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Bioremediation in fractured rock: 2. Mobilization of chloroethene compounds from the rock matrix

March 8, 2018

A mass balance is formulated to evaluate the mobilization of chlorinated ethene compounds (CE) from the rock matrix of a fractured mudstone aquifer under pre- and postbioremediation conditions. The analysis relies on a sparse number of monitoring locations and is constrained by a detailed description of the groundwater flow regime. Groundwater flow modeling developed under the site characterization identified groundwater fluxes to formulate the CE mass balance in the rock volume exposed to the injected remediation amendments. Differences in the CE fluxes into and out of the rock volume identify the total CE mobilized from diffusion, desorption, and nonaqueous phase liquid dissolution under pre- and postinjection conditions. The initial CE mass in the rock matrix prior to remediation is estimated using analyses of CE in rock core. The CE mass mobilized per year under preinjection conditions is small relative to the total CE mass in the rock, indicating that current pump-and-treat and natural attenuation conditions are likely to require hundreds of years to achieve groundwater concentrations that meet regulatory guidelines. The postinjection CE mobilization rate increased by approximately an order of magnitude over the 5 years of monitoring after the amendment injection. This rate is likely to decrease and additional remediation applications over several decades would still be needed to reduce CE mass in the rock matrix to levels where groundwater concentrations in fractures achieve regulatory standards.

Publication Year 2018
Title Bioremediation in fractured rock: 2. Mobilization of chloroethene compounds from the rock matrix
DOI 10.1111/gwat.12586
Authors Allen M. Shapiro, Claire R. Tiedeman, Thomas E. Imbrigiotta, Daniel J. Goode, Paul A. Hsieh, Pierre Lacombe, Mary F. DeFlaun, Scott R. Drew, Gary P. Curtis
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Groundwater
Index ID 70195938
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization National Research Program - Eastern Branch