Masters Theses


Hongwan Li


"Drywall (gypsum boards) commonly used in buildings can adsorb indoor air pollutants and release them later exposing occupants over long periods of time. Methamphetamine is a drug of abuse that contaminates building materials in many homes, including painted drywall. The objective of this study is to quantify the meth-gypsum equilibrium partition coefficient, Keq. This partition coefficient is defined as the mass of meth adsorbed per volume of gypsum per mass-concentration of gas-phase meth and has these units: (µg meth/m3 gypsum)/(µg meth/m3 air). The steady state equilibrium partition coefficient ranges from 1.1 to 3.0x105 for one drywall materials over a range of temperature (20-30⁰C) and relative humidity (19-68 %). The partition coefficient decreases as temperature and relative humidity increases while desorption rate increases as relative humidity increases. At 25⁰C and 50% RH, 4 different drywall materials exhibit a partition coefficient ranging from 1.1 to 1.8x105. Based on these results, a typical house can accumulate approximately 2g of free-base methamphetamine in drywall when equilibrated with 1ppb methamphetamine vapour in air. This is approximately 100 times the therapeutic dose for a child suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It was estimated that more than 3 months to 6 years are required for a substantial fraction of free-base methamphetamine to be released from drywall during "airing out""--Abstract, page iii.


Morrison, Glenn

Committee Member(s)

Wang, Jianmin
Reddy, Prakash


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Environmental Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Fall 2014


ix, 70 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 66-69).


© 2014 Hongwan Li, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Methamphetamine -- Environmental aspects
Partition coefficient (Chemistry)

Thesis Number

T 10585

Electronic OCLC #