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Borehole Radar Imaging of Injected Permeable Reactive-Iron Wall at Cape Cod Research Site

As part of OGW BG geophysical monitoring research through the USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program, a pilot-scale study was conducted on the Massachusetts Military Reservation, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, to assess the use of a hydraulic-fracturing method to create vertical permeable walls of zero-valent iron to remediate groundwater contaminated with chlorinated solvents at depths exceeding the range of conventional iron-wall installation methods. The USGS used a cross-hole, common-depth radar scanning method to test the continuity and estimate the lateral and vertical extent of the two reactive-iron walls.

The cross-hole radar surveys were conducted in boreholes on opposite sides of the iron injection zones. Radar field data were compared to results of two-dimensional, finite-difference, time-domain models and laboratory-scale physical models developed to predict the effects of wall edges and discontinuities on common-depth cross-hole radar measurements. As part of a feasibility study, single-hole radar reflection data was used successfully to image the walls.

View the online photo gallery from this project.


Joesten, P.K., 2004, The Use of Borehole Radar Methods to Monitor the Pilot Installation of a Zero-Valent Iron Filings Permeable Reactive Barrier at the Massachusetts Military Reservation, Cape Cod, Massachusetts: Storrs, Connecticut, University of Connecticut, unpublished Master's thesis, 80 p.

Joesten, P.K., Lane, J.W., Jr., Savoie, J.G., and Versteeg, R.J., 2001, Application of borehole-radar methods to image two permeable reactive-iron walls at the Massachusetts Millitary Reservation, Cape Cod, Massachusetts: in Symposium on the Application of Geophysics to Engineering and Environmental Problems, Denver, Colorado, March 4-7, 2001, Proceedings: Wheat Ridge, Colo., Environmental and Engineering Geophysical Society, CD-ROM.

Lane, John W., Jr., Joesten, Peter K., and Savoie, Jennifer G., 2001, Cross-Hole Radar Scanning of Two Vertical, Permeable, Reactive-Iron Walls at the Massachusetts Military Reservation, Cape Cod, Massachusetts: US Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 00-4145.

Lane, John W., Jr., Joesten, Peter J., and Savoie, Jennifer, 1999, Monitoring a permeable reactive iron wall installation in unconsolidated sediments by using a cross-hole radar method, in Morganwalp, D.W. and Buxton, H.T., eds., U.S. Geological Survey Toxic Substances Hydrology Program -- Proceedings of the Technical Meeting, Charleston, South Carolina, March 8-12, 1999: USGS Water-Resources Investigations Report 99-4018C, v. 3, p. 747-756.

Savoie, J.G., Lane, J.W., Jr., and Joesten, P.K., 2001, Cross-hole radar method monitors PRB installation: Ground Water Currents, Issue No. 42, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency EPA 542-N-01-008, p. 3-4.

Support & Collaboration

This research was conducted by through the USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program by John W. Lane, Jr. (USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics), Peter Joesten (USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics), Jennifer G. Savoie (USGS Water Resources Discipline -- MA) and Roelof J. Versteeg (Columbia University) with assistance from OGW BG staff.

For more information:

For more information on this project, please contact John W. Lane, Jr. (Chief, USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics), or call the Branch of Geophysics at (860)487-7402.

For more information about USGS Toxics Substances Hydrology Program research on Cape Cod, see the Cape Cod Toxic Substances Hydrology Research Site web site. [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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