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Title: Fate of Uranium During Transport Across the Groundwater-Surface Water Interface

Abstract

Discharge of contaminated groundwater to surface waters is of concern at many DOE facilities. For example, at F-Area and TNX-Area on the Savannah River Site, contaminated groundwater, including uranium, is already discharging into natural wetlands. It is at this interface where contaminants come into contact with the biosphere. These this research addressed a critical knowledge gap focusing on the geochemistry of uranium (or for that matter, any redox-active contaminant) in wetland systems. Understanding the interactions between hydrological, microbial, and chemical processes will make it possible to provide a more accurate conceptual and quantitative understanding of radionuclide fate and transport under these unique conditions. Understanding these processes will permit better long-term management and the necessary technical justification for invoking Monitored Natural Attenuation of contaminated wetland areas. Specifically, this research did provide new insights on how plant-induced alterations to the sediment biogeochemical processes affect the key uranium reducing microorganisms, the uranium reduction, its spatial distribution, the speciation of the immobilized uranium, and its long-term stability. This was achieved by conducting laboratory mesocosm wetland experiments as well as field measurements at the SRNL. Results have shown that uranium can be immobilized in wetland systems. To a degree some of the soluble U(VI) wasmore » reduced to insoluble U(IV), but the majority of the immobilized U was incorporated into iron oxyhydroxides that precipitated onto the root surfaces of wetland plants. This U was immobilized mostly as U(VI). Because it was immobilized in its oxidized form, results showed that dry spells, resulting in the lowering of the water table and the exposure of the U to oxic conditions, did not result in U remobilization.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2]
  1. Princeton Univ., NJ (United States)
  2. Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States). Savannah River National Lab. (SRNL)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Princeton Univ., NJ (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
OSTI Identifier:
1367535
Report Number(s):
DOE-Princeton-SC0006847
DOE Contract Number:
SC0006847
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; wetlands; uranium; iron; reduction; stability

Citation Formats

Jaffe, Peter R., and Kaplan, Daniel I. Fate of Uranium During Transport Across the Groundwater-Surface Water Interface. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1367535.
Jaffe, Peter R., & Kaplan, Daniel I. Fate of Uranium During Transport Across the Groundwater-Surface Water Interface. United States. doi:10.2172/1367535.
Jaffe, Peter R., and Kaplan, Daniel I. 2017. "Fate of Uranium During Transport Across the Groundwater-Surface Water Interface". United States. doi:10.2172/1367535. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1367535.
@article{osti_1367535,
title = {Fate of Uranium During Transport Across the Groundwater-Surface Water Interface},
author = {Jaffe, Peter R. and Kaplan, Daniel I.},
abstractNote = {Discharge of contaminated groundwater to surface waters is of concern at many DOE facilities. For example, at F-Area and TNX-Area on the Savannah River Site, contaminated groundwater, including uranium, is already discharging into natural wetlands. It is at this interface where contaminants come into contact with the biosphere. These this research addressed a critical knowledge gap focusing on the geochemistry of uranium (or for that matter, any redox-active contaminant) in wetland systems. Understanding the interactions between hydrological, microbial, and chemical processes will make it possible to provide a more accurate conceptual and quantitative understanding of radionuclide fate and transport under these unique conditions. Understanding these processes will permit better long-term management and the necessary technical justification for invoking Monitored Natural Attenuation of contaminated wetland areas. Specifically, this research did provide new insights on how plant-induced alterations to the sediment biogeochemical processes affect the key uranium reducing microorganisms, the uranium reduction, its spatial distribution, the speciation of the immobilized uranium, and its long-term stability. This was achieved by conducting laboratory mesocosm wetland experiments as well as field measurements at the SRNL. Results have shown that uranium can be immobilized in wetland systems. To a degree some of the soluble U(VI) was reduced to insoluble U(IV), but the majority of the immobilized U was incorporated into iron oxyhydroxides that precipitated onto the root surfaces of wetland plants. This U was immobilized mostly as U(VI). Because it was immobilized in its oxidized form, results showed that dry spells, resulting in the lowering of the water table and the exposure of the U to oxic conditions, did not result in U remobilization.},
doi = {10.2172/1367535},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2017,
month = 6
}

Technical Report:

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