Physical (e.g. flow and transport), chemical (e.g. red-ox reactions) and biological (e.g. bio-mineralization) processes play a critical role in controlling reactive transport of contaminants in soils, the vadose zone, and deeper subsurface permeable media, for example during (bio)remediation operations. The characterization and modeling at different scales of such coupled processes in subsurface environments has motivated the development of novel experimental approaches, from laboratory to field, that are capable of quantifying the physical, chemical and biological properties of heterogeneous structures and of the related physical processes at different scales. Detailed experimental investigation and evidence of complex subsurface processes allow testing and validating new measurement techniques, and provide datasets with sufficient resolution and/or high spatial coverage to make the validation of coupled processes theories and numerical models possible.
The session will provide the opportunity for a multidisciplinary discussion based on recent advances in the experimental characterization and modeling of single and multiphase flows (including flows of non-Newtonian fluids), as well as conservative and reactive solute transport and bacterial activity, in porous and fractured media. Examples of such coupled subsurface processes include the dynamics of single and multiphase flows, NAPL dissolution and transport, mixing and mixing-controlled reactions, heat transfer, contaminant (bio)degradation, precipitation/dissolution reactions, bacterial dynamics and biofilm growth. Experiments featuring high resolution measurements with novel sensors, analytical, and imaging techniques, as well as novel modeling and upscaling techniques, will be addressed prominently.
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