Enhanced Removal of Separate Phase Viscous Fuel by Electrical Resistance Heating and multi phase Extraction

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Courtesy of TRS Group, Inc.

Abstract

A floating hydrocarbon plume at a manufacturing facility in Georgia was remediated using electrical resistance heating (ERH) and multi-phase extraction. The hydrocarbon was a specialty fuel similar to kerosene or diesel fuel. Initially, hydrocarbon covered an area of 4900 ft2 (500 m2) and was up to l0 ft (3 m) thick, with most wells containing 1-3 ft (0.5-1 m) of hydrocarbon. Most of the floating hydrocarbon was beneath the manufacturing building. The soil from the floor to a depth of about 50 ft (15 m) is composed of sandy clay saprolite with moderately low permeability and high heterogeneity. The static water table is about 24 ft (7 m) below grade. Remediation began on 27 May 1999. Remediation to less than 1/8-inch (4 mm) hydrocarbon was completed on 10 December 1999. The ERH system relied on several mechanisms to remove hydrocarbon: 1) heating to reduce hydrocarbon viscosity, 2) hydrocarbon floatation/agitation by rising steam bubbles, 3) thermally enhanced vaporization (fuel boiling), and 4) vacuum-enhanced pumping.

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