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Handbook of groundwater remediation using permeable reactive barriers--Applications to radionuclides, trace metals, and nutrients


The use of permeable reactive barriers (PRBs) to remove trace metals, radionuclides, and nutrients from groundwater has lagged behind the use of this technology to remove organic contaminants, such as chlorinated hydrocarbons. To assist in the development and application of PRBs to remove inorganic contaminants, the American Geophysical Union convened a special session on "Utilizing Permeable Reactive Barriers to Remediate Groundwater Contaminated by Radionuclides and Other Inorganic Contaminants" at its annual Fall meeting December 13-14, 1999, in San Francisco, California. Chapters contained in this volume are updated and expanded versions of the materials presented during the special session.

The book contains 17 chapters that are organized into 4 sections. Preceding the first section, Chapter 1 provides an introduction to PRBs and includes overviews on their historical development, uptake mechanisms, longevity, and design.

Section 1, "Innovations in Design, Construction, and Evaluation of PRBs," is composed of five chapters. Chapters 2 and 3 present the design and application of limestone drains in the treatment of acidic mine drainage from coal and metal mining districts as well as coastal areas that have been recently drained. A description of the use of a PRB combined with a newly developed passive extraction system referred to as a GeoSiphonTM is presented in Chapter 4. The last two chapters in this section (5 and 6) describe new techniques for the emplacement of PRBs and include the use of in-situ redox manipulation and deep aquifer remediation tools.

Section 2, "Development of Reactive Materials," is focused on the development of new and innovative materials for use in permeable reactive barriers. The new materials described in this section include an iron oxide/phosphate (Chapter 7) and a MultiBarrier consisting of four sequential layers designed to treat a mixed contaminant plume (Chapter 8).

Section 3, "Evaluation of Chemical and Biological Processes," provides descriptions of some of the removal mechanisms or interactions that occur in PRBs. Chapter 9 evaluates chemical reactions responsible for uranium uptake on apatite materials. The next three chapters focus on zero valent iron (ZVI), currently (2002) the most popular material used in PRBs. Chapter 10 uses a variety of geochemical and microbiological tools to evaluate the influence of sulfate-reducing bacteria on PRB performance. The chemical mechanism(s) responsible for uranium removal in ZVI PRBs are not completely understood. Chapter 11 presents 3 years of monitoring data to document the biogeochemical interactions that occur in a ZVI PRB and presents evidence on how uranium can be removed by abiotic reductive precipitation. Solid-phase evidence from core samples collected from two different ZVI PRBs are presented in Chapter 12 and provides evidence for uranium removal by adsorption to ferric oxides and oxyhyroxides.

Section 4, "Case Studies of Permeable Reactive Barrier Installations," presents five case studies of PRB installations in the United States (Utah, Colorado, North Carolina, and Tennessee) and Canada (British Columbia and Ontario). The first three chapters in this section focus on the removal of uranium from contaminated groundwater. Chapter 13 presents design and performance results from a PRB installed to remove uranium and associated contaminants from an ore processing facility in Utah. Uranium removal results from a 3-year field demonstration of three different PRBs are presented in Chapter 14. Chapter 15 presents the results of a 3-year field demonstration designed to removed uranium and associated metals from a mill tailings repository site in southwestern Colorado. Results from a case study using sodium dithionite for the in-situ reduction of chromate are presented in Chapter 16. Chapter 17 presents results that utilize municipal compost to neutralize acidity and remove heavy metals from two sites in Canada.

Table of Contents

About the Book

Naftz, David, Morrison, S.J., Fuller, C.C., and Davis, J.A., eds., 2002,
Handbook of groundwater remediation using permeable reactive barriers--Applications to radionuclides, trace metals, and nutrients: San Diego, Calif., Academic Press, 539 p. (ISBN 0-12-513563-7)

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