Navigation Links
Helping the NRC look below the surface
Date:4/23/2010

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists are helping U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) experts model the movement of radioactive materials in the soil. Their findings can be used to fine-tune the risk assessment studies that are an essential component in the development of commercial nuclear facilities.

Soil scientists Yakov Pachepsky, Timothy Gish and Andrey Guber all work in the ARS Animal and Natural Resources Institute in Beltsville, Md. The team set up their study at the Optimizing Production Inputs for Economic and Environmental Enhancement (OPE3) study area in Beltsville, which was established in 1998 to study major environmental and economic issues facing U.S. agriculture. It is equipped with remote sensing gear and other instrumentation for monitoring weather, soil, plants and groundwater.

The researchers studied how contaminants move through the vadose zone, which is the area between the soil surface and the groundwater zone. Over a 2-year period, the team added several nontoxic chemical tracers to irrigation water and used 12 site wells to monitor levels of those tracers at three different depths in the soil. Surface runoff, soil moisture profiles, soil water potential, groundwater levels and weather variables were also monitored.

The researchers compared the field data they collected on water flow and tracer concentrations with results from model simulations. Then they ran a range of chemical transport models that varied in complexity to learn more about conditions that could significantly affect the movement of water--and contaminants--below the soil surface.

Among other findings, the team concluded that tracer transport in soils and shallow groundwater could be strongly affected by gaps in the vadose zone's restrictive fine-material layers.

This and other findings from this work can be used to estimate pollutant transport scenarios for risk assessment studies of nuclear facilities. The results were published in a report by the NRC in 2009.


'/>"/>

Contact: Ann Perry
ann.perry@ars.usda.gov
301-504-1628
United States Department of Agriculture-Research, Education, and Economics
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Conference to examine role technology can play in helping US manage healthcare costs
2. A helping hand from the grandparents
3. Helping back pain sufferers to stay in work
4. Giving nature a helping hand
5. Researcher helping to pioneer medical therapy for Fragile X Syndrome presents latest findings
6. Satellites helping aid workers in Honduras
7. Green IT not helping climate change
8. Energy experts helping Australian households reduce carbon emissions
9. Tennessee foresters helping to return chestnuts to American forests
10. Texas AgriLife researchers helping
11. New insights into helping marine species cope with climate change
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/15/2016)... , April 15, 2016 ... the,  "Global Gait Biometrics Market 2016-2020,"  report to ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ) , ,The global gait biometrics ... of 13.98% during the period 2016-2020. ... angles, which can be used to compute factors ...
(Date:4/13/2016)... , April 13, 2016  IMPOWER physicians supporting Medicaid ... setting a new clinical standard in telehealth thanks to ... leveraging the higi platform, IMPOWER patients can routinely track ... and body mass index, and, when they opt in, ... convenient visit to a local retail location at no ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... , March 31, 2016  Genomics firm Nabsys ... founding CEO, Barrett Bready , M.D., who returned ... of the original technical leadership team, including Chief Technology ... of Product Development, Steve Nurnberg and Vice President of ... to the company. Dr. Bready served as ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech ... the funding of a Sponsored Research Agreement with ... tumor cells (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding ... CTC levels correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer ... data will then be employed to support the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers and fluorometers use the ... models are higher end machines that use the more unconventional z-dimension of 20mm. ... the bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has developed several Agilent flow ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Mass. , June 23, 2016   ... development of novel compounds designed to target cancer ... napabucasin, has been granted Orphan Drug Designation from ... the treatment of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal junction ... stemness inhibitor designed to inhibit cancer stemness pathways ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. is ... has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI approval ... Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate methods ...
Breaking Biology Technology: