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A shallow-layer model for heavy gas dispersion from natural sources: Application and hazard assessment at Caldara di Manziana, Italy

Costa, A.; Chiodini, G.; Granieri, D.; Folch, A.; Hankin, R.K.S.; Caliro, S.; Avino, R.; Cardellini, C.. 2008 A shallow-layer model for heavy gas dispersion from natural sources: Application and hazard assessment at Caldara di Manziana, Italy. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems (Online), 9. Q03002. 10.1029/2007GC001762

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Abstract/Summary

Several nonvolcanic sources in central Italy emit a large amount of carbon dioxide (CO2). Under stable atmospheric conditions and/or in the presence of topographic depressions, the concentration of CO2, which has a molecular mass greater than that of air, can reach high values that are lethal to humans or animals. Several episodes of this phenomenon were recorded in central Italy and elsewhere. In order to validate a model for the dispersion of a heavy gas and to assess the consequent hazard, we applied and tested the code TWODEE-2, an improved version of the established TWODEE model, which is based on a shallow-layer approach that uses depth-averaged variables to describe the flow behavior of dense gas over complex topography. We present results for a vented CO2 release at Caldara di Manziana in central Italy. We find that the model gives reliable results when the input quantity can be properly defined. Moreover, we show that the model can be a useful tool for gas hazard assessment by evaluating where and when lethal concentrations for humans and animals are reached.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1029/2007GC001762
ISSN: 1525-2027
Date made live: 27 Nov 2008 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/164074

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