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Energy and Environment Directorate

Terry Liikala

Terry Liikala

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
PO Box 999
Richland, WA 99352
(509) 372-4148


Terry Liikala is the Research Line Manager for the Subsurface Science & Technology Group at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. This group is responsible for advancing science and technology for in situ environmental characterization, monitoring, and remediation. Key sponsors include the Department of Energy, Department of Defense, the Environmental Protection Agency, and private industry.

As the Subsurface Science & Technology group manager, Terry stewards distinctive capabilities in the areas of:

  • novel approaches for addressing complex subsurface systems,
  • developing biogeochemical technologies for recalcitrant contaminant issues,
  • integrating hydrologic system analysis for in-situ applications,
  • addressing field-scale technology implementation challenges, and
  • advancing analytical capabilities for subsurface applications.

Successful outcomes include laboratory understanding and performance assessment modeling of contaminant behavior and transport, demonstration of innovative remediation approaches for the vadose zone and groundwater, and development of site-specific to national remediation guidance. He oversees 25 staff and several students as well as 12 physical, wet chemistry, radiological, and microbiological labs.

In addition to managing the Subsurface Science & Technology Group, Terry is integral to deployment of engineered systems for nuclear material detection and interdiction for the Department of Homeland Security. Prior to becoming group manager, he managed increasingly diverse and complex projects dealing with selection of alternate resins for pretreatment of high-level wastes, pipeline characterization using tracers, demonstration of novel environmental technologies, remedial investigations and feasibility studies, groundwater monitoring, and hydrogeologic characterization.

Research Interests

  • Hydrogeologic characterization
  • Soil and groundwater contamination and remediation
  • Nuclear detection and interdiction

Education and Credentials

  • M.S., University of Idaho, Hydrology, 1993
  • B.A., Washington State University, Foreign Languages and Literatures (Russian major), 1986
  • B.S., Washington State University, Geology, 1982

Affiliations and Professional Service

  • State of Washington Licensed Geologist, Hydrogeologist
  • Association of Ground Water Scientists and Engineers of the National Ground Water Association

PNNL Publications


  • Devary J.L., P.J. Bengtson, J.W. Graybeal, M.J. Truex, J.S. Fruchter, T.L. Liikala, and D.L. Greenslade. 2003. "PNNL Continues Progress in Cleanup Technology Development at DOE Labs." Environmental Business Journal XV, no. 9/10:30-31. PNNL-SA-37921.




Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas