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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 36 No. 5, p. 1346-1356
    Received: Jan 1, 2007

    * Corresponding author(s): sbradford@ussl.ars.usda.gov
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A Stochastic Model for Colloid Transport and Deposition

  1. S. A. Bradford *a and
  2. N. Torideb
  1. a USDA-ARS, United States Salinity Lab., 450 W. Big Springs Rd., Riverside, CA 92507-4617
    b Faculty of Bioresources, Mie Univ., 1577 Kurimamachiya-cho Tsu, Japan, 514-8507


Profiles of retained colloids in porous media have frequently been observed to be hyper-exponential or non-monotonic with transport depth under unfavorable attachment conditions, whereas filtration theory predicts an exponential profile. In this work we present a stochastic model for colloid transport and deposition that allows various hypotheses for such deviations to be tested. The model is based on the conventional advective dispersion equation that accounts for first-order kinetic deposition and release of colloids. One or two stochastic parameters can be considered in this model, including the deposition coefficient, the release coefficient, and the average pore water velocity. In the case of one stochastic parameter, the probability density function (PDF) is characterized using log-normal, bimodal log-normal, or a simple two species/region formulation. When two stochastic parameters are considered, then a joint log-normal PDF is employed. Simulation results indicated that variations in the deposition coefficient and the average pore water velocity can both produce hyper-exponential deposition profiles. Bimodal formulations for the PDF were also able to produce hyper-exponential profiles, but with much lower variances in the deposition coefficient. The shape of the deposition profile was found to be very sensitive to the correlation of deposition and release coefficients, and to the correlation of pore water velocity and deposition coefficient. Application of the developed stochastic model to a particular set of colloid transport and deposition data indicated that chemical heterogeneity of the colloid population could not fully explain the observed behavior. Alternative interpretations were therefore proposed based on variability of the pore size and the water velocity distributions.

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Copyright © 2007. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyAmerican Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America