Kevin Mumford PhD


Civil Engineering, Faculty
Phone: 613-533-6325
Fax: 613-533-2128
Ellis Hall, Room: 206

Expertise: Contaminant fate and transport in groundwater, soil and groundwater remediation technologies, laboratory investigation of multiphase flow and mass transfer in porous media, behaviour of gases in the subsurface
Kevin Mumford
Biography Research Publications Awards & Grants Graduate Students Open Positions

Dr. Kevin Mumford is an Environmental Engineer committed to helping us better understand the behaviour of contaminants in subsurface environments and how that understanding can be used to protect and remediate soil and groundwater.  He directs a research group focused on the investigation of multiphase flow and mass transfer in groundwater systems, including those related to non-aqueous phase liquids (NAPLs) and subsurface gases, using a combination of laboratory experiments and numerical models, to develop and improve site investigation strategies and remediation technologies.



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Civil Engineering (McMaster University)
Thesis: Spontaneous expansion and mobilization of a discontinuous gas phase due to mass transfer from dense non-aqueous phase liquid


Master of Applied Science (MASc) in Civil Engineering (University of Waterloo)
Thesis: Investigation of natural oxidant demand reactions in a sandy aquifer material


Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) in Environmental Engineering (Chemical) (University of Waterloo)


Professional and Academic Experience:

2016 - Present

Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Queen's University


Acting Associate Head, Department of Civil Engineering, Queen’s University

2010 - 2016

Assistant Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Queen's University


Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, University of Western Ontario


Sessional Lecturer, Department of Civil Engineering, McMaster University

2004 - 2007

Teaching Assistant, Department of Civil Engineering, McMaster University

2002 - 2004

Consultant, Geomatrix Consultants and Engineers Inc., Waterloo, Ontario

2000 - 2002

Teaching Assistant, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo

What we do: The world is connected by water. Water resources, including groundwater, are under enormous pressure from the effects of climate change, energy resource development, and the impact of emerging contaminants. There is an urgent need to protect and manage the quantity and quality of groundwater to promote its sustainable use in a global society. With this larger objective in mind, the Mumford Research Group is focused on answering questions related to groundwater contamination and remediation, with a particular interest in multiphase flow and mass transfer in porous media. Our research uses high-resolution experiments conducted in physical laboratory models of groundwater systems in combination with advanced numerical models to identify key processes and explore their effects at the field scale.

In Situ Thermal Remediation: Heating soil and groundwater to remove volatile and semi-volatile compounds is an aggressive and effective remediation technology, particularly for the removal of non-aqueous phase liquids (NAPLs) such as a petroleum fuels and chlorinated solvents. Thermal technologies often rely on the production, capture and treatment of a gas phase, whose migration is sensitive to subsurface heterogeneities. Advances are needed to effectively and efficiently treat compounds with higher boiling points, reduce energy consumption, and develop combined technologies.


Subsurface Gas Migration: Gases in shallow aquifers can be created by a wide variety of mechanisms, including by in situ remediation technologies, microbial populations, and leaks from improperly sealed deeper wells, and include gases relevant to GHG emissions such as CO2 and CH4. Their migration is controlled by both capillary and buoyancy forces, resulting in a complex and dynamic gas architecture. Questions remain concerning the dissolution of these trapped gases, interactions with background dissolved gases, and effects on emissions, persistence, investigation and monitoring.



Subsurface Gas Migration: Gases in shallow aquifers can be created by a wide variety of mechanisms, including by in situ remediation technologies, microbial populations, and leaks from improperly sealed deeper wells, and include gases relevant to GHG emissions such as CO2 and CH4. Their migration is controlled by both capillary and buoyancy forces, resulting in a complex and dynamic gas architecture. Questions remain concerning the dissolution of these trapped gases, interactions with background dissolved gases, and effects on emissions, persistence, investigation and monitoring.


Bubble-facilitated VOC Transport: Gas bubbles can be created by a wide variety of natural and remediation-based mechanisms, including gas trapping during water table fluctuations, biogenic gas production, and the exsolution of gases produced by remediation reactions. It is important to understand the effect of these gases on contaminant transport, including through the mobilization of gas bubbles and the partitioning of contaminants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), to the gas phase or gas-water interface. Implications of these effects include natural source zone depletion and vapour intrusion.


Simulation using Macroscopic Invasion Percolation: Numerical models of multiphase flow using macroscopic invasion percolation (macro-IP) are an alternative to traditional continuum-based approaches that is particularly well suited for simulating unstable non-wetting phase invasion, including fragmentation and mobilization processes. Continuum-based models of heat and mass transport have been coupled to macro-IP models to provide insight into in situ thermal remediation, methane dynamics in peatlands, and the bubble-facilitated transport of volatile organic compounds (VOCs).



Google Scholar

Research Gate

  1. Farooq, A.J., M. Chamberlain, A. Poonja, K.G. Mumford, S. Wallace, K.P. Weber (2022), Peaks, pores, and dragon eggs: Uncovering and quantifying the heterogeneity of treatment wetland biofilm matrices, Science of the Total Environment, 158857.
  2. Mumford, K.G.*, Bryck, B.H. Kueper, S. Mancini, M. Kavanaugh, D. Reynolds (2022), Virtual site investigation to evaluate conceptual site model development at DNAPL-impacted sites, Accepted for publication in Groundwater Monitoring and Remediation.
  3. Davidson, M.A., K.G. Mumford*, N. Mullins, M. Calvert (2022), Modification of a 3D printer to create geologically-realistic structures to investigate gas migration using the light transmission technique, Accepted for publication in Vadose Zone Journal, e20216.
  4. Wu, J., Nunez Garcia*, K.G. Mumford (2022), Ebullition-facilitated mobilization of trapped dense non-aqueous phase liquid at residual saturation from sandy sediments, Accepted for publication in Journal of Environmental Management, 317, 115448.
  5. Ashmore, N.A., C.J.C. Van De Ven, L.J. Molofsky, K.G. Mumford* (2022), Calculation of gas ratios for use in source identification for stray gas migration, Groundwater, 60(3), 312-317.
  6. Slater, G.F.*, C.A. Goad, M.B.J. Lindsay, K.G. Mumford T.E. Colenbrander Nelson, F. Risacher, G.L. Jessen, J. Mori, P. Morris, D. Arriaga, L.A. Warren (2021), Isotopic and chemical assessment of the dynamics of methane sources and microbial cycling during early development of an oil sands pit lake, Microorganisms, 9(12), 2509.
  7. Mumford, K.G.*, M. Martin, B.H. Kueper (2021), Removal of trichloroethene from thin clay lenses by electrical resistance heating: laboratory experiments and the effects of gas saturation, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 243, 103892.
  8. Banerjee, I.*, A. Guthke, C. Van De Ven, K.G. Mumford, W. Nowak (2021), Overcoming the model-data-fit problem in porous media: A quantitative method to compare invasion-percolation models to high-resolution data, Water Resources Research, 57.
  9. Van De Ven, C.J.C.*, K.G. Mumford (2020), Intermediate-scale laboratory investigation of stray gas migration impacts: methane source architecture and dissolution, Environmental Science and Technology, 54(10), 6299-6307.
  10. Van De Ven, C.J.C.*, F. Abraham, K.G. Mumford (2020), Laboratory investigation of free-phase stray gas migration in shallow aquifers using modified light transmission, Advances in Water Resources, 139, 103543.
  11. Liu, B.*, G. Li, K.G. Mumford, B.H. Kueper, F. Zhang (2020), Low permeability zone remediation of trichloroethene via coupling electrokinetic migration with in situ electrochemical hydrodechlorination, Chemosphere, 250, 126209.
  12. Xie, Q.*, Mumford, B.H. Kueper (2020), Modelling gas-phase recovery of volatile organic compounds during in-situ thermal treatment, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 234, 103698.
  13. Turner, L.P, B.H. Kueper, K.M. Jannsalu, D.J. Patch, N. Battye, El-Sharnouby, K.G. Mumford, K.P. Weber* (2020), Mechanochemical remediation of PFOS and PFOA amended sand and AFFF impacted soil by planetary ball milling, Science of the Total Environment, In Press.
  14. Van De Ven, C.J.C.*, K.G. Mumford (2020), Aqueous and surface expression of subsurface GHGs: Mass transfer effects on emissions, Water Research, 170(1), 115327.
  15. Van De Ven, C.J.C.*, K.G. Mumford (2020), Intermediate-scale laboratory investigation of stray gas migration impacts: transient gas migration and surface expression, Environmental Science and Technology, 54(19), 12493-12501.
  16. Mohammed, O., K.G. Mumford*, B.E. Sleep (2020), Effects of hydrogen gas production, trapping and bubble-facilitated transport during nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) injection in porous media, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 234, 103677.
  17. Mohammed, O., K.G. Mumford*, B.E. Sleep (2019), Relative permeability measurements during the exsolution and dissolution of hydrogen gas produced by the hydrolysis of sodium borohydride, Vadose Zone Journal, 18(1), 190043.
  18. Xie, Q.*, Mumford, B.H. Kueper (2019), A numerical model for estimating the removal of volatile organic compounds in laboratory-scale treatability tests for thermal treatment of NAPL-impacted soils, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 226, 103526.
  19. Van De Ven, C.J.C.*, K.G. Mumford (2019), Characterization of gas injection flow patterns subject to gravity and viscous forces, Vadose Zone Journal, 18(1), doi:10.2136/02.0014.
  20. Molnar, I.L., K.G. Mumford, M.M. Krol* (2019), Electro-thermal subsurface gas generation and transport: model validation and implications, Water Resources Research, doi:10.1029/
  21. Fruetel, C., Mumford*, A.M.F da Silva, A. Rey, K.S. Bascom (2019), A laboratory method for the visualization and quantification of hyporheic flow paths and velocities, Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, 46(5), 448-457.
  22. Hicknell, B.N., Mumford*, B.H. Kueper (2018), Laboratory study of creosote removal from sand at elevated temperatures, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 219,40-49.
  23. Van De Ven, C.J.C., K.G. Mumford* (2018), Visualization of gas dissolution following upward gas migration in porous media: technique and implications for stray gas, Advances in Water Resources, 115, 33-43.
  24. Hossain, S.Z., K.G. Mumford*, A. Rutter (2017), Laboratory study of mass transfer from diluted bitumen trapped in gravel, Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts, 19, 1583-1593.
  25. Hossain, S.Z., K.G. Mumford* (2017), Capillary pressure-saturation relationships for diluted bitumen and water in gravel, Journal of Hydrology, 551, 306-313.
  26. Soucy, N.C., K.G. Mumford* (2017), Bubble-facilitated VOC transport from LNAPL smear zones and its potential effect on vapor intrusion, Environmental Science & Technology, 20 pages, 51(5), 2795-2802.
  27. Martin, E.M., K.G. Mumford*, B.H. Kueper, G.A. Siemens (2017), Gas formation in sand and clay during electrical resistance heating, International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 110, 855-862.
  28. Sills, L.K., K.G. Mumford*, G.A. Siemens (2017), Quantification of fluid saturations in transparent porous media, Vadose Zone Journal, 16(2), doi:10.2136/vzj2016.06.0052.
  29. Munholland, J.L., K.G. Mumford*, B.H. Kueper (2016), Gas migration and contaminant redistribution in heterogeneous porous media subject to electrical resistance heating, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 184, 14-24.
  30. Martin, E.M., K.G. Mumford*, B.H. Kueper (2016), Electrical resistance heating of clay layers in water-saturated sand, Groundwater Monitoring and Remediation, 36(1), 54-61.
  31. Cianflone S.P.L., S.E. Dickson*, K.G. Mumford (2016), On the importance of gravity in DNAPL invasion of saturated horizontal fractures, Groundwater, doi:10.1111/gwat.12441.
  32. Mumford, K.G.*, Mustafa, J.I Gerhard (2015), Probabilistic risk assessment of contaminant transport in groundwater and vapour intrusion following remediation of a contaminant source, Stochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment, 30(3), 1017-1031.
  33. Mumford, K.G.*, Hegele, G. Vandenberg (2015), Comparison of two-dimensional and three-dimensional macroscopic invasion percolation simulations to laboratory experiments of gas bubble flow in homogeneous sands, Vadose Zone Journal, 14(11), doi:10.2136/ vzj2015.02.0028.
  34. Hegele, P.R., K.G. Mumford* (2015), Dissolved gas exsolution to enhance gas production and transport during bench-scale electrical resistance heating, Advances in Water Resources, 79, 153-161.
  35. Siemens, G.A.*, K.G. Mumford, Kucharczuk (2015), Characterization of transparent soil for use in heat transport experiments, ASTM Geotechnical Testing Journal, 38(5), doi: 10.1520/GTJ20140218.
  36. Hegele, P.R., K.G. Mumford* (2014), Gas production and transport during bench-scale electrical resistance heating of water and trichloroethene, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 165, 24-36.
  37. Zhao, C., K.G. Mumford*, B.H. Kueper (2014), Laboratory study of non-aqueous phase liquid and water co-boiling during thermal treatment, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 164, 49-68.
  38. Mustafa, N., K.G. Mumford*, J.I. Gerhard, D.M. O’Carroll (2014), A three-dimensional numerical model for linking community-wide vapour risks, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 156, 38-51.
  39. Krol, M.M., K.G. Mumford, R.L. Johnson, B.E. Sleep* (2011), Modeling discrete gas bubble formation and mobilization during subsurface heating of contaminated zones, Advances in Water Resources, 34(4), 537-549.
  40. Mumford, K.G.*, D.M. O’Carroll (2011), Drainage under nonequilibrium conditions: exploring wettability and dynamic contact angle effects using bundle-of-tubes simulations, Vadose Zone Journal, 10, 1162-1172.
  41. O’Carroll, D.M.*, K.G. Mumford, L.M. Abriola, J.I. Gerhard (2010), The influence of wettability variations on dynamic effects in capillary pressure, Water Resources Research, 46, W08505, doi:10.1029/2009WR008712.
  42. Mumford, K.G., J.E. Smith*, S.E. Dickson (2010), The effect of spontaneous gas expansion and mobilization on the aqueous-phase concentrations above a dense non-aqueous phase liquid pool, Advances in Water Resources, 33, 504-513.
  43. Mumford, K.G., J.E. Smith*, S.E. Dickson (2009), New observations of gas-phase expansion above a non-aqueous phase liquid pool, Vadose Zone Journal, 8(2), 404-410.
  44. Mumford, K.G., S.E. Dickson, J.E. Smith* (2009), Slow gas expansion in saturated natural porous media by gas injection and partitioning with non-aqueous phase liquids, Advances in Water Resources, 32, 29-40.
  45. Mumford, K.G., J.E. Smith*, S.E. Dickson (2008), Mass flux from a non-aqueous phase liquid pool considering spontaneous expansion of a discontinuous gas phase, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 98, 85-96.
  46. Mumford, K.G., J.F. MacGregor, S.E. Dickson*, R.H. Frappa (2007), Multivariate analysis of groundwater and soil data from a waste disposal site, Ground Water Monitoring and Remediation Winter 2007, 92-102.
  47. Mumford, K.G., N.R. Thomson*, R.M. Allen-King (2005), Bench-scale investigation of permanganate natural oxidant demand kinetics, Environmental Science and Technology, 39(8), 2835-2840.
  48. Mumford, K.G., C. Lamarche, N.R. Thomson* (2004), Natural oxidant demand of aquifer materials using the push-pull technique with permanganate, Journal of Environmental Engineering, 130(10), 1139-1146.


Civil Engineering Teaching Award, Queen’s University, Dept. of Civil Engineering


Excellence in Research Award, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Queen’s University


Nominated for the Award for Excellence in Graduate Supervision, Queen’s University


Civil Engineering Teaching Award, Queen’s University, Dept. of Civil Engineering


Civil Engineering Teaching Award, Queen’s University, Dept. of Civil Engineering


Finalist for Frank Knox Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Alma Mater Society of Queen’s University


Civil Engineering Teaching Award, Queen’s University, Dept. of Civil Engineering


NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship


Governor General’s Academic Gold Medal, McMaster University


McMaster Nominee, NSERC Doctoral Prize (Eng. & Comp. Sci.)


McMaster Nominee, Canadian Association for Graduate Studies/University Microfilms International (CAGS/UMI) Distinguished Dissertation Award (Engineering/Medical Sciences/Natural Sciences)


1. Ariel Nunez Garcia (Postdoctoral Researcher)

Intermediate-scale testing of in-situ thermal remediation to optimize performance monitoring


2. Qianli Xie (PhD candidate)

 Modelling of mass recovery during thermal remediation using invasion percolation techniques (co-supervised by B. Kueper)


3. Madeline Calvert (MASc candidate)

Multicomponent gas-water partitioning during stray gas migration


4. Aidan McKinstry (MASc candidate)

Bubble-facilitated transport from contaminated sediments (co-supervised by R. Mulligan)


5. Liam Price (PhD candidate)

High-temperature treatment of PAHs in semi-volatile NAPL mixtures


6. Pengjie Wang (PhD candidate) 

Thermal treatment of soil and groundwater


7. Julia Barnes-James  (MASc candidate)

PFAS transport by mobilized air bubbles



Former Group Members:

  • Mitchell Davidson (MASc 2022), Stray gas migration and mass transfer in heterogeneous media
  • Justine Abraham (MASc 2021), Partitioning of PFAS to air-water interfaces of trapped bubbles in porous media
  • Cole Van De Ven (PhD 2019), Stray gas migration in shallow groundwater: gas dynamics, mass transfer, and environmental expression
  • Sumit Kalia (PhD 2020), Stochastic optimization of monitoring well placement for site investigation (co-supervised by B. Kueper)
  • Obai Mohammed (PhD 2018), Gas generation during nanoscale zero-valent iron injection
  • Eric Martin (PhD 2017), DNAPL treatment by electrical resistance heating in sand and clay (co-supervised by B. Kueper)
  • Omneya El-Sharnouby (Postdoctoral 2017-2018), PFAS sorption in fractured rock
  • Sean Bryck (Research Associate 2014-2017), Simulation and virtual investigation of complex DNAPL sites (co-supervised by B. Kueper)
  • Nicholas Ashmore (MASc 2020), Dissolution of stray gas mixtures
  • Zenith Wong (MASc 2021), Influence of dissolved gases on thermal remediation
  • Matan Freedman (MASc 2021), Principal component analysis of in situ bioremediation performance
  • Jian Wu (MASc 2019), NAPL mobilization by flowing gas bubbles in porous media
  • Caroline Wisheart (MASc 2019), Numerical modelling of gas dynamics in peatlands
  • Brianne Hicknell (MASc 2017), Laboratory investigation of heating SVOC NAPL mixtures (co-supervised by B. Kueper)
  • Zubair Hossain (MASc 2016), Dissolution of heavy oil in river gravel at high velocity
  • Ying Lei (MASc 2016), Oil droplet transport in river gravel
  • Nicole Soucy (MASc 2016), Bubble-facilitated transport of VOCs from LNAPL smear zones
  • Chris Fruetel (MASc 2016), Laboratory investigation of hyporheic flow in river gravel (co-supervised by A. da Silva)
  • Mahmudul Shojib (MASc 2015), Dissolution of trapped light non-aqueous phase liquid in the presence of trapped gas
  • Lee-Ann Sills (MASc 2015), Investigation of gas breakthrough of two-dimensional capillary barriers using transparent soil (co-supervised by G. Siemens)
  • Jonah Munholland (MASc 2014), Electrical resistance heating in heterogeneous sand (co-supervised by B. Kueper)
  • Paul Hegele (MASc 2014), Gas dynamics during electrical resistance heating
  • Cindy Zhao (MASc 2013), Laboratory investigation of thermal remediation


Master’s and PhD positions are available in the Mumford Research Group in the areas of in situ soil and groundwater remediation, bubble-facilitated contaminant transport, fate and transport of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), stray gas migration of methane, and potential impacts of subsurface hydrogen storage on groundwater quality.
Application information:
Applicants should have a background in Civil, Environmental, Chemical, or Geological Engineering, or the Geological Sciences with a strong academic record and be interested in pursuing leading research. Previous experience related to multiphase flow and environmental research is an asset, but is not essential. Interested candidates should send a cover letter, CV and transcripts to, with the subject line “Mumford research position”.
Queen’s University is located in historic Kingston, Ontario, Canada where Lake Ontario flows into the St. Lawrence River, on the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe. Queen’s University was recently ranked 1st in Canada and 5th in the world according to the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings that assess performance against the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.  Kingston is an easy drive to Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa, and is just west of the Thousand Islands. The Department of Civil Engineering is home to the Beaty Water Research Centre ( and the GeoEngineering Centre at Queen’s-RMC ( with interdisciplinary expertise in areas that cover physical and chemical research related to water, and how water affects natural and built materials and environments.

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