International Journal of Environmental Sciences

Volume 2 Issue 4 2012           Pages:2328- 2337

Application of Electrical Impedance Tomography (EIT) in the investigation of the impact of solid waste leachate contaminant plumes on groundwater

Author Information:

Olowofela Joseph  Department of Physics, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria

Akinyemi Olukayode  Department of Physics, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria

Ogungbe Abiola  Department of Physics, Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos, Nigeri


A Direct- Current Electrical Impedance Tomography (EIT) was carried out at Solous 2 open dumpsite in Alimosho Local Government area of Lagos State, Nigeria. The dumpsite is a typical non-controlled waste facility that lacks bottom liner. Four (4) profiles employing the Neighboring method of EIT were conducted at different stations on the dumpsite with the aim of investigating the depth of subsurface leachate contaminant plumes of the area. The inversion of the EIT voltage data was accomplished using the Electrical Impedance and Diffuse Optical Reconstruction Software (EIDORS) version 3.0 toolkit for MATLAB to obtain three-dimensional (3D) conductivity profiles of the dumpsite. The scheme utilized in this paper is a forward solution solved with a mesh of 768 finite elements with 205 nodes. With the aid of the 3D impedance tomograms, regions of high conductivity ranging from 2000 mS/m to 4000 mS/m were delineated. These are believed to be leachate derived from decomposed waste. Non-degraded refuse occurred as regions of high resistivity (depicted with negative conductivity values on the tomograms). The results show that the leachate contaminant plumes were found to have migrated about 50m away from the base of the dumpsite which is in agreement with those from earlier studies using conventional geophysical techniques.  These revelations are alarming considering the implications on the health of the people and the environment if not checked. The study showed that the Electrical Impedance Tomography which has been used extensively in the medical field can be effective in the investigation of leachate contaminant plumes around refuse dumpsites.

Keywords: Electrical Impedance Tomography, Solid Waste, Leachate, Contaminant plume, Groundwater

DOI: 10.6088/ijes.00202030114

© 2012 Copyright Olowofela Joseph et al, licensee IPA.This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (2.0) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The electronic version of the article can be downloaded below.

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