Mathematical models have been developed that will accurately predict the long term effectiveness of clay barriers for resisting the dispersion of fluoride contaminated waste. The ultimate objective is to assist practising geotechnical engineers in the design of waste containment systems. The theoretical work for this project is being complemented by an extensive experimental study of the behaviour of fluoride.
Another study has the aim of investigating a novel clean-up strategy for a fluoride polluted aquifer. This involves the development of an interception-sorption trench (a member of the family of remediation strategies collectively known as "reactive walls").
Tim Lewis is developing a multicomponent contaminant transport code with Daichao Sheng and Prof David Smith (at the University of Melbourne). This code is being designed to cope with the complex geochemistry encountered in the sub-surface. Glen Peters, a recent PhD graduate, investigated the theoretical foundations of the advection-dispersion equation and tackled a long standing problem confronting geoenvironmental engineers; namely, how to couple contaminant transport with consolidation of a two phase porous medium.