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A field investigation on transport of carbon-supported nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) in groundwater

: Busch, Jan; Meißner, Tobias; Potthoff, Annegret; Bleyl, Steffen; Georgi, Anett; Mackenzie, Katrin; Trabitzsch, Ralf; Werban, Ulrike; Oswald, Sascha


Journal of contaminant hydrology 181 (2015), pp.59-68
ISSN: 0169-7722
ISSN: 1873-6009
Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung BMBF
03X0082; Fe-NANOSIT
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IKTS ()
carbon colloid; Fe-C composite; field aquifer; nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI); particle mobility; remediation

The application of nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) for subsurface remediation of groundwater contaminants is a promising new technology, which can be understood as alternative to the permeable reactive barrier technique using granular iron. Dechlorination of organic contaminants by zero-valent iron seems promising. Currently, one limitation to widespread deployment is the fast agglomeration and sedimentation of nZVI in colloidal suspensions, even more so when in soils and sediments, which limits the applicability for the treatment of sources and plumes of contamination. Colloid-supported nZVI shows promising characteristics to overcome these limitations. Mobility of Carbo-Iron Colloids (CIC) - a newly developed composite material based on finely ground activated carbon as a carrier for nZVI - was tested in a field application: In this study, a horizontal dipole flow field was established between two wells separated by 5.3. min a confined, natural aquifer. The injection/extraction rate was 500. L/h. Approximately 1.2. kg of CIC was suspended with the polyanionic stabilizer carboxymethyl cellulose. The suspension was introduced into the aquifer at the injection well. Breakthrough of CIC was observed visually and based on total particle and iron concentrations detected in samples from the extraction well. Filtration of water samples revealed a particle breakthrough of about 12% of the amount introduced. This demonstrates high mobility of CIC particles and we suggest that nZVI carried on CIC can be used for contaminant plume remediation by in-situ formation of reactive barriers.