Emmanuel Dumont

MsCE Candidate, University of New Brunswick, Department of Civil Engineering
Hometown: Paris, France

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Joint master in management and environmental engineering.
Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Saint Etienne (ENSMSE), France


Supervisor: Kerry MacQuarrie
Started: September 2005

Multicomponent reactive transport modeling of ammonium concentration and isotope pattern in a manure lagoon plume

The contamination of water resources by ammonium constitutes a crucial problem for drinking water supplies and river ecosystems in many areas. Hence it becomes very important to develop tools which allow a precise localization of the sources of pollution, and an accurate estimation of the evolution of the contaminated plume. The incorporation of isotopic tracers to groundwater numerical simulations combines these two aspects.

The main objective of this research project is to develop a numerical modelling approach to simulate the isotope fractionation accompanying cation exchange, and to apply it to an agricultural anoxic ammonium plume emanating from an earthen manure storage in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. It will contribute to the literature by being the first study to model the isotope fractionation of ammonium during cation exchange. Besides, the influence of the selectivity coefficients sequence on the retardation of the ammonium plume and the isotopic fractionation will also be investigated. 

This study will explore further the use of 15N signatures as good fingerprints of liquid manure source waste. If it can be assessed that there is no significant fractionation accompanying cation exchange, 15N signatures can be used directly to identify the source waste of a given nitrogen plume. On the contrary, a modelling approach will be necessary if cation exchange modifies significantly the isotopic ratios.