Assessment and optimization of water quality
Understanding how aquifer interactions influence the quality of stored water especially with respect to trace metal mobilization constitutes another recognized knowledge gap. Injection of aerobic surface water into anoxic aquifers leads to oxidation of arsenic-containing pyrite (when present) and subsequently to the mobilization of arsenic. Presence of arsenic-pyrite is also highly likely and hypothesized as important arsenic sequestering process in the saline coastal deltas of Southeast Asia.
Well-developed, rigorous reactive transport models (RTMs) are needed to provide a quantitative basis for projection of arsenic mobilization and overall water quality development. Pathogen contamination is another concern. Pond water is the primary source of MAR systems, but ponds are contaminated at all 20 UNICEF MAR sites. Subsurface passage through existing MAR sand filters might not always be sufficient to guarantee pathogen-free water.
This PhD research project is executed by Muhammad Risalat Rafiq, under the supervision of Dr. Boris van Breukelen and Prof. Dr. Kazi Matin Ahmed.