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Isotopic reactive transport: Towards improved quantitative models for the fate of carbon and metals in near surface environments

Speaker: Jennifer Druhan, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Series: EEWR Brown Bag Seminars
Location: Engineering Quad E225
Date/Time: Friday, February 8, 2019, 12:00:00 p.m. - 01:00:00 p.m.


Jennifer DruhanWater is a basic necessity for life, and exerts a primary control on virtually all  geological, chemical and biological processes occurring at or near the Earth’s  surface. Because these water-rock-life interactions take place at interfaces, both fluid composition and the physical and chemical structure of porous media must be treated as coevolving phenomena. Such complex and interrelated processes can hinder both interpretation and prediction of key environmental processes. One avenue of addressing this complexity is the use of multicomponent numerical methods that combine the governing equations of flow, transport and reactivity. In this presentation I will demonstrate the construction and application of multi- component reactive transport models to address key hydrogeochemical problems, with an emphasis on the balance between simulations of complex reactivity versus  highly heterogeneous hydrologic conditions. Examples include stable isotope  fractionations during contaminant cycling and interpretation of flux-weighted  measurements. The goal is to demonstrate how simulations can be used to  interrogate complex field data and thus provide new insights into the processes governing hydrogeochemical systems.