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Assessment of in situ solvent extraction for remediation of coal tar sites: Column studies

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Part of a study to assess the feasibility of coal tar site remediation by the injection and recovery of water-miscible, biodegradable solvents is described. The overall objective of the study was to obtain estimates of cleanup times and solvent volumes required for a hypothetical contaminated site. We describe the results of column experiments, performed by passing solvent-water solutions through glass bead-packed columns contaminated with coal tar blobs at low volumetric saturation. This experimental design allowed the investigation of dissolution rate limitations at residual saturations similar to those observed in the field, albeit under more homogeneous conditions. The column effluent data were modeled with a modified advection-dispersion equation that includes a mass-transfer source term for coal tar dissolution. This source term empirically relates mass transfer to experimental variables such as coal tar saturation and solvent flow velocity using fitting parameters. Values of parameters in the mass-transfer source term were estimated from experimental data. The modeling approach and the parameter values developed in this study have been used in simulations of the in situ solvent extraction process.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 1995

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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