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Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory DOE Vadose Zone Science and Technology Roadmap: A National Program of Research and Development.

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Presentation on theme: "Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory DOE Vadose Zone Science and Technology Roadmap: A National Program of Research and Development."— Presentation transcript:

1 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory DOE Vadose Zone Science and Technology Roadmap: A National Program of Research and Development Stephen J. Kowall, Ph.D. April 12, 2001 Program Manager, INEEL Complex-Wide Vadose Zone NGA

2 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory The Vadose Zone in Context Durability Fate and Transport Monitoring Surveillance Information for the Future

3 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory The Ultimate Vadose Zone Challenge: Reducing Uncertainty in Models & Decisions Models must be appropriate for the intended purpose -- not too complex or overly simplistic, and yet pertinent to the problem Models must be based on Continuous Improvements in Science and Data Uncertainty must be addressed Quantifying Uncertainty will Assist in Environmental Decision Making

4 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory CONCEPTUALIZATION & DECISION MAKING PROCESS

5 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory ROADMAPPING DEFINED Strategic Technology Planning Used by Industry and Government to: –Develop a Common Perspective on Possible Future (10-30 years) S&T Needs and –Make Better Research and Development (R&D) Investment Decisions Intended To Serve as Pathways to the Future Identify Capability Gaps in S&T Provide a Structure for Organizing Technology Forecasts Communicate S&T Needs to Users and Research Community

6 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory The Decision-Making Process and the Roadmap

7 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory The Roadmap Team/FY 2000 r The Executive Committee Chair: Dan Stephens, DB Stephens & Assoc. Vice-chair: Steve Kowall, INEEL Frank Parker, Vanderbilt University Lorne Everett, IT Group Ed Weeks, USGS Carl Enfield, EPA Cathy Vogel, DoD John Wilson, New Mexico Tech Darwin Ellis, Schlumberger Corp. Dave Borns, SNL Rien Van Genuchten, USDA The Team (62 Representatives) DOE Laboratories 41% University 25% Industry 16% Other Federal Agency 11% International 5% State Government 2%

8 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Where Are We In The Planning Process Under Secretary Of Energy for Energy, Science and Environment Challenges INEEL to Lead Development of National Vadose Zone S&T Roadmap - Executive Committee Charted and Meets to Shape Project Scope and Direction - March 2000 Preliminary Draft Roadmap Published - September 2000 Briefing to DOE Management - October 2000 Stakeholder Meetings Initiated - March 2001 Final Roadmap to be Published - September 2001

9 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Stakeholder Outreach To broaden public understanding of Vadose Zone issues and program concept To improve the draft Roadmap and Scope Implementation Plan by integrating the insights and wisdom of others To cultivate relationships for the long term with scientists, DOE staff, other agencies and a variety of interested stakeholders

10 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory National Vadose Zone S&T Roadmap Web Site Website: Program Manager

11 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory National Vadose Zone Challenges Knowledge Gaps in Basic Subsurface Processes Are Sources of Uncertainty to Address and Bound Stewardship Responsibilities Require Increased Monitoring of Subsurface Processes Our Vision: A Four-Dimensional Description of Relevant Vadose Zone Processes & Parameters

12 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Vadose Zone Roadmap Research And Development Thrusts Develop Better Methods to Identify and Track (Monitor) Contaminants Achieve Better Measuring of Hydrologic Variables Better Integrate Geophysical and Hydrologic Data Develop Advances in Improved Sensors and Instrumentation

13 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Research and Development Thrusts (cont’d) Develop More Accurate Models & Simulations Develop A Vadose Zone Problem Solving Environment (PSE) - A Software Priority Develop A Dedicated High Power Computing Capability Develop Highly Accessible Data and Model Library

14 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory SUCCESS GOALS FOR IMPLEMENTATION DOE’s R&D Capabilities to Support Solutions to Major Environmental Management Problems Significantly Strengthened Reliable Approaches to Long Term Stewardship Monitoring and Predicting Established Strong Partnering with States and Other Federal Agencies Order of Magnitude (rather than incremental) Improvements over Existing Technologies Subsurface Science Base and Science Culture Built

15 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory BACK UP SLIDES

16 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory These processes are complex (not just complicated) to study and understand because they do not occur in isolation. Processes that are closely associated (coupled) and nonlinear in their interactions include: –Flow of fluids through variably saturated media –Transport rates of contaminants –Biogeochemical processes Knowledge Gaps in Basic Subsurface Processes Are Major Sources of Uncertainty to Address and Bound

17 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Stewardship Responsibilities Require Increased Knowledge of Physical Properties & Processes Describe fundamental interactions among liquids-gases-solids Accurately represent processes across different spatial and time scales Describe flow & transport in macroporous soils and unsaturated fractured media Need data at a range of scales –hydraulic & solute transport parameters –fluid properties –biogeochemical parameters –fluxes, temperature, pressures, compositions, mineral concentrations –fluid & chemical sources and sinks

18 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Our Vision: A Four-Dimensional Description of Relevant Vadose Zone Processes & Parameters A multidisciplinary approach to data collection and monitoring will help: –create and test models –confirm or alter theories –develop and verify simulations of past events –assess current conditions & site performance –support management decisions, regulatory rulemaking and future predictions

19 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Better Methods are Needed to Identify and Track Contaminants Fully explore monitoring technologies that are non-invasive and can distinguish various types of waste. Develop verification techniques for identifying character changes in a contaminant source Determine sensitivity limits of a measured chemicals in varied concentrations.

20 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Advancements are Needed for Compliance Monitoring of the Vadose Zone Review state-of-the-practice in monitoring network design. Develop an optimization methodology for subsurface characterization to save $$ Design decision support system to aid environmental managers in determining site and monitoring priorities

21 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Software Priority: A Vadose Zone Problem Solving Environment (PSE) Would unify mathematical, scientific and engineering ideas in one framework Would allow for testing of more hypotheses and decision variables Would inspire greater confidence in decisions

22 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory High Power Computing Capability Will Be Essential for Vadose Zone Analyses Need priority access to state-of-the-art, massively parallel or distributed computers House machines at national lab(s) for ease of use by university/lab environmental scientist Dedicate a support staff to train & assist scientists & engineers in applications

23 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory The Ultimate Challenge: Reducing Uncertainty in Models & Decisions Models must be appropriate for the intended purpose -- not too complex or overly simplistic, and yet pertinent. Quantifying uncertainty relies on understanding the site character, its subsurface processes and the boundary effects beyond our control. Uncertainty -- always an issue in the complex vadose zone

24 Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory U.S. General Accounting Office, Report on Hanford, 1998 (GAO-RCED-98-80) Research Needs in Subsurface Science, U.S. Department of Energy’s Environmental Management Program, National Research Council, 2000 Seeing Into the Earth, National Research Council, 2000 Long-Term Institutional Management of U.S. Department of Energy Legacy Waste Sites, National Research Council, 2000 Vadose Zone Science and Technology Solutions, Battelle Press, 2000 Conceptual Models of Flow and Transport in the Fractured Vadose Zone,National Research Council, 2001


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