PARTRAC GROUP, US Navy Sign Major Contract

PARTRAC GROUP, US Navy Sign Major Contract

The PARTRAC GROUP have been awarded a project by the United States Navy for the provision of particle tracking services at a number of Department of Defense (DOD) sites. 

The Group, headquartered in Glasgow, are to demonstrate a unique particle tracking technique at locations where there are multiple outfall discharges into adjacent marine waters.

Contaminated aquatic sediments are found in many of the world’s industrialized cities due to both legacy and contemporary pollution sources. Overflow discharges from outfalls following storm events can deliver point source contaminated sediments to water bodies. In order to develop management approaches to limit pollution sources it is essential to have some understanding of the dynamics of contaminant sources and the transport pathways of the contaminated particulates. Particle tracking offers a practical means to map the transport pathways of contaminated sediments both at the point of delivery into waterways and following delivery through time and across space.

To effectively target control and remediation strategies it is critical to reconcile the various contributing sources of sediments which contain contaminants of concern. The innovative aspect of this project will show how specialized tracer particles – which are uniquely identifiable owing to their fluorescent and magnetic labels – can be used to quantitatively predict the depositional footprint of particles released from typical outfall discharges. Successful demonstration of the particle tracking approach will serve to define this approach as a new and practical tool for examination of transport-fate issues for contaminated aquatic sediments in DoD (and other) locations.

Technical Director Dr Kevin Black commented: “Understanding the transport and fate of contaminated sediments in aquatic systems is critical to implementation of effective remediation strategies; the particle tracking technique that we have developed over the past 8 years, which uses a unique ‘dual signature’ technology consisting of a fluorescent tag on each particle which is also magnetic, is perfectly suited to such an application. We are delighted to have worked with the US Navy in developing the project, and look forward to the demonstration of the technique in selected sites of concern”

The Partrac Group consists of a leading oceanographic, environmental and geosciences survey company (Partrac) and a coastal and marine geosciences consultancy (Partrac Consulting).

Naval Today Staff, June 13, 2012; Image: Patrac Group