The Superfund Basic Research Program (SBRP), in collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), presents "Nanotechnology - Metal Remediation" the 2nd session of the 2007 edition of Risk-e-Learning "Nanotechnology: Applications and Implications for Superfund." This session will highlight the potential of nanotechnology-based approaches to remove metals from drinking water.
Dr. Mason Tomson, Professor of Chemical and Environmental Engineering (Rice University, Houston, TX) will introduce the use of nano-magnetite to remove arsenic from drinking water. Nano-magnetite has been found to be a good adsorbent for arsenate and arsenite. Dr. Tomson overviews results from research at the Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology in collaboration with Drs. Vicki Colvin and Paul Laibinis. The research covered 1) kinetic studies with arsenate and arsenite to various concentrations of nano-magnetite were conducted by a batch process under controlled conditions, 2) the effect of competing ions (chloride, phosphate, sulfate, silica, and bicarbonate) on arsenic adsorption onto nano-magnetite, 3) comparison of nano-magnetite, nano-magnetite and iron, and iron for arsenic adsorption. These three processes were tested on arsenic contaminated water from Brownsville, TX - all achieved the treatment goal in less than one minute with minimum iron residue.
Dr. Shas Mattigod, Senior Research Scientist (Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA), will introduce his research using functionalized nanoporous ceramic sorbents for removal of mercury and other contaminants. This talk overviews the synthesis of self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous silica (SAMMS) and describes how functionalized surface chemistry can be used for adsorption of particular metal species of mercury, chromium and arsenic. He will also discuss possible application of SAMMS technology to separate actinides from nuclear wastes. Dr. Mattigod will cover treatment costs, waste form stability, and potential applications and commercialization of this approach.