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Title: Scale-Dependent Rates of Uranyl Surface Complexation Reaction in Sediments

Abstract

Scale-dependency of uranyl[U(VI)] surface complexation rates was investigated in stirred flow-cell and column systems using a U(VI)-contaminated sediment from the US Department of Energy, Hanford site, WA. The experimental results were used to estimate the apparent rate of U(VI) surface complexation at the grain-scale and in porous media. Numerical simulations using molecular, pore-scale, and continuum models were performed to provide insights into and to estimate the rate constants of U(VI) surface complexation at the different scales. The results showed that the grain-scale rate constant of U(VI) surface complexation was over 3 to 10 orders of magnitude smaller, dependent on the temporal scale, than the rate constant calculated using the molecular simulations. The grain-scale rate was faster initially and slower with time, showing the temporal scale-dependency. The largest rate constant at the grain-scale decreased additional 2 orders of magnitude when the rate was scaled to the porous media in the column. The scaling effect from the grain-scale to the porous media became less important for the slower sorption sites. Pore-scale simulations revealed the importance of coupled mass transport and reactions in both intragranular and inter-granular domains, which caused both spatial and temporal dependence of U(VI) surface complexation rates in the sediment.more » Pore-scale simulations also revealed a new rate-limiting mechanism in the intragranular porous domains that the rate of coupled diffusion and surface complexation reaction was slower than either process alone. The results provided important implications for developing models to scale geochemical/biogeochemical reactions.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1073565
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-75094
KP1702030
DOE Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 105:326-341
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
uranium, desorption, kinetics, scaling, pore-scale, simulation

Citation Formats

Liu, Chongxuan, Shang, Jianying, Kerisit, Sebastien N., Zachara, John M., and Zhu, Weihuang. Scale-Dependent Rates of Uranyl Surface Complexation Reaction in Sediments. United States: N. p., 2013. Web. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2012.12.003.
Liu, Chongxuan, Shang, Jianying, Kerisit, Sebastien N., Zachara, John M., & Zhu, Weihuang. Scale-Dependent Rates of Uranyl Surface Complexation Reaction in Sediments. United States. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2012.12.003.
Liu, Chongxuan, Shang, Jianying, Kerisit, Sebastien N., Zachara, John M., and Zhu, Weihuang. 2013. "Scale-Dependent Rates of Uranyl Surface Complexation Reaction in Sediments". United States. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2012.12.003.
@article{osti_1073565,
title = {Scale-Dependent Rates of Uranyl Surface Complexation Reaction in Sediments},
author = {Liu, Chongxuan and Shang, Jianying and Kerisit, Sebastien N. and Zachara, John M. and Zhu, Weihuang},
abstractNote = {Scale-dependency of uranyl[U(VI)] surface complexation rates was investigated in stirred flow-cell and column systems using a U(VI)-contaminated sediment from the US Department of Energy, Hanford site, WA. The experimental results were used to estimate the apparent rate of U(VI) surface complexation at the grain-scale and in porous media. Numerical simulations using molecular, pore-scale, and continuum models were performed to provide insights into and to estimate the rate constants of U(VI) surface complexation at the different scales. The results showed that the grain-scale rate constant of U(VI) surface complexation was over 3 to 10 orders of magnitude smaller, dependent on the temporal scale, than the rate constant calculated using the molecular simulations. The grain-scale rate was faster initially and slower with time, showing the temporal scale-dependency. The largest rate constant at the grain-scale decreased additional 2 orders of magnitude when the rate was scaled to the porous media in the column. The scaling effect from the grain-scale to the porous media became less important for the slower sorption sites. Pore-scale simulations revealed the importance of coupled mass transport and reactions in both intragranular and inter-granular domains, which caused both spatial and temporal dependence of U(VI) surface complexation rates in the sediment. Pore-scale simulations also revealed a new rate-limiting mechanism in the intragranular porous domains that the rate of coupled diffusion and surface complexation reaction was slower than either process alone. The results provided important implications for developing models to scale geochemical/biogeochemical reactions.},
doi = {10.1016/j.gca.2012.12.003},
journal = {Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 105:326-341},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2013,
month = 3
}
  • The additivity model assumed that field-scale reaction properties in a sediment including surface area, reactive site concentration, and reaction rate can be predicted from field-scale grain-size distribution by linearly adding reaction properties estimated in laboratory for individual grain-size fractions. This study evaluated the additivity model in scaling mass transfer-limited, multi-rate uranyl (U(VI)) surface complexation reactions in a contaminated sediment. Experimental data of rate-limited U(VI) desorption in a stirred flow-cell reactor were used to estimate the statistical properties of the rate constants for individual grain-size fractions, which were then used to predict rate-limited U(VI) desorption in the composite sediment. The resultmore » indicated that the additivity model with respect to the rate of U(VI) desorption provided a good prediction of U(VI) desorption in the composite sediment. However, the rate constants were not directly scalable using the additivity model. An approximate additivity model for directly scaling rate constants was subsequently proposed and evaluated. The result found that the approximate model provided a good prediction of the experimental results within statistical uncertainty. This study also found that a gravel-size fraction (2 to 8 mm), which is often ignored in modeling U(VI) sorption and desorption, is statistically significant to the U(VI) desorption in the sediment.« less
  • This study statistically analyzed a grain-size based additivity model that has been proposed to scale reaction rates and parameters from laboratory to field. The additivity model assumed that reaction properties in a sediment including surface area, reactive site concentration, reaction rate, and extent can be predicted from field-scale grain size distribution by linearly adding reaction properties for individual grain size fractions. This study focused on the statistical analysis of the additivity model with respect to reaction rate constants using multi-rate uranyl (U(VI)) surface complexation reactions in a contaminated sediment as an example. Experimental data of rate-limited U(VI) desorption in amore » stirred flow-cell reactor were used to estimate the statistical properties of multi-rate parameters for individual grain size fractions. The statistical properties of the rate constants for the individual grain size fractions were then used to analyze the statistical properties of the additivity model to predict rate-limited U(VI) desorption in the composite sediment, and to evaluate the relative importance of individual grain size fractions to the overall U(VI) desorption. The result indicated that the additivity model provided a good prediction of the U(VI) desorption in the composite sediment. However, the rate constants were not directly scalable using the additivity model, and U(VI) desorption in individual grain size fractions have to be simulated in order to apply the additivity model. An approximate additivity model for directly scaling rate constants was subsequently proposed and evaluated. The result found that the approximate model provided a good prediction of the experimental results within statistical uncertainty. This study also found that a gravel size fraction (2-8mm), which is often ignored in modeling U(VI) sorption and desorption, is statistically significant to the U(VI) desorption in the sediment.« less
  • No abstract prepared.