International Conference on Oil Spills in the Mediterranean and Black Sea Regions: Impact, Contingency Planning, response, Technology for Containment and Recovery, İstanbul, Turkey, 15 - 18 September 1998, pp.1-11
When Underground Petroleum Storage Tanks leak, contaminating the surrounding soil and groundwater, remediation costs can become very high. The composite liner developed not only encapsulates the leaking petroleum but also, due to the swelling pressure which develps in teh liner, seals the cracks causing a decrease in teh hydraulic conductivity. Clays are typically used as low conductivity liners. When hydrocarbons come in to contact with clays, the diffuse double layer of the clay shrinks and the hydraulic conductivity of the clay increases by an order of magnitude. Fiber shaped rubber threads obtained as a byproduct of the tire retread industry are mixed with clay and compacted as a liner around the petroleum and the swelling pressure developed seals the cracks. The potential for contamination is further decreased because a volume of petroleum equal to the volume of rubber in the composite liner may be absorbed and encapsulated by the rubber particles. The technology is under developmet since 1989 and has been patented since 1996. A summary of the development of the technique is presented.