U.S. EPA Contaminated Site Cleanup Information (CLU-IN)

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U.S. EPA Technology Innovation and Field Services Division

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U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Environmental Management (DOE-EM), 2019

DOE-EM has launched an innovative process using silver chloride, a conventional industrial product, to clean up contaminated groundwater at the Savannah River Site (SRS). The goal is to immobilize the contaminant iodine-129 indefinitely underground near its original source. Silver chloride can capture and lock into place a high percentage of the iodine nuclides, reducing the amount of contamination in groundwater within the treatment zone. The material is milled to create ultra-fine particles with highly irregular edges, which greatly increases the surface area of the particles. The silver chloride (165 gal) was mixed with water (240,000 gal) and injected into the water table 30-60 ft bgs. SRS scientists and geologists have found that over a short time period silver chloride can bind permanently with dissolved iodine-129, becoming silver iodide, an immobile solid.

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