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Competitive sorption of organic contaminants in chalk

Competitive sorption of organic contaminants in chalk

Journal of Contaminant Hydrology 67(1-4): 159-175

In the Negev desert, Israel, a chemical industrial complex is located over fractured Eocene chalk formations where transfer of water and solutes between fracture voids and matrix pores affects migration of contaminants in the fractures due to diffusion into the chalk matrix. This study tests sorption and sorption competition between contaminants in the chalk matrix to make it possible to evaluate the potential for contaminant attenuation during transport in fractures. Single solute sorption isotherms on chalk matrix material for five common contaminants (m-xylene, ametryn, 1,2-dichloroethane, phenanthrene, and 2,4,6-tribromophenol) were found to be nonlinear, as confirmed in plots of Kd versus initial solution concentration. Over the studied concentration ranges, m-xylene Kd varied by more than a factor of 100, ametryn Kd by a factor of 4, 1,2-dichloroethane Kd by more than a factor of 3, phenanthrene Kd by about a factor of 2, and 2,4,6-tribromophenol Kd by a factor of 10. It was earlier found that sorption is to the organic matter component of the chalk matrix and not to the mineral phases (Chemosphere 44 (2001) 1121). Nonlinear sorption isotherms indicate that there is at least some finite sorption domain. Bi-solute competition experiments with 2,4,6-tribromophenol as the competitor were designed to explore the nature of the finite sorption domain. All of the isotherms in the bi-solute experiments are more linear than in the single solute experiments, as confirmed by smaller variations in Kd as a function of initial solution concentration. For both m-xylene and ametryn, there is a small nonlinear component or domain that was apparently not susceptible to competition by 2,4,6-tribromophenol. The nonlinear sorption domain(s) is best expressed at low solution concentrations. Inert-solvent-normalized single and bi-solute sorption isotherms demonstrate that ametryn undergoes specific force interactions with the chalk sorbent. The volume percent of phenanthrene sorbed at the liquid solubility limit is calculated to be 13% v:v in both the single and bi-solute experiments. This value exceeds what may be reasonably interpreted as partitioning of phenanthrene into organic matter, despite the relative linearity of the phenanthrene sorption isotherm (compared with other compounds) in both single and bi-solute systems.

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Accession: 004084158

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 14607475

DOI: 10.1016/s0169-7722(03)00072-x

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