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An Image Processing Approach for the Characterization of Hazardous Agricultural Waste Transport in Multilayered Soils and Aquifers

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Computers in Agriculture and Natural Resources, 4th World Congress Conference, Proceedings of the 24-26 July 2006 (Orlando, Florida USA) Publication Date 24 July 2006  701P0606.(doi:10.13031/2013.21962)
Authors:   T. A. Fashanu, V.O.S. Olunloyo, and O. Ibidapo-Obe
Keywords:   Hazardous agricultural waste-water, groundwater pollution, stratification, image processing

The agric industry is responsible for a sizeable portion of the hazardous Aqueous Phase Liquids (APLs) and Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids (NAPLs) that endanger ground water resources. Primarily, agricultural sources of these contaminants include excessive organic and inorganic manure, as well as the residues of pesticides and herbicides. In the presence of these compounds, the safety of neighboring groundwater resources especially for domestic consumption depends on the physico-chemical ability of the parent aquifer either to delay the arrival of the contaminant at the water table, or to neutralize its toxicity. Traditionally, experimental, analytical and numerical models are used to simulate and assess the fate of these toxic contaminants in groundwater systems. However, most experimental models lack ability to capture real field situations due to scale effect. Analytical techniques are sometimes incoherent and their reliability often depends on the nature of approximation(s) involved. Similarly, most conventional numerical techniques exhibit various forms of pathologies especially in the presence of nontrivial discontinuities that are common in geological systems. In this work, the special ability of the Space-Time Conservation Element/ Solution Element numerical technique to handle discontinuity is combined with conventional spatial and spectral image processing tools. As a result, the work presents a numerical imaging technique for virtual characterization of the evolution history of advective, dispersive, and reactive transport of agricultural APLs and NAPLs within multilayered water bearing geological systems. Space Time CE/SE numerical images confirmed that the physiology of the interface between two geological laminates significantly affects the susceptibility of freshwater resources in the underlying aquifer to contaminant pollution.

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