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Title: Status of SRNL radiological field lysimeter experiment-Year 1

The Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) Radiological Field Lysimeter Experiment is a one-of-a-kind field facility designed to study radionuclide geochemical processes at a larger spatial scale (from grams to tens of kilograms sediment) and temporal scale (from months to 10 years) than is readily afforded through laboratory studies. The lysimeter facility is intended to capture the natural heterogeneity of moisture and temperature regimes in the vadose zone, the unsaturated subsurface region between the surface soil and the underlying aquifer. The 48 lysimeter columns, which contain various radionuclides (and stable iodine), were opened to rainfall infiltration on July 5, 2012. The objective of this report is to provide a status of the lysimeter facility operations and to compile data collected during FY13, including leachate volume, rainfall, and soil moisture and temperature in situ probe data. Radiological leachate data are not presented in this document but will be the subject of a separate document.1 Leachate samples were collected quarterly and shipped to Clemson University for radiological analyses. Rainfall, leachate volume, moisture and temperature probe data were collected continuously. During operations of the facility this year, there were four safety or technical concerns that required additional maintenance: 1) radioactivity was detected in onemore » of the overflow bottles (captured water collected from the secondary containment that does not come in contact with the radiological source material); 2) rainwater accumulated within the sample-bottle storage sheds; 3) overflow containers collected more liquid than anticipated; and 4) significant spider infestation occurred in the sample-bottle storage sheds. To address the first three concerns, each of the lysimeter columns was re-plumbed to improve and to minimize the number of joint unions. To address the fourth concern regarding spiders, new sample-bottle water sheds were purchased and a pest control program was established. During this retrofit, the lysimeters were temporarily capped (covered to preclude additional water from entering lysimeter columns) for about two months (except the four Tc-cementitious containing lysimeters, which remain capped). At a later date, data summarized in this report will be combined with the leachate radionuclide concentration data that are presently being analyzed. Together, these data can be numerically modeled to provide bench-marking information, to test hypotheses regarding hydrogeochemical conceptual models, and to estimate effective transport parameters under field conditions.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States). Savannah River National Lab. (SRNL)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1169577
Report Number(s):
SRNL-STI--2013-00446
DOE Contract Number:
AC09-08SR22470
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY