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

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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 ... continued below

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Smith, Robert W. & Fujita, Yoshiko November 7, 2007.

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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 proposed bioremediation technique at a contaminated site located within the 100-N area of the Hanford, Washington site **Assessing the role of nitrification on the persistence of precipitated calcite by modifying primers for identification of the amoA gene region of various ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) for characterizing AOB in the field

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  • Report No.: DOE/ER63486-Final
  • Grant Number: FG07-02ER63486
  • DOI: 10.2172/919070 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 919070
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc888183

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  • November 7, 2007

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  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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Smith, Robert W. & Fujita, Yoshiko. 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, report, November 7, 2007; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc888183/: accessed August 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.