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Title: Temperature dependency of virus and nanoparticle transport and retention in saturated porous media

item SASIDHARAN, SALINI - Commonwealth Scientific And Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)
item TORKZABAN, SAEED - Commonwealth Scientific And Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)
item Bradford, Scott
item COOK, PETER - Flinders University
item VADAKATTU, GUPTA - Commonwealth Scientific And Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)

Submitted to: Journal of Contaminant Hydrology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/27/2016
Publication Date: 12/5/2016
Citation: Sasidharan, S., Torkzaban, S., Bradford, S.A., Cook, P., Vadakattu, G.V. 2016. Temperature dependency of virus and nanoparticle transport and retention in saturated porous media. Journal of Contaminant Hydrology. 196:10-20. doi: 10.1016/j.jconhyd.2016.11.004.

Interpretive Summary: Variations in the temperature of groundwater can occur as a result of seasonal changes, and mixing with surface water supplies (recharge and injection wells). However, the effect of temperature on virus and nanoparticle (NP) transport has received little research attention. Experimental studies and theoretical calculations were performed to overcome this gap in knowledge. Results showed that an increase in temperature from 4 °C to 20 °C increased the retention of viruses and NPs in porous media under intermediate ionic strength (IS=10 and 30 mM) conditions, but not when the IS was too low (1 mM) or too high (50 mM). These findings were explained by differences in the energy barrier height with IS, and a small reduction in the energy barrier with increasing temperature. This information will be of interest to scientists and engineers concerned with predicting the risks of virus and NP transport in the environment.

Technical Abstract: The influence of temperature (4 and 20 °C) on virus and nanoparticle attachment in columns packed with quartz sand was studied under various physiochemical conditions. Fitted values of the attachment rate coefficient (katt) and the solid fraction that contributed to attachment (Sf) were found to be strong functions of the physicochemical conditions and the temperature. In particular, when the ionic strengthen (IS) equaled 10 and 30 mM an increase in the temperature from 4 to 20°C produced an increase of up to 97% in katt and 160-715% in Sf. Conversely, temperature did not have a significant influence on fitted katt and Sf values when the IS equaled 1 mM or 50 mM. An explanation for these observations was obtained from filtration theory and extended interaction energy calculations. Filtration theory only predicted an increase in the single-collector efficiency (') of up to 37 % when the temperature increases from 4 to 20 °C, and this suggests that an increase in the sticking efficiency (a) also occurred with temperature. Interaction energy calculations demonstrated that the energy barrier to attachment in the primary minimum ('Fa) decreased with increasing IS, chemical heterogeneity, and temperature, especially in the presence of small amounts of nanoscale roughness. Temperature had a negligible effect on katt and Sf when the IS =1 mM because of the large energy barrier, and at IS=50 mM because of the absence of an energy barrier. Conversely, temperature had a large influence on katt and Sf when the IS was 10 and 30 mM because of the presence of a small 'Fa on sand with nanoscale roughness and a chemical (positive zeta potential) heterogeneity. This has large implications for setting parameters for the accurate modeling and transport prediction of contaminants in ground water systems.