Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Geological and Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Richard N. Passero

Second Advisor

Dr. Duane Hampton

Third Advisor

Dr. Alan Kehew

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


A soil gas sampling and analytical technique was investigated to evaluate its ability and versatility for detecting chlorinated hydrocarbons in unconfined aquifers. The technique was used successfully to delineate plumes of perchloroethene (PCE), and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCA) contamination present in the vadose zone, and at the water table of an unconfined sand and gravel aquifer. Soil gas samples were obtained by concentrating PCE and TCA vapors diffusing from these sources onto a sorbent material. The samples were analyzed by gas chromatography. The data from the analysis of these samples were used to provide an initial estimate of the source areas, and the areal extent of the groundwater plumes beneath the study area. These estimates were confirmed with water quality data. High degrees of correlation were proven to exist between the soil gas and water quality data obtained during this study.