Benchscale Assessment of the Efficacy of a Reactive Core Mat to Isolate PAH-Spiked Aquatic Sediments
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This paper describes the results of a benchscale testing program to assess the efficacy of a reactive core mat (RCM) for short term isolation and partial remediation of contaminated, subaqueous sediments. The 1.25 cm thick RCM (with a core reactive material such as organoclay with filtering layers on top and bottom) is placed on the sediment, and approximately 7.5 – 10 cm of overlying soil is placed on the RCM for stability and protection.

A set of experiments were conducted to measure the sorption characteristics of the mat core (organoclay) and sediment used in the experiments, and to determine the fate of semi-volatile organic contaminants and non-reactive tracers through the sediment and reactive mat. The experimental study was conducted on naphthalene-spiked Neponset River (Milton, MA) sediment. The results show nonlinear sorption behavior for organoclay, with sorption capacity increasing with increasing naphthalene concentration. Neponset River sediment showed a notably high sorption capacity, likely due to the relatively high organic carbon fraction (14%). The fate and transport experiments demonstrated the short term efficiency of the reactive mat to capture the contamination that is associated with the post-capping period during which the highest consolidation-induced advective flux occurs, driving solid particles, pore fluid and soluble contaminants toward the reactive mat. The goal of the mat placement is to provide a physical filtering and chemically reactive layer to isolate contamination from the overlying water column. An important finding is that because of the high sorption capacity of the Neponset River sediment, the physical filtering capability of the mat is as critical as its chemical reactive capacity.


Publication Summary

  • Geosyntec Authors: Dogus Meric
  • All Authors: Dogus Meric, Sara Barbuto, Thomas C. Sheahan, James P. Shine, Akram N. Alshawabkeh
  • Title: Benchscale Assessment of the Efficacy of a Reactive Core Mat to Isolate PAH-Spiked Aquatic Sediments
  • Event or Publication: Soil and Sediment Contamination: An International Journal
  • Practice Areas: Sediment Assessment and Remediation
  • Date: 2013