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DETERMINING HOW VAPOR PHASE MTBE REACHES GROUND WATER
WILSON, JOHN T. DETERMINING HOW VAPOR PHASE MTBE REACHES GROUND WATER. Presented at American Petroleum Institute Conference, Stores, CT, June 15, 2005.
To inform the public.
EPA Region 2 and ORD have funded a RARE project for FY 2005/2006 to evaluate the prospects that MTBE (and other fuel components) in vapors that escape from an underground storage tank (UST) can find its way to ground water produced by monitoring wells at a gasoline filling station. The Ground Water and Ecosystems Restoration Division (GWERD) will carry out a field experiment at a gasoline station in Virginia, where gelled heavy water will be placed under the cover of fittings at USTs that might release vapors. As the gelled heavy water evaporates, it will release vapors of heavy water to the soil gas under the pad but above the water table in the fill around the UST. GWERD will also emplace passive diffusion samplers for MTBE vapors and water vapor under covers of tank infrastructure that might leak vapors. These devices will determine the time weighted average of concentrations of MTBE vapors and heavy water vapors. Then GWERD will sample monitoring wells and determine the concentrations of MTBE by gas chromatography/ mass spectrometry and of heavy water by isotope ratio mass spectrometry. The relative concentrations of deuterium in the vapors above the tank and in water in the well will be used to estimate the contribution of MTBE vapors to MTBE in the ground water.