Reactive Gas Transport in the Unsaturated Zone

July 8, 2004, 4:00 p.m. (CEST)

Time: 7/8/04, 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Lecturer: Prof. Philip Binning, Environment & ResourcesTechnical University of Denmark
Venue: Pfaffenwaldring 61, Raum U1.003 (MML), Universität Stuttgart
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Pyrite oxidation in unsaturated mine waste rock dumps and acid sulphate soilsis limited by the supply of oxygen from the atmosphere. Oxygen transport throughthe subsurface has long been considered to be driven by diffusion and modelshave generally been based on such an assumption. However, oxygen comprises23.2% by mass of dry air and when oxygen is consumed at depth in the unsaturatedzone a pressure gradient is created between the reactive zone and the groundsurface causing a substantial advective air flow into the subsurface. Todetermine the balance between advective and diffusive transport, aone-dimensional unsaturated zone gas transport model is developed. The twocomponent mass balance model includes advection, diffusion and dispersion inoxygen and nitrogen gas.
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