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Spatial variation of dissolved gas concentrations in a willow vegetation filter treating landfill leachate

Williams, Haydn, Bialowiec, Andrzej, Slater, Frederick Maurice and Randerson, Peter Frederick ORCID: 2010. Spatial variation of dissolved gas concentrations in a willow vegetation filter treating landfill leachate. Ecological Engineering 36 (12) , pp. 1774-1778. 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2010.07.019

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Membrane inlet mass spectrometry (MIMS) was used to monitor continuously and simultaneously the concentrations of dissolved gases (O2, CO2, CH4) within the treatment bed of a willow vegetation filter treating leachate at a landfill site in mid Wales. The distribution of dissolved gasses within the bed was shown to be highly heterogeneous at the small spatial scale with considerable variation between vertical profiles measured simultaneously at different locations. In general, aerobic conditions were observed above the water table with reduced levels of oxygen and increasing levels of carbon dioxide and methane below it. Distinct pockets of oxygen (up to 200 μM) were observed in anaerobic zones and pockets of reduced oxygen and elevated carbon dioxide were observed in the aerobic zone. Pockets of methane were observed in some profiles coexisting with up to 200 μM oxygen at 5 cm depth. These observations confirm the hypothesis that micro-sites exists within the soil/root matrix where aerobic organic matter decomposition and anaerobic processes such as methanogenesis can occur in relatively close proximity to each other. We hypothesise that the distribution of dissolved gases is determined by rapid diffusion of air maintaining aerobic conditions above the water table, removal of oxygen by microbial processes creating anaerobic conditions below the water table and the distribution of willow roots in the soil which create local aerobic zones by oxygen release.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history
Uncontrolled Keywords: landfill leachate; constructed wetlands; mass spectrometry; oxygen; willow
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0925-8574
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2022 08:55

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