Beginners > PHREEQC basics

Evaporate a solution using PHREEQC

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Tom:
Q. How can I simulate evaporation of a solution in PHREEQC? I am looking to investigate the minerals which are likely to precipitate.

A. Evaporation can be simulated using the REACTION keyword:

In the example below, 1 kg of a hypothetical solution (100 %) is evaporated.

----------------
SOLUTION 1
pH 7 charge #adjust pH in accordance with charge balance
units ppm
S(6) 1700
Mg 50
Ca 200
Fe 10
Si 10
water 1.0 #1 kg of water

REACTION 1
H2O -1.0 # -1.0 is the relative moles of the reaction.
55.51 moles in 10 steps #1 kg of water is 55.51 moles. 5.551 moles H2O removed per step (=100 ml H2O per step)
END

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From the output you can assess the SIs of phases at each step.

Charlie:

Adding this block will help assess the reaction progress:

SELECTED_OUTPUT
-reset                false
-step         true
-water               true

dlparkhurst:
For high evaporation factors, PHREEQC can fail to find the amount of water left in solution, and then the numerical method fails. Another approach that can be useful is to fix the activity of water with a pseudo phase as in the following script.

SOLUTION
Na   1
Cl   1
END
PHASES
water
H2O = H2O
log_k     0
END
USE solution 1
EQUILIBRIUM_PHASES 1
water     -0.1 10
END

liamabrahamsen:
That's an interesting approach. What effect does introducing the pseudo water phase have? Doesn't it simply replace the water that was removed in the evaporation step?

dlparkhurst:
You could have the same effect using the H2O(g) phase, but the target saturation index would be a bit harder to set up. With H2O(g), the target saturation index is equal to the log of the partial pressure of water that is desired. Whereas, the "water" phase simply removes (or adds) water until the log activity of water is equal to the target saturation index.