Severe petroleum hydrocarbon contamination (styrene and the BTEX compounds: benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and the isomers of xylene) from leaking sewers was detected in a Quaternary aquifer below a chemical plant in the Padana Plain, Italy. From 1994, active pump and treat remediation has been employed. The site is bordered by canals which, in combination with variable pumping rates and groundwater flow directions, control groundwater levels. In this study we sought to determine the fate of styrene at the site within a mixed styrene/BTEX plume where the hydraulic boundaries induced strong seasonal variations in flows. In order to determine the fate of styrene, detailed field investigations provided intensive depth profile information. This information was then incorporated into a staged flow and reactive transport modelling. Three sets of measurements were obtained from sampling multilevel samplers (MLSs) under different hydraulic conditions at the site. These included measurements of BTEX, styrene, all major ions, pH and redox potential. A three-dimensional transient flow model was developed and calibrated to simulate an unconfined sandy aquifer with a variable flow field. Subsequently a reactive, multi-component transport model was employed to simulate the fate of dissolved BTEX and styrene along a selected flow line at the site. Each petroleum hydrocarbon compound was transported as independent species. Different, kinetically controlled degradation rates and a toxicity effect were simulated to explain the observed, selective degradation of pollutants in groundwater. Calibration of the model was accomplished by comparison with the three different sets of measurements obtained from the MLS devices. The results from various scenarios show that the detailed simulation of geochemical changes can be very useful to improve the site's conceptual model.

Modelling the fate of styrene in a mixed petroleum hydrocarbon plume

GARGINI, ALESSANDRO;
2009

Abstract

Severe petroleum hydrocarbon contamination (styrene and the BTEX compounds: benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and the isomers of xylene) from leaking sewers was detected in a Quaternary aquifer below a chemical plant in the Padana Plain, Italy. From 1994, active pump and treat remediation has been employed. The site is bordered by canals which, in combination with variable pumping rates and groundwater flow directions, control groundwater levels. In this study we sought to determine the fate of styrene at the site within a mixed styrene/BTEX plume where the hydraulic boundaries induced strong seasonal variations in flows. In order to determine the fate of styrene, detailed field investigations provided intensive depth profile information. This information was then incorporated into a staged flow and reactive transport modelling. Three sets of measurements were obtained from sampling multilevel samplers (MLSs) under different hydraulic conditions at the site. These included measurements of BTEX, styrene, all major ions, pH and redox potential. A three-dimensional transient flow model was developed and calibrated to simulate an unconfined sandy aquifer with a variable flow field. Subsequently a reactive, multi-component transport model was employed to simulate the fate of dissolved BTEX and styrene along a selected flow line at the site. Each petroleum hydrocarbon compound was transported as independent species. Different, kinetically controlled degradation rates and a toxicity effect were simulated to explain the observed, selective degradation of pollutants in groundwater. Calibration of the model was accomplished by comparison with the three different sets of measurements obtained from the MLS devices. The results from various scenarios show that the detailed simulation of geochemical changes can be very useful to improve the site's conceptual model.
Colombani N.; Mastrocicco M.; Gargini A.; Davis G.; Prommer H.
File in questo prodotto:
Eventuali allegati, non sono esposti

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/111462
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 17
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 15
social impact