A New High-Resolution Method for the Characterization of Heterogeneous Subsurface Environments: Providing Flow and Transport Parameters via the Integration of MultiScale HydroGeophysical Data
Historically, remediation efforts at DOE contaminated sites have relied on numerical models to integrate laboratory and field characterization data, predict the fate and transport behavior of contaminant plumes, design remediation protocols to mitigate contaminant migration, and analyze data from field remediation results. Of particular concern is the effect of subsurface heterogeneities and their hydrologic and geochemical properties on the flow and transport of contaminants. High performance computations using Â¿leadership class computersÂ¿ are now making it technically feasible to model the complex flow and transport processes occurring over a wider range of scales. However, these models are limited by the lack of fine-scale site-characterization data for use as realistic inputs and constraints in these detailed models. In order to improve the hydrophysical characterization of the subsurface, and populate high-performance simulations with critical physicallyderived parameters, this project will use a high-resolution multiphysics scanner technology to characterize coupled hydrogeologic and geophysical properties of complex subsurface lithologies and structures. With the scanner data as input, software tools and physical models will be developed to enable the DOE to integrate multiscale hydrogeophysics data and reduce uncertainty in the prediction of contaminant transport on a site-by-site basis. Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: A new, improved, and marketable site-characterization method should lead to more efficient monitoring and verification activities, resulting in large cost savings over the life of remediation programs. In addition, the technology should directly benefit DOE's investment in massively parallel flow and model development. Lastly, the technology should be of use to the oil and gas industry.
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New England Research, Inc.
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