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Title:Numerical modeling of agricultural tile drainage water quality with health considerations
Author(s):Wright, Kevin Nathaniel
Director of Research:Davidson, Paul C
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Davidson, Paul C
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Kalita, Prasanta; Cooke, Richard; Druhan, Jennifer; Fischer-Brown, Amy
Department / Program:Engineering Administration
Discipline:Agricultural & Biological Engr
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Nitrogen, Nitrate, Tile, Drainage, Modeling
Abstract:Nitrogen fertilizers are an anthropogenic source of potential human and environmental health concerns. Variable rate fertilizer application technologies utilized by production agriculture increase the complexity of interactions with the natural environment, notably water quality originating from farm fields. In this study, the diversity in spatial and temporal variables was simulated using numerical methods and the reactive transport model TOUGHREACT to analyze these processes and thus better predict areas or scenarios of potential concern. Modeling results were calibrated and verified with 4 production agricultural field sites to better quantify and qualify nitrogen fate and transport and their potential impact on human health and the environment. In addition, health impacts were reviewed with respect to variable agricultural inputs. The numerical modeling methods provided insight into mixing and loading, but showcased that by the time concentration profiles reached the tile and sampling point, most loading information had been obscured. TOUGHREACT proved to be a valid and useful tool to simulate many of the factors affecting fate and transport, but additional calibration with real world data is needed. Agricultural applicators around the world are subject to many stresses and hazards regardless of the method of application, but acute exposure incidents are highly rare. Literature was reviewed to determine the common stressors and agents of injury for agricultural applicators. Additionally, the ensuing fate of nitrate in the environment and drinking water system was evaluated via a case study and spatial correlations. Results indicated populations influenced by agricultural nitrogen inputs into their water supply did not show a direct correlation to increased cancer risks.
Issue Date:2019-11-26
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Kevin Wright
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-03-02
Date Deposited:2019-12

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