Contribution 9

Submitted by: Andrea Dominijanni, Politecnico di Torino, Italy

Performance-based design of contaminant barriers (landfill liner systems and vertical cutoff walls)


Sample Description

(1) Course Name/Type: Advanced Geomechanics/Course in the 1st year of the Master’s degree programme in Civil Engineering with a specialist track in Geotechnics

(2) Course Emphasis: Geotechnical constitutive modelling, Unsaturated soil mechanics, Environmental Geotechnics (drainage systems, low permeability barriers, risk assessment for human health and the environment)

(3) Descriptive Title of Sample: Performance-based design of contaminant barriers (landfill liner systems and vertical cutoff walls)

(4) Brief Teaching Note: The performance-based design of pollutant containment systems, such as landfill bottom liners and cutoff walls, requires the impact of pollutant migration on groundwater quality to be assessed. The effectiveness of pollutant containment systems is demonstrated through the verification that the risk for human health and the environment due to pollutant migration is limited to an acceptable level. This risk is quantified through the calculation of the pollutant concentration in the groundwater, which is expected to remain less than some prescribed level at a compliance point. Analytical and numerical solutions to pollutant transport, which allow the pollutant concentration in the groundwater to be calculated under different boundary conditions, can be derived from water and pollutant balance equations (Dominijanni and Manassero, 2021). Based on the results obtained from these solutions, the role played not only by the hydraulic and diffusive properties of the containment barriers but also by the hydrogeological features of the site (e.g., the groundwater velocity and the mechanical dispersion within the aquifer) is pointed out.

(5) References: Dominijanni, A., and Manassero, M. (2021). Steady-state analysis of pollutant transport to assess landfill liner performance. Environmental Geotechnics 8(7): 480–494, https://doi.org/10.1680/jenge.19.00051

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