(544a) Emission of Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons from Contaminated Sediments

Authors: 
Wang, L. - Presenter, University of Cincinnati
Govind, R. - Presenter, University of Cincinnati


Contaminated sediments contain a variety of volatile and semi-volatile hydrocarbons, which are released into the air, when these sediments are stored in confined disposal facilities (CDFs). Polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are one class of sediment contaminants that of great interest, since they are carcinogenic and pose a significant health hazard. Hence quantitative data and models are needed to predict the volatile emissions from CDFs and evaluate control strategies to manage contaminated sediments.

Previous investigations conducted at the U.S. Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station (WES) with New Bedford Harbor sediment showed high VOC emissions when the material was disturbed and exposed to air. Until recently, flux data obtained from field sediments have not been available to develop models to accurately predict emissions under various environmental conditions, such as moisture content, sediment characteristics and temperature. Sediment physical characteristics, such as aging, porosity and percent oil and grease can significantly impact the volatile emissions.

In this paper, experimental data on air emissions will be presented for two contaminated sediments and a mathematical model that incorporates sediment characteristics will be presented. Experimental data obtained by other researchers will also be analyzed using our models and the effectiveness of the model to quantify air emissions from contaminated sediments will be presented.

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