Modeling virus survival and transport in the subsurface

Marylynn V. Yates, S. R. Yates, Jan Wagner, Charles P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


The significance of viruses as agents of waterborne disease in the United States is just beginning to be recognized. The ability to predict how far viruses can be transported and how long they can remain infective in soil and groundwater is desirable from the standpoint of planning the placement of sources of contamination so that they will not have an impact on drinking-water wells. This, in turn should have the effect of decreasing the number of waterborne disease outbreaks caused by viruses. This article reviews the factors that affect the survival and migration of viruses in soils and groundwater. It also discusses the efforts that have been made to mathematically model the movement of viruses in the subsurface, including the assumptions made by the modelers. At this time, it appears that modeling efforts are constrained by a lack of quantitative information on virus interactions with soil and fluid media, rather than on mathematical solution techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)329-345
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Contaminant Hydrology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Water Science and Technology


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