Method for characterizing the sorbed cation distribution on natural zeolite materials
Johnson, Erin Elizabeth Ross
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A series of batch, solids characterization, and column experiments were performed on two varieties of naturally occurring zeolite materials to determine an effective method for characterizing the sorbed cation distribution on natural zeolite materials. The goal of this research was to determine which zeolite material would be appropriate for placement in a Permeable Treatment Wall (PTW) that will be installed at the West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP), a site which has experienced widespread radioactive contamination of strontium-90. In addition, these experiments were performed to test the ability of the zeolites to remove strontium from a synthetic groundwater that was created to replicate the groundwater found on site at West Valley. The results of these experiments provide a method to measure the cation exchange capacity of a zeolite material. Further implications of this research are providing a decision for the zeolite material that would be best suited for the PTW at West Valley as well as determining the life span of the installed treatment wall through the use of modeling.