This special program allows to remediate the contamination by ammonium perchlorate (AMM-PCHL) thanks to the application of ethanol.
The program is not aimed at producing new energy for the facility, so it should be used only to remediate pollution by AMM-PCHL. The proposed solution is similar to others, however the final outcome is better than expected in most occasions.
According to the most relevant field study (from Nzengung, Das and Kastner – University of Georgia) it is possible to achieve an almost complete natural remediation of AMM-PERCH in matter of a few months.
This kind of approach is particularly useful when dealing with a serious risk of groundwater contamination. Due to the quite fast timing of action, it may be considered as a sort of “emergency measure” in such cases.
The method envisages the application of ethanol, directly on-site without the need to remove the polluted land neither to treat it in a different place. This represent a huge advantage for both timing and ease of application.
This method is very simple and easy to implement, which makes it the first choice when it is necessary to deal with pollution by AMM-PERCH very fast.
First of all, ethanol is needed. No pretreatments are required, however the contaminated site has to be very wet, for making ethanol more able to work at different depths.
So, ethanol and water have to be provided. In addition, it would be better to delimitate the affected area by installing plastic liners along the perimeter. This allows to avoid a liquid loss during the treatment.
The targeted soil has to be tilled up to 12 inches (30 cm).
The water has to be added in order to saturate the soil down to 12 and 24 inches (30 – 60 cm).
Finally, it is suggested to cover the area while ethanol and water are working to remediate the AMM-PERCH.
For what concerns the starting contamination level, it may vary from 36.000 up to 145.000 µg/kg (0-2 feet depth / 0 – 60 cm).
The final result is very good, because it may reach 100% AMM-PERCH removal in 100 days, even if a new re-contamination peak (approx. 30% of the initial level) can occur after 15 days. However, this peak disappear after 200 days, and a non detectable level of AMM-PERCH is expected for top and medium soil layers after 300 days.
For what concerns the bottom layer os the soil, an almost complete removal occurs (99.7%). Depending on the saturation level of the ground, it may be possible to push this level up to 100%.
Chicken manure (with water) has shown to be very effective, and the same is valid for horse manure. So, they may be considered when ethanol is not available for some reasons.
However, ethanol is a more reliable solution, which guarantees long-lasting results and a very effective recovery of the affected area.
This method should be immediately applied in very many military sites and, even more, in weapons manufacturing facilities.
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