Modeling the transport and retention of nC 60 nanoparticles in the subsurface under different release scenarios

Chunmei Bai, Yusong Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The escalating production and consumption of engineered nanomaterials may lead to their increased release into groundwater. A number of studies have revealed the potential human health effects and aquatic toxicity of nanomaterials. Understanding the fate and transport of engineered nanomaterials is very important for evaluating their potential risks to human and ecological health. While there has been a great deal of research effort focused on the potential risks of nanomaterials, a limited amount of work has evaluated the transport of engineered nanomaterials under different release scenarios in a typical layered geological field setting. In this work, we simulated the transport of fullerene aggregates (nC 60), a widely used engineered nanomaterial, in a multi-dimensional environment. A Modular Three-Dimensional Multispecies Transport Model (MT3DMS) was modified to evaluate the transport and retention of nC 60 nanoparticles. Hypothetical scenarios for the introduction of nanomaterials into the subsurface environment were investigated, including the release from an injection well and the release from a waste site. Under the conditions evaluated, the mobility of nC 60 nanoparticles was found to be very sensitive to the release scenario, release concentration, aggregate size, collision efficiency factor, and dispersivity of the nanomaterial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-55
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Contaminant Hydrology
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • Mobility
  • Nanoparticles
  • Subsurface
  • nC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Water Science and Technology


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