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A Remote and Affordable Detection System for Chromium VI in Groundwater (DOE 2003 SBIR Phase 1)
Investigator: Dr. Veronica M. Cepak, PI, 303-530-0263, eltron@eltronresearch.com
Company: Eltron Research, Inc., Boulder, CO
Contract Information: DOE Grant No. DE-FG02-03ER83646
Period of Performance:
SBIR Funds: $99,998
Abstract: Chromium (Cr) contamination represents a major problem for DOE facilities and the plating industry. Because electrochemical detection of Cr in water has been shown to be a cost-effective method for the long-term, remote monitoring of environmental contamination sites, this project will develop a robust electrochemical monitoring system for the detection of hexavalent chromium in ground water and surface water. The remote probing device will use electrochemical and microfluidic technology to enable the rapid in situ detection of chromium, and the device will be adaptable to portable surface monitoring and down-hole applications. Phase I will identify successful strategies for the fabrication of a miniaturized electrochemical detection system using microelectrode arrays and a Cr(VI) selective polymer film. Device performance for chromium detection will be characterized under a variety of possible sample conditions, especially those of interest to DOE sites. The response time, sensitivity, and detection limits of the device will be evaluated. The chromium sensor should be applicable to ground-water and surface contamination problems relevant to DOE needs, as well as EPA applications and those of the private sector, e.g., the monitoring of chromium waste in the electroplating industry. Other industries requiring wastewater monitoring of chromium include metal processing, galvanic plants, tanneries, wood preservation, chemical manufacturing, aerospace, and electronics.