Title

Phytoremediation of MTBE with Hybrid Poplar Trees

Abstract

This research investigates the fate and transport of methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) in phytoremediation, particularly the uptake and volatilization of MTBE in lab-scale hydroponic systems. the research reveals that MTBE was taken up by hybrid poplar cuttings and volatilized to the atmosphere. Volatilization of MTBE occurred through both stems and leaves. the concentration of MTBE in the transpiration stream declined exponentially with height, indicating that the uptake and volatilization along the stems are an important removal mechanism of MTBE in phytoremediation. Volatilization, via diffusion from the stems, has not been directly measured previously. No volatile MTBE metabolites were detected; however, mass balance closure and metabolite detection were not primary objectives of this study. the greatest amount of MTBE in plant biomass was associated with the woody stems from the previous year's growth, owing in part to the large biomass of stems. MTBE in the plant tissues appears to reach a steady state concentration and there does not appear to be an accumulation process that could lead to highly elevated concentrations relative to the groundwater source.

Department(s)

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Sponsor(s)

National Science Foundation (U.S.)

Keywords and Phrases

Volatilization

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Bioaccumulation
Butyl methyl ether
Diffusion
Phytoremediation

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Citation

File Type

text

Language(s)

English

Rights

© 2004 Taylor & Francis, All rights reserved.


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