Contaminated sites managed by in situ treatments always require direct contact between
the remediation agent and the contaminant. In-situ remediation is therefore limited to highly permeable soils to ensure proper distribution of the remediation agents into the contaminated matrices.However, the FRAC-IN technology enables remedial agents to be injected into sites with a low permeability. It combines direct-push drilling – an innovative delivery method used for emplacement of remediation agents in situ without needing to install permanent wells – with pneumatic and hydraulic fracturing to inject remediation agents into low permeable contaminated soils. The FRAC-IN technology creates secondary porosity at the same time as applying the reactive substances, enabling the creation of large reactive zones in the contaminated aquifer.
The LIFE FRAC-IN project aims to:
- Validate the FRAC-IN technology in different field environments covering a range of geological conditions and contaminants, as well as support full-scale applications of the technology at other sites;
- Establish a framework for determining the FRAC-IN technology’s feasibility in terms of economic, environmental and technical considerations; and
- Promote the FRAC-IN technology in EU policy on soil remediation and brownfield redevelopment.
The project will help implement the Soil Thematic Strategy and support the Seventh Environment Action Programme in relation to soil remediation and brownfield redevelopment.
- Partial clean-up of seven test sites (2 500 m²);
- Removal of chemical substances from the environment:
- 127 kg chromium (VI)
- 2 460 kg (chlorinated) solvents
- 5 000 kg mineral oil
- Reduction of CO2 emission by 92% (1 385 tonnes);
- Verification of the optimal vertical extent for successful FRAC-IN applications;
- Verification of the compatibility of FRAC-IN with established remediation techniques; and
- EU-wide dissemination.