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The Effect of ZVI on Creating and Maintaining a Reductive Environment Conducive to the Dechlorination of TCE and Its Less-chlorinated Byproducts at a Contaminated Site

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The effect of an anaerobic reductive environment produced by the oxidation of zero valent iron (ZVI) on the microbial reductive dechlorination of trichloroethylene and its applicability to in-situ bioremediation processes was investigated using microcosms and soil column studies. I learned

The effect of an anaerobic reductive environment produced by the oxidation of zero valent iron (ZVI) on the microbial reductive dechlorination of trichloroethylene and its applicability to in-situ bioremediation processes was investigated using microcosms and soil column studies. I learned that microbial dechlorination requires a highly reductive environment, as represented by negative values for oxidation-reduction potential (ORP), which can be maintained through the addition of reducing agents such as ZVI, or to a lesser extent, the fermentation of added substrates such as lactate. Microcosm conditions represented distance from an in-situ treatment injection well and contained different types of iron species and dechlorinating bioaugmentation cultures. Diminishing efficacy of microbial reductive dechlorination along a gradient away from the injection zone was observed, characterized by increasing ORP and decreasing pH. Results also suggested that the use of particular biostimulation substrates is key to prioritizing the dechlorination reaction against competing microbial and abiotic processes by supplying electrons needed for microbial dechlorination.

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2017-12

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Trade-offs in utilizing of zero-valent iron for synergistic biotic and abiotic reduction of trichloroethene and perchlorate in soil and groundwater

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The advantages and challenges of combining zero-valent iron (ZVI) and microbial reduction of trichloroethene (TCE) and perchlorate (ClO4-) in contaminated soil and groundwater are not well understood. The objective of this work was to identify the benefits and limitations of

The advantages and challenges of combining zero-valent iron (ZVI) and microbial reduction of trichloroethene (TCE) and perchlorate (ClO4-) in contaminated soil and groundwater are not well understood. The objective of this work was to identify the benefits and limitations of simultaneous application of ZVI and bioaugmentation for detoxification of TCE and ClO4- using conditions relevant to a specific contaminated site. We studied conditions representing a ZVI-injection zone and a downstream zone influenced Fe (II) produced, for simultaneous ZVI and microbial reductive dechlorination applications using bench scale semi-batch microcosm experiments. 16.5 g L-1 ZVI effectively reduced TCE to ethene and ethane but ClO4- was barely reduced. Microbial reductive dechlorination was limited by both ZVI as well as Fe (II) derived from oxidation of ZVI. In the case of TCE, rapid abiotic TCE reduction made the TCE unavailable for the dechlorinating bacteria. In the case of perchlorate, ZVI inhibited the indigenous perchlorate-reducing bacteria present in the soil and groundwater. Further, H2 generated by ZVI reactions stimulated competing microbial processes like sulfate reduction and methanogenesis. In the microcosms representing the ZVI downstream zone (Fe (II) only), we detected accumulation of cis-dichloroethene (cis-DCE) and vinyl chloride (VC) after 56 days. Some ethene also formed under these conditions. In the absence of ZVI or Fe (II), we detected complete TCE dechlorination to ethene and faster rates of ClO4- reduction. The results illustrate potential limitations of combining ZVI with microbial reduction of chlorinated compounds and show the potential that each technology has when applied separately.

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2017