Mapping of hydrocarbon- and scrap-metal-contaminated soil using volatile organic compounds and electromagnetic profiling methods
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The electromagnetic profiling method detects lateral changes in soil conductivity up to a certain depth. Volatile organic compounds are most commonly found in sites contaminated by hydrocarbons. This work presents the results of the application of electromagnetic profiling and volatile organic compound methods for detecting hydrocarbon and buried scrap metal contamination zones at a 48-ha site that was used as an industrial waste dump for many years. Potentially contaminated zones were configured based on a joint analysis of low resistivity anomalies (mature pollution) and high concentrations of volatile organic compounds, which reduced the amount of soil sampling through optimal location of the drilling points. Chemical analysis in 54 soil samples showed the presence of three hydrocarbon-contaminated zones that produced total petroleum hydrocarbon values higher than 10,000 ppm. Buried scrap metal was detected by anomalous in-phase measurements obtained by an electromagnetic profiling survey, facilitating future removal works.