In eight collaborative projects we intend to close the gap between relevant processes identified in the laboratory and mechanisms of mass transfer and metabolic transformations on the landscape scale.
Research Focus & Structure
Our research addresses pollutant turnover and reactive zones within the most relevant landscape elements and compartments aligned along the reversed water flow from rivers as integrators of pollutant fluxes in landscapes (project P1), nested and contrasting low-order sub-catchments including the groundwater/ surface-water interface (P2), hillslopes and floodplains (P3-P4), the underlying fractured/karstic aquifer system (P5), and finally soils (P6). Within these compartments, we will identify and quantify the most relevant transport and transformation proces-ses, i.e. biodegradation in biofilms (P1), turnover at steep redox gradients (P2-P4), diffusion-controlled slow turnover in the rock matrix (P5), and limitations of pollutant turnover in soil compartments (P6). We develop a stochastic modeling framework (P7-P8) addressing the conceptual and parametric uncertainty of reactive transport on the catchment scale in the interpretation of the monitoring data, in predicting the development of water quality, and in designing experiments to reduce uncertainty. Supporting projects of CAMPOS provided laboratory analysis and maintenance of field sites (Z1), central modeling support (Z2), and data infrastructure (INF).
Field Sites & Target Compounds
Research focusses on shared study sites in the catchment of River Ammer, a tributary of River Neckar in SW-Germany, in close vicinity to the City of Tübingen. We have selected a set of lead substances, which will be monitored across all field sites, including: nitrate as a major groundwater pollutant, a set of herbicides with widely varying physicochemical properties, persistent organic pollutants, and micropollutants frequently found in rivers such as pharmaceuticals, personal care products and their respective metabolites.