Riverton, Wyoming was host to a former uranium and vanadium ore processing plant, which operated from 1958 to 1963. The milling operations at the site contaminated the surface and shallow groundwater. The area became a Department of Energy (DOE) legacy site, where the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved the DOE’s natural flushing compliance strategy. Up until the flooding in 2010, the natural flushing compliance strategy was going underway as expected. Sampling after the flood revealed a significant increase in contaminant concentration.

New updated models need to be developed to help understand the situation at Riverton, for which this laboratory experiment is conducted. We want to understand the behavior of sulfidic colloids in the groundwater to the presence of metals. At the lab of Stanford’s Green Earth Sciences Building, samples of Riverton groundwater solution and 0.1 M NaCl water solution were place under different parameters. These parameters were: different Ferrihydrite and Sulfur ratios (0.05, 0.1, 0.5, and 2), the duration of agitation (3h, 9h, 24h, 48h, 3d, 5d, 10d, and 14d), and the metals used (Uranium, Zinc, Copper, Nickel, and Molybdenum). The generation of sulfidic colloids is closely monitored throughout the progression of the experiment, which will give insight to their behavior.


Biogeochemistry | Geology


Vincent Noel

Lab site

SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC)

Funding Acknowledgement

The 2019 STEM Teacher and Researcher Program and this project have been made possible through support from Chevron (www.chevron.com), the National Science Foundation through the Robert Noyce Program under Grant #1836335 and 1340110, the California State University Office of the Chancellor, and California Polytechnic State University in partnership with [Your lab site] and [Any other organizations pertinent to your project]. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the funders.



URL: https://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/star/566


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.