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Ground-water contamination at Air Force Plant PJKS, Waterton Canyon, Colorado

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Ground-water contamination at Air Force Plant PJKS, Waterton Canyon, Colorado

Study Area: Waterton Canyon, Colorado
Period of Project: Ongoing
Project Number: CO280
Project Chief: Earl Cassidy
Cooperator: US Air Force


The site, Air Force Plant PJKS (AFP PJKS) is a former government-owned, contractor-operated facility. The contractor, Lockheed Martin Corporation, has used the facility in the testing and development of launch vehicles such as the Titan II rocket. Because soil and ground-water contamination resulted from activities at AFP PJKS over many years, the site has been designated a USEPA Superfund site. The primary ground-water contaminants of concern are solvents such as trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene(PCE), trichloroethane, chloroform and rocket fuel breakdown products such as N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). The Air Force has asked the USGS for technical assistance concerning contaminated ground water at the site.


  1. To investigate the potential of zero valent iron (ZVI) technology to remediate contaminated ground water.
  2. To evaluate geophysical methods to determine which methods potentially could provide geotechnical information needed for site remediation.
  3. To provide technical assistance to AFP PJKS related to ground-water investigations such as:
    1. Reviewing work plans for ground-water investigations
    2. Reviewing ground-water reports for technical accuracy, adequacy of data, and appropriate interpretation of data.
  4. To characterize crystalline and sedimentary rocks in selected boreholes using geophysical logging.
  5. To determine the role of fractures, if any, in contaminant transport.

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