GEOPHYSICS AND SITE CHARACTERIZATION AT THE HANFORD SITE THE SUCCESSFUL USE OF ELECTRICAL RESISTIVITY TO POSITION BOREHOLES TO DEFINE DEEP VADOSE ZONE CONTAMINATION - 11509

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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 ... continued below

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MJ, GANDER; KD, LEARY; MT, LEVITT & CW, MILLER January 14, 2011.

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  • Hanford Site (Wash.)
    Publisher Info: Hanford Site (HNF), Richland, WA (United States))
    Place of Publication: Richland, Washington

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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 vadose zone (i.e., 79 m [260 ft] bgs) within the footprint of the Crib, and (b) 15 to 30 m (50 to 100 ft) east of the Crib footprint, where contaminants are inferred to have migrated through relatively permeable soils. Confirmation of the presence of contamination in historic boreholes correlates well with mapping from the 2010 survey, and serves as a basis to site future characterization boreholes that will likely intersect contamination both laterally and at depth.

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  • WM2011 WASTE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE DOE 03/07/2011 THRU 03/11/2011 PHOENIX AZ

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  • Report No.: CHPRC-01168-FP Rev 0
  • Grant Number: DE-AC06-08RL14788
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1004616
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc829488

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  • January 14, 2011

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  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • Sept. 1, 2016, 1:22 p.m.

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MJ, GANDER; KD, LEARY; MT, LEVITT & CW, MILLER. GEOPHYSICS AND SITE CHARACTERIZATION AT THE HANFORD SITE THE SUCCESSFUL USE OF ELECTRICAL RESISTIVITY TO POSITION BOREHOLES TO DEFINE DEEP VADOSE ZONE CONTAMINATION - 11509, article, January 14, 2011; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc829488/: accessed April 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.