Analysis of the vapor in passive vapor samplers retrieved from a streambed in fractured rock terrain implied that volatile organic carbon (VOC) discharge from ground water to surface water substantially increased following installation of a contaminant recovery well using air rotary drilling. The air rotary technique forced air into the aquifer near the stream. The injection produced an upward hydraulic gradient that appears to have transported water and contaminants from deeper parts of the aquifer through fractures into shallow parts of the aquifer. Once in the shallow flow regime, the contamination was transported to the stream, where it discharged during the next several weeks following well installation. After the recovery well was activated and began continuously pumping contaminated ground water to a treatment facility, the VOC concentrations in the stream bottom passive vapor samplers decreased to below detectable concentrations, suggesting that the withdrawal had captured the contaminated ground water that previously had discharged to the stream.
Additional publication details
Temporal changes in VOC discharge to surface water from a fractured rock aquifer during well installation and operation, Greenville, South Carolina