22-27 September 2019
Trade Fairs and Congress Center (FYCMA)
Europe/Madrid timezone

Assessing the potential of denitrification through Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR)

23 Sep 2019, 16:00
Trade Fairs and Congress Center (FYCMA)

Trade Fairs and Congress Center (FYCMA)

Av. de José Ortega y Gasset, 201 29006 Malaga, Spain
Poster Topic 5.3 - Advanced modelling tools for subsurface hydrology: from the vadose zone to deep environments Poster with refreshments


Mr Muhammad Muqeet Iqbal (IGRAC and TU Dresden)


Nitrate (NO3) is a common contaminant in groundwater and surface water worldwide. Denitrification is a microbial respiratory process in which dissolved NO3 is reduced to nitrogen gas (N2). Research has shown that MAR can enhance natural attenuation of nitrates by accelerating denitrification that occurs during groundwater recharge and groundwater flow. However, very few MAR sites aim primarily at denitrification and the physical and biochemical processes controlling denitrification through MAR are not well-documented. This study aims at assessing the potential for denitrification through MAR, taking into consideration factors such as redox conditions, availability of organic matter, aquifer hydraulics and nitrate concentration. Based on a literature review, a conceptual model was developed which incorporates the most significant factors for enhanced biological denitrification. This conceptual model can provide the basis for a numerical model to obtain the optimal range of dissolved oxygen, redox potential and easily biodegradable organic matter which will lead to a maximum denitrification rate within a MAR setting. Using spatial distribution of soil parameters and other site characteristics, the potential for denitrification through MAR was mapped over Europe. This map can serve to select pilot areas for further experimental research in the field. Characterization of optimal conditions for denitrification through MAR and their spatial distribution can provide a focus for future field studies and ultimately assist practitioners and policy-makers to reduce nitrate contamination in aquifers.

Primary author

Mr Muhammad Muqeet Iqbal (IGRAC and TU Dresden)


Dr Arnaud Sterckx (IGRAC) Dr Catalin Stefan (Technische Universität Dresden)

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