone and a rise in the water table. The sequential wetting of the vadose zone allowed direct calculations of the wetting-front propagation velocities and percolation fluxes from land surface down to the groundwater. With the arrival of the wetting front to the water table, groundwater began to rise

  15. Processes affecting groundwater quality in arid zones: The case of the Bou-Areg coastal aquifer (North Morocco)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    . Only locally, in the southern part of the aquifer, close to the city of Kariat Arkmane, the high salinization observed may be attributed to the presence of lagoon water intrusion. The isotopic composition of dissolved NO3- indicates manure and septic effluents, especially in urban areas and in the central part of the plain, and synthetic fertilizers in the agricultural zone as the main drivers for human induced pollution. The study shows that agricultural return flow has significantly modified the chemistry of the system and it is a prime example of the human-induced changes over coastal environments. Saline water intrusion from the lagoon in the shallow aquifer is negligible, while discharge of polluted groundwater into the lagoon has been found to partially alter its quality

  16. Timing and causes of gully erosion in the riparian zone of the semi-arid tropical Victoria River, Australia: Management implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCloskey, G. L.; Wasson, R. J.; Boggs, G. S.; Douglas, M.

    2016-08-01

    Gully erosion in the seasonally wet tropics of Australia is a major source of sediment in rivers. Stabilization of gullies to reduce impacts on aquatic ecosystems and water storages is a focus for management. However, the cause of the gully erosion is poorly understood and so a critical context for soil conservation is missing. It is uncertain if they are the result of post-European cattle grazing or are they much older and related to non-human factors. The causes of riparian gully erosion along a reach of the Victoria River in the semi-arid tropics of Australia were investigated using several methods. Gully complexes were described and characterised by two major components: a Flood Drainage Channel (FDC) and upslope of this an Outer Erosion Feature (OEF) characterised by badlands set within an amphitheatre. The OEF is likely to be a major source of sediment that appears to be of recent origin. A review of historical records, combined with Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) dating, showed that the FDCs were well established prior to the introduction of domestic stock. It also showed that the badlands began to develop about 90 years ago; that is, about 40 years after the arrival of domestic stock. In addition, an analysis of aerial photos coupled with an on-ground survey and analysis of fallout radionuclides revealed that erosion processes are still active within the gully complexes. While the FDCs are natural drainage channels, cattle grazing probably triggered the badland formation, with the expansion aided by increased rainfall in the past 40 years. Therefore, the OEFs are of human origin and protection from grazing of the riparian zone should slow badland erosion and reduce sediment input to the river.

  17. Absent otoacoustic emissions predict otitis media in young Aboriginal children: A birth cohort study in Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children in an arid zone of Western Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stokes Annette

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Otitis media (OM is the most common paediatric illness for which antibiotics are prescribed. In Australian Aboriginal children OM is frequently asymptomatic and starts at a younger age, is more common and more likely to result in hearing loss than in non-Aboriginal children. Absent transient evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAEs may predict subsequent risk of OM. Methods 100 Aboriginal and 180 non-Aboriginal children in a semi-arid zone of Western Australia were followed regularly from birth to age 2 years. Tympanometry was conducted at routine field follow-up from age 3 months. Routine clinical examination by an ENT specialist was to be done 3 times and hearing assessment by an audiologist twice. TEOAEs were measured at ages Results At routine ENT specialist clinics, OM was detected in 55% of 184 examinations in Aboriginal children and 26% of 392 examinations in non-Aboriginal children; peak prevalence was 72% at age 5–9 months in Aboriginal children and 40% at 10–14 months in non-Aboriginal children. Moderate-severe hearing loss was present in 32% of 47 Aboriginal children and 7% of 120 non-Aboriginal children aged 12 months or more. TEOAE responses were present in 90% (46/51 of Aboriginal children and 99% (120/121 of non-Aboriginal children aged Overall prevalence of type B tympanograms at field follow-up was 50% (n = 78 in Aboriginal children and 20% (n = 95 in non-Aboriginal children. Conclusion The burden of middle ear disease is high in all children, but particularly in Aboriginal children, one-third of whom suffer from moderate-severe hearing loss. In view of the frequently silent nature of OM, every opportunity must be taken to screen for OM. Measurement of TEOAEs at age 1–2 months to identify children at risk of developing OM should be evaluated in a routine health service setting.

  18. FEATURES OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF CORN HYBRIDS DEPENDING ON THE TERMS OF PLANTING AND TMTD-PLUS DISINFECTANT IN THE ARID ZONE CENTRAL CISCAUCASIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kravchenko R. V.

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available There was given the review of the results of the study in the arid zone of Central Ciscaucasia, the influence of planting terms and presowing seed treatment by the drug called "TMTD-plus", containing the growth stimulator Krezatsin in its composition, on the development of corn hybrids of different maturity groups of the selection of Krasnodar Research Institute of Agriculture named after P.P. Lukyanenko (Ross 199, Ross 299, Krasnodar 382 and Krasnodar 410 and the All-Russian Research Institute of Corn (Mashuk 170, Newton, RIC 345 and Eric, as well as middlematurity population Rossiyskaya 1. The studies were conducted in accordance with the thematic plan of scientific researches of the chair of crop and forage production of the Stavropol State Agrarian University. The soil surface was presented as southern black earth. The technology of growing of maize on the experimental plot corresponds to the standard one for the present area and cultivar. The predecessor is winter wheat. Sowing was performed in three terms. The first (early sowing term was carried out at t = + 7 ... +8 ° C. The second (recommended - when t = + 10 ... + 12 ° C. The third (later sowing time was carried out at t = +15 ° C. The plant density: early-maturing hybrids – 70 thousand pieces/ha, is mid-maturing ones – 60 thousand pieces/ha, middle-ripe – 50 thousand piece/ha, middle-later ones – 45 thousand pieces/ha. The scheme is single-row, with spacing of 70 cm. The application of the studied drug TMTD-plus helped to reduce the growing season of maize plants for one - two days. Thus, changing the sowing terms of maize hybrids and populations, we can largely control the development of plants changing the length of the growing season to two weeks and form a harvesting conveyor, thereby reducing the intensity of field work

  19. The VLF EM Method Used for Verification of Fracture/ Shear Zone Aquifers in the Hyper-arid Eastern Desert, Egypt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauck, W. A.; Sultan, M.; Wagdy, A.; Roouf, O. A.

    2007-05-01

    An integrated program using Landsat remote sensing and ground follow-up with the Very Low Frequency (VLF) geophysical method was applied to the basement rocks of the Red Sea Hills (Eastern Desert) to locate fracture and shear-system aquifers. This part of the Nubian Shield was formed by accretion of a complex of ensimatic and ensialic island arcs and interleaving oceanic basins that were later accreted against the old African continent. Hence, melange and ophiolite sequences are common. This basement complex was intensely fractured (630- 530 Mybp) by the Najd transcurrent shear system (NSS) along a NW-SE trend that is up to 350 km wide, and finally the ocean-arc complex was intruded (~550 Mybp) by anorogenic K-granites. A false-color composite image was created, from Landsat thematic mapper band ratio images that are sensitive to the Fe-bearing aluminosilicate, hydroxyl, and opaque phase content of rocks. On these images mafic rocks (e.g., gabbro and mafic volcanics) rich in Fe-bearing aluminosilicates appear in shades of blue, ultramafics (e.g., serpentinites) rich in hydroxyl-bearing phases and opaque phases appear in shades of red, and granitoid rock units poor in the above phases show as green areas. Using this base map (effectively a pseudo geologic map) and a co-registered DEM, locations of potential shallow water occurrence were plotted based on the following criteria: 1) intersection of the NSS system with transverse faults defining wadis, 2) intersection of two or more fault zones, 3) within highly deformed melange units, especially their internal lithologic contacts and their crossings of wadis, 4) relatively unfractured younger dikes and their intersections with wadis. The VLF instrument was first used to make profiles at a number of existing water wells located at the structural intersections described above, to verify that sub-vertical sheet-like electrical conductors (water-filled fissures) could be successfully located with this instrument. Then

  20. Assessment of Microbial Process Potential for Natural Attenuation of Contaminants in the Thick Vadose Zone beneath the Wastewater-irrigated Area of Southern Shijiazhuang City, Hebei Province%河北省石家庄市南部污灌区厚层包气带污染物自然衰减的微生物作用潜力评价

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张翠云; 张胜; 何泽; 殷密英; 宁卓

    2014-01-01

    本次研究的目的是利用传统的培养技术和现代的磷脂脂肪酸 PLFA(Phosphor Lipid Fatty Acid)技术、Biolog技术、16 S rRNA基因变性梯度凝胶电泳DGGE(Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis)及测序技术,调查石家庄市南部污灌区厚近30 m包气带微生物含量、分布、活性和多样性,评价污灌区厚层包气带污染物自然衰减的微生物作用潜力。包气带沉积物样品通过岩芯钻探获得,用于物理、化学和微生物分析。结果显示,土壤层(5~20 cm)微生物含量高,活性高,代谢类型多,可培养的异养菌与自养菌、好氧异养菌、兼性厌氧异氧菌和专性厌氧异养菌共存;土壤层下伏包气带微生物含量较低,活性降低,代谢类型减少,可培养的细菌主要是好氧性异养菌、兼性厌氧异养菌和好氧自养菌,而且随岩性而变化,在砂层和重粘土层含量低,活性低,而在亚粘土层含量和活性大。研究结果指示土壤层具有很高的污染物生物自然衰减潜力,而且下伏包气带仍有这种潜力,特别是下部溶