Department of Environmental Sciences
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Seminar Abstracts
Environmental Sciences Seminar Abstract            

  CONTAMINANT RELEASE AND TRANSPORT IN POROUS MEDIA - A CRITICAL EVALUATION OF PERCOLATION EXPERIMENTS
Markus Wehrer
Institut für Geowissenschaften Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

Laboratory and field scale percolation experiments with soil columns and lysimeters can be valuable tools to assess contaminant release and transport processes in porous media. The large potential of such experiments to reveal transport parameters through inverse simulations is questioned by the complexity and multitude of processes influencing the fate of contaminants. Already simple, small scale, controlled experiments reveal considerable uncertainty with respect to model assisted data interpretation and the ambiguity increases with scale and proximity to natural boundary conditions. This talk will present examples of percolation experiments and the potential and limitations they have for the prediction of contaminant behavior in porous media. It will be discussed what properties of the medium and the contaminant influence the fate of the latter and our ability to predict its behavior in the subsurface environment.


Last updated: 09/27/2012