Title

Seasonal Variation of Contaminant Concentrations In Planta

Presenter Information

Amanda Holmes

Department

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Major

Environmental Engineering

Research Advisor

Burken, Joel G. (Joel Gerard)

Advisor's Department

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Funding Source

Missouri S&T Opportunities for Undergraduate Research Experiences (OURE) Program; NIEHS Superfund Research Program

Abstract

Chlorinated solvents are carcinogens found frequently in the environment. Due to their location in the groundwater, detection and remediation are difficult. As plants have been shown to uptake chlorinated solvents, they have been increasingly used for site remediation and monitoring. Phytoremediation has been found to be cost-effective, easily implemented, and more ecologically friendly when compared to traditional remediation methods. In order to use trees as an effective monitoring and remediation tool, seasonal variations of chlorinated solvent concentrations in trees must be understood. In this research, sampling tools were developed to monitor chlorinated solvents in trees at Schuman Park in Rolla, MO. The proximity to the S&T labs offers a unique testing opportunity. Concentrations in the trees were found to fluctuate seasonally, with higher concentrations observed in the summer when trees were actively transpiring groundwater. Groundwater monitoring using trees holds promise as an ecological solution that is non-invasive. Compared to traditional methods, less water, electricity and equipment are required while less hazardous waste is generated.

Biography

Amanda is a freshman at Missouri S&T studying environmental engineering. She is thankful to have had the opportunity to participate in research under Dr. Joel Burken since she was in high school. In addition to research, Amanda is involved in the Chancellor’s Leadership Academy, Honors Academy, Global Bridges Club, International Conversation Partners, and is a pre-school Sunday school teacher at her local church. Participating in research at Missouri S&T has been an invaluable experience for Amanda. The chance to apply concepts learned in the classroom to real-world situations has helped her understand science and the world around her on a deeper level.

Research Category

Engineering

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Document Type

Poster

Award

Engineering poster session, First place

Location

Upper Atrium/Hallway

Presentation Date

10 Apr 2012, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

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Apr 10th, 1:00 PM Apr 10th, 3:00 PM

Seasonal Variation of Contaminant Concentrations In Planta

Upper Atrium/Hallway

Chlorinated solvents are carcinogens found frequently in the environment. Due to their location in the groundwater, detection and remediation are difficult. As plants have been shown to uptake chlorinated solvents, they have been increasingly used for site remediation and monitoring. Phytoremediation has been found to be cost-effective, easily implemented, and more ecologically friendly when compared to traditional remediation methods. In order to use trees as an effective monitoring and remediation tool, seasonal variations of chlorinated solvent concentrations in trees must be understood. In this research, sampling tools were developed to monitor chlorinated solvents in trees at Schuman Park in Rolla, MO. The proximity to the S&T labs offers a unique testing opportunity. Concentrations in the trees were found to fluctuate seasonally, with higher concentrations observed in the summer when trees were actively transpiring groundwater. Groundwater monitoring using trees holds promise as an ecological solution that is non-invasive. Compared to traditional methods, less water, electricity and equipment are required while less hazardous waste is generated.