Evaluation of a permeable reactive barrier to capture and degrade hydrocarbon contaminants Academic Article uri icon


  • A permeable reactive barrier (PRB) was installed during 2005/2006 to intercept, capture and degrade a fuel spill at the Main Power House, Casey Station, Antarctica. Here, evaluation of the performance of the PRB is conducted via interpretation of total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) concentrations, degradation indices and most probable number (MPN) counts of total heterotroph and fuel degrading microbial populations. Results indicate that locations which contained the lowest TPH concentrations also exhibited the highest levels of degradation and numbers of fuel degrading microbes, based on the degradation indices and MPN methods selected. This provides insights to the most appropriate reactive materials for use in PRB's in cold and nutrient-limited environments.

publication date

  • August 2015