Ecovac Services / Projects / Railroad /

South Bend, Indiana


South Bend, Indiana (Railroad site)


Separate-phase hydrocarbons (SPH) present in 7 monitor/recovery wells ranging in thicknesses from 0.02 to 1.17 feet


Fine to medium sand with some coarse gravel


SURFAC® Pilot Testing was conducted to collect data to implement EcoVac Services’ patented SURFAC® process.  SURFAC® is proposed due to its proven cost effective results, the site’s limited access, and failure of current remediation activities to remove SPH.  EcoVac’s treatability study predicts that SURFAC® will result in a 96% contaminant (diesel) removal at this site


EcoVac Services was retained to remove SPH from the site after the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) required a more aggressive cleanup approach.  A remediation system consisting of two recovery wells containing skimmer pumps has been utilized at the site for a number of years.


The site consists of fine to medium sand with some coarse gravel a shallow perched zone at about ten feet below grade.  The aquifer is present at approximately 7 to 20 feet below grade.  Groundwater is present at approximately 45 feet below grade beneath a railroad embankment.

Treatment Methodology

EcoVac Services was contracted to implement SURFAC® at this site due to the challenging conditions (i.e. geology/hydrogeology conditions, extent of SPH plume, ongoing presence of SPH despite previous and current remedial activities, and limited site access).

EcoVac Services’ patented SURFAC® process is the combination of dual-phase/multi-phase extraction and surfactant injection.

EcoVac Services also conducted a treatability and SURFAC® simulation study using site media. The study indicated that SURFAC® will result in a 96% diesel fuel recovery at this site.

Additional EFR® (mobile dual-phase/multi-phase extraction) events are proposed for the site until SPH thicknesses are reduced to approximately <0.5 feet/well.  SURFAC® will be implemented at this site once SPH thicknesses have decreased and the SPH plume has been further delineated.

SURFAC® Pilot Test Results and Conclusions

A three-day SURFAC® Pilot Test was conducted at the site to (1) determine the surfactant injection volumes and sequencing, (2) achieve contaminant removal by the multi-phase/dual-phase extraction process, (3) reduce the aerial and vertical extent of the plumes, (4) assess the potential need for additional injection wells, (5) determine if additional EFR® events are necessary prior to surfactant injection, and (6) determine the duration of the surfactant injection.

South Bend, Indiana

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