Modeling LNAPL transport in the Vadose Zone

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Groundwater contamination is an ever growing problem. In particular, problems associated with light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) such as gasoline, diesel fuel, and jet fuels are becoming more common. This paper presents the development and application of an analytical model for predicting LNAPL concentrations at the water table. Based on the volume of the spill, the model has two parts: a pancake model for predicting the behavior of the LNAPL if the spill volume is large enough to reach the water table; and an advection/dispersion model that assumes that the LNAPL does not reach the water table as a slug, ... continued below

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6 p.

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Tomasko, D. & Butler, J.P. July 1, 1995.

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Description

Groundwater contamination is an ever growing problem. In particular, problems associated with light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) such as gasoline, diesel fuel, and jet fuels are becoming more common. This paper presents the development and application of an analytical model for predicting LNAPL concentrations at the water table. Based on the volume of the spill, the model has two parts: a pancake model for predicting the behavior of the LNAPL if the spill volume is large enough to reach the water table; and an advection/dispersion model that assumes that the LNAPL does not reach the water table as a slug, but creates a contaminated soil layer from which soluble LNAPL components can be mobilized and transported vertically downward while undergoing advection, dispersion, sorption, volatilization, and biodegradation. Maximum and current concentrations are calculated at the water table for the pancake model using a solubility-limited approach, and an analytical expression derived using Laplace transforms for the advection/dispersion model. The behavior and sensitivity of the model is evaluated for a hypothetical site using an LNAPL having ten components that represent a cross section of organic compounds commonly found in spills including BTEX, branch alkanes, and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons. Results of the study indicate that the most important LNAPL group is the BTEX compounds, and that, of these, benzene would have the largest maximum concentration at the water table because of its relatively long biodegradation half-life. Other parameters of importance include total precipitation, depth to the water table, and the fraction of organic carbon in the soil.

Physical Description

6 p.

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OSTI as DE95014153

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  • International groundwater management symposium, San Antonio, TX (United States), 14-18 Aug 1995

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  • Other: DE95014153
  • Report No.: ANL/EA/CP--85961
  • Report No.: CONF-9508138--1
  • Grant Number: W-31-109-ENG-38
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 102510
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc621314

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  • July 1, 1995

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  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • April 21, 2016, 9:55 p.m.

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Tomasko, D. & Butler, J.P. Modeling LNAPL transport in the Vadose Zone, article, July 1, 1995; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc621314/: accessed November 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.