THEREDA – A thermodynamic database for increasing confidence in waste disposal

THEREDA – A thermodynamic database for increasing confidence in waste disposal

Richter, A.; Bok, F.; Brendler, V.

For geochemical modeling of scenarios for the disposal of radioactive and (chemo)toxic waste, comprehensive and internally consistent thermodynamic data are required as well as sorption data for the surrounding host rocks. The use of different databases renders it difficult to compare results of geochemical modeling, due to incompleteness, inconsistencies, resticted ranges of variation (temperature, density, pressure), limitations in solution composition (ionic strength) and last but not least missing sorption data.
THEREDA (THErmodynamic REference DAtabase, – a cooperative project of leading research institutes in Germany – adresses these issues, providing full documentation, transparency of all data and a detailed quality assurance scheme [1,2].
THEREDA contains data for the three ion-ion interaction models: extendend Debye-Hückel, Specific Ion Interaction Theory, and Pitzer model. At present, two datasets has been released: the oceanic salt system (Na+, K+, Mg2+, Ca2+, Cl−, SO42−, H+, and H2O(l) within a temperature range of 273.15–523.15 K) and Am/Nd/Cm (Am(III), Nd(III), Cm(III), Na+, Mg2+, Ca2+, Cl−, H+, H2O(l) at 273.15 K). Tailored parameter files for various geochemical modeling codes are provided (PhreeqC, ChemApp, EQ3/6, Geochemist‘s Workbench). Documented benchmark calculations allow comparisons with other databases as well as between the different geochemical codes. All data, documentation and references are freely accessible via the projects homepage. Additionally, a user forum allows direct contact with the THEREDA members.
A holistic view of geochemical processes in the context of a safety analysis requires the inclusion of sorption calculations. A thermodynamically consistent treatment of these processes is only possible with surface complexation modeling (SCM). Respective data are already compiled in the RES³T database [3] (, providing competing entries for many systems. An integration into THEREDA thus not only requires a synchronisation of data structures but also a rigorous review process, leading to uniform recommended data sets for each sorbent-sorptive system. This data review process is already in progress.

[1] Altmaier et al. (2011), Report GRS-265, 63 p.
[2] Altmaier et al. (2008) ATW 53, 249–253.
[3] Brendler et al. (2003) J. Contam. Hydrol. 61, 281–291.

Keywords: thermodynamic database; THEREDA; sorption database; RES3T; geochemical modeling

  • Abstract in refereed journal
    Mineralogical Magazine 76(2012), 2283
  • Lecture (Conference)
    Goldschmidt 2012, 24.-29.06.2012, Montreal, Canada

Publ.-Id: 16693