Seminars

SPRING semester 2019

 

Location:
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Rolla, MO 65409
*changes noted below
Time:
3:30 - 4:30 p.m.
*changes noted below


Speakers & Dates:

 

  • Lina Zhang  | Wednesday September 4
  • Lab Safety Training | Wednesday September 25 | 120 Butler-Carlton Hall | 3-4pm
  • Arumugam Manthiram | Monday October 21 | G3 Schrenk Hall | 4pm | Chemistry/CREE
  • Diane McKnight | Tuesday October 22 | 125 Butler-Carlton Hall | 3-3:55pm | Biological Sciences/CArEE/CREE
  • Damon Hall | Wednesday October 30
  • Yang Wang | Wednesday November 13

 

Questions?

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Archive of seminars

2019 Seminars

Rapid Measurements of Aerosol Size Distribution and Hygroscopic Growth with a Fast Integrated Mobility Spectrometer (FIMS)

Yang Wang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology
Rolla, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday November 13, 2019
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Aerosol size distribution and hygroscopicity are among key parameters in determining the impact of atmospheric aerosols on global radiation and climate change. In situ submicron aerosol size distribution measurements commonly involve a scanning mobility particle sizer (SMPS). The SMPS scanning time is in the scale of minutes, which is often too slow to capture the variation of aerosol size distribution, such as for aerosols formed via nucleation processes or measurements onboard research aircraft. To solve this problem, a Fast Integrated Mobility Spectrometer (FIMS) based on image processing was developed for rapid measurements of aerosol size distributions from 10 to 600 nm. The FIMS uses a high speed CCD camera to measure the condensationally grown particles, and the collected images provide both aerosol concentration and position, which directly relate to the aerosol size distribution. The parallel comparison between the FIMS and SMPS demonstrated excellent agreement when measuring aerosols with various size spectra, but by simultaneously measuring aerosols with different sizes, the FIMS provides aerosol size spectra nearly 100 times faster than the SMPS.

Recent deployment onboard research aircraft demonstrated that the FIMS is capable of measuring aerosol size distributions in 1s, thereby offering a great advantage in applications requiring high time resolution. In addition, the coupling of the FIMS with other conventional aerosol instruments provides orders of magnitude more rapid characterization of aerosol optical and microphysical properties. For example, the combination of a differential mobility analyzer, a relative humidity control unit, and a FIMS was used to measure aerosol hygroscopic growth. Such a system reduced the time of measuring the hygroscopic properties of submicron aerosols (six sizes) to less than three minutes in total, with an error within 1%.

Biography:
Yang Wang is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology. He obtained his Ph.D. degree from the Department of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis in 2017, and B.S. degree from the Department of Thermal Engineering at Tsinghua University in 2012. Between 2017 and 2019, he was a postdoctoral research associate at Brookhaven National Laboratory. His research focuses on aerosol instrumentation, high-temperature aerosol measurement, and functional nanoparticle synthesis. He worked on a fast-integrated mobility spectrometer (FIMS) that measures aerosol size distributions every 1 s, and high-resolution differential mobility analyzers (HR-DMAs) that measure particles with sizes down to 1 nm. He also evaluated and developed portable particle sensors for air quality monitoring. Yang has authored and co-authored 28 peer-reviewed publications and is the Outstanding Reviewer of the Journal of Aerosol Science. He is the recipient of the GAeF PhD Award during the 2019 European Aerosol Conference.

Engaging Experts in Water Policy & Sustainability Decision Making

Damon M. Hall, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
School of Natural Resources
Department of Biomedical, Biological & Chemical Engineering
University of Missouri
Columbia, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday October 30, 2019
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Water is a shared resource held in trust for the use of a state’s citizenry; its management obliges the involvement of water users. US states have much discretion concerning how to accomplish this. In state water planning, a variety of activities are considered stakeholder engagement. Natural resource management agencies often treat public participation as a chore for attaining legitimacy whose resources might be better used for technical aspects of planning. This talk details the public participation design for the 2015 Montana State Water Plan’s Yellowstone Basin scoping phase as informed by the emerging field of sustainability science. It argues that the design of participatory practices is the key variable for successful participation. Stakeholders are experts whose knowledge can be incorporated into planning to inform priorities, corroborate biophysical data, and supply insights for communicating science and policy to citizens across specific localities. Public buy-in (legitimation) is not the objective of stakeholder participation; however, it can be a by-product of good design which suits the context and effectively uses citizen input to improve decision making.

Biography:
Hall joins Mizzou from Saint Louis University, where he was an assistant professor in the Department of Biology and Center for Sustainability. He was hired as part of the College of Engineering’s Pillars of Pursuit cluster “Sustainability inFEWSed (Food, Energy, Water, Smart Cities).” His research examines interactions between social and ecological systems where science, policy and culture meet. His work involves stakeholders in environmental policy and sustainability planning. At Mizzou, he heads the Sustainability Science Lab, which includes projects in water resources planning, urban pollinator conservation and communicating social-ecological systems models. Hall has received grants from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the National Science Foundation and the Missouri Department of Conservation. He has received a teaching honor from Saint Louis University and a partnership award from the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation. He completed a PhD in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences as a Boone & Crockett PhD Fellow in Conservation Policy at Texas A&M University. He holds a M.A. in Communication and a B.S. in Natural Resources both from Purdue University. He completed a NSF-supported Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Maine's Sustainability Solutions Initiative, an EPSCoR-funded project to advance Sustainability Science. He teaches undergraduate courses in Sustainability and graduate courses in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. His research can be found here: http://www.SustainabilityScienceLab.org/

Trouble Ahead, Trouble Behind:  Acid Mine Drainage and Climate Change in the Rocky Mountains

Diane McKnight
University of Colorado
2019 - AEESP Lecturer

3:00 p.m.
Tuesday October 22, 2019
125 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
In the Rocky Mountain watersheds, weathering of disseminated pyrite in the country rock and in mining workings generates acidic, metal-enriched water that drains into streams and rivers. This overall process is referred to as acid rock drainage (ARI)). ARD is a long-term and pervasive environmental problem in the Rocky Mountains and the Sierras, which provide water supply for communities and agriculture throughout the south western US. Contamination has not abated since the mining boom ended about 70 years ago, largely because these contaminants are continuously generated from the exposure to oxygen of pyrite in the mine workings and tailings. A study in an ARD stream system that drains into Dillon Reservoir, a water supply for Denver, Colorado, has found that acidity and concentrations of metals and rare earth elements have been steadily increasing in the summer and fall over the past several decades. Another trend is that mountain resorts have been pursuing a "four seasons resort" approach to adapt to changing climate, and less reliable winter snowpack for skiing. ARD thwarts these plans by constraining the use of stream water for snowmaking and impacting summer recreation, such as fishing and rafting. One issue for state and federal agencies and watershed stakeholders' groups is determining which of the many abandoned mines in a catchment are the main ARD sources, and which of these are suitable for remediation. Addressing the ARD problem in mountain catchments will require a convergent research approach that integrates understanding of hydrology, water quality and aquatic ecosystem processes within a regulatory and water resources framework.

Next-generation Battery Technologies

Arumugam Manthiram, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Materials Science and Engineering Program
Texas Materials Institute
The University of Texas at Austin

4:00 p.m.
Monday October 21, 2019
G3 Schrenk Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Rapid increase in global energy use and growing environmental concerns have prompted the development of clean, sustainable, alternative energy technologies. Renewable energy sources like solar and wind are a promising solution, but electrical energy storage (EES) is critical to efficiently utilize them as they are intermittent. EES is also the only viable near-term option for transportation. Rechargeable batteries are prime candidates for EES, but their widespread adoption for electric vehicles and grid electricity storage requires optimization of cost, cycle life, safety, energy density, power density, and environmental impact, all of which are directly linked to severe materials challenges. After providing a brief account of the current status, this presentation will focus on the development of advanced
materials and new battery chemistries. Specifically, lithium-based batteries based on low-cobalt oxide and sulfur cathodes and interdigitated alloy anodes will be presented. The challenges of bulk and surface instability and chemical crossover during charge-discharge cycling, advanced characterization methodologies to develop an in-depth understanding, and approaches to overcome the challenges will be presented.

Biography:
Arumugam Manthiram is currently the Cockrell Family Regents Chair in Engineering and Director of the Texas Materials Institute and the Materials Science and Engineering Program at the University of Texas at Austin (UT-Austin). He received his Ph.D. degree in chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras in 1981. After working as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oxford and at UT-Austin with Professor John Goodenough, he became a faculty member in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at UTAustin in 1991. Dr. Manthiram’s research is focused on clean energy technologies: rechargeable batteries, fuel cells, and supercapacitors. He has authored more than 760 journal articles with 57,000 citations and an h-index of 121. He directs a large research group with about 30 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Dr. Manthiram is an elected fellow of six professional societies: Materials Research Society, Electrochemical Society, American Ceramic Society, Royal Society of Chemistry, American Association for the Advancement of Science, and World Academy of Materials and Manufacturing Engineering. He is also an elected member of the World Academy of Ceramics. He received the university-wide (one per year) Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award in 2012, the Battery Division Research Award from the Electrochemical Society in 2014, the Distinguished Alumnus Award of the Indian Institute of Technology Madras in 2015, the Billy and Claude R. Hocott Distinguished Centennial Engineering Research Award in 2016, and the Da Vinci Award in 2017. He is a Web of Science Highly Cited Researcher in 2017 and 2018.

Green conversion of sustainable polymers

Lina Zhang
Professor and Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences
College of Chemistry and Molecular Sciences,
Wuhan University, China

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday September 4, 2019
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
In this presentation Professor Zhang will present a novel NaOH/urea solvent to dissolve cellulose, chitin and polyaniline (PANI) at low temperature. From this solution fibers, films, microspheres, plastics, hydrogels and aerogels can be fabricated. Importantly, the produced multifilament fiber via physical methods features a nanofibril structure and exhibits excellent properties in mechanical strength, self-healable ability, force-response sensitively, magnetic-induced delivery, etc. The relationship between the fiber structure and these properties was revealed. These materials have promising applications in biomedical, energy storage, green catalyst, wastewater treatment, and textile manufacturing that will lead to a sustainable society.

Biography:
Professor Lina Zhang works in the College of Chemistry and Molecular Sciences, Wuhan University, China. She serves as an Associate Editor for ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering, and on Editorial boards of Journals of Cellulose, Journal of Applied Polymer Science, etc. Professor Zhang has established the Natural Polymers and Polymer Physics group at Wuhan University in 1993, and pioneered low temperature technologies to dissolve intransigent macromolecules and fabricate novel materials via "green" methods. Professor Zhang has published 16 books and more than 600 papers. She became the first Chinese scientist receiving Anselme Payen Award of ACS in 2011. She also received a Second-place National Nature Science Prize of China (2012), developed over 100 patents, and recognized as a National Excellent Woman Inventor (2002). Professor Zhang was elected as an Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2011 and Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2014.

Crossflow Microfiltration of Oil from synthetic Produced water using Multichannel Ceramic Membrane

Yousef Alanezi, Ph.D.
Visiting Research Scholar
Chemical Engineering Technology, CTS, PAAET, Kuwait

Chemical & Biochemical Engineering, Missouri University Science and Technology

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday May 1, 2019
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Produced water is formed in underground formations and brought up to the surface along with crude oil during production. It considered by far the largest volume by-product or waste stream. The most popular preference to deal with produced water is to re-inject it back into the formation. Produced water re-injection (PWRI) needs a modified treatment before injection to achieve better results. Usually it estimated that oil wells in the west of Kuwait produce 15 to 40 % of produced water. The main aim of this treatment train is reduce not only the oil-in-water amount to less than 10 ppm but also total suspended solids to 5 ppm, which is the maximum allowable concentration for re-injection and disposal. Furthermore, with respect to the upper limit for injection, the number of particles between 5 to 8 microns is 200 in 0.1 ml. In practice, the number is found to exceed these limits by 10 times. Hence, crossflow microfiltration of oil from synthetic produced water studied experimentally under various operating conditions using a tubular multi-channel ceramic membrane. Crossflow velocities, oil concentrations, and ionic strength variation effects on equilibrium permeate flux were investigated.  An increase in crossflow velocity for oil emulsions caused an increase in the equilibrium permeate flux. In contrast, as feed oil concentrations increased from 300 to 2400 ppm, equilibrium permeate fluxes were decreased.  Likewise, when the ionic strength for the feed emulsions was increased by addition NaCl salt, the permeate flux declined. While, as the ionic strength increased by addition of CaCl2 and FeCl3, the permeate flux increased. These different observations are discussed in term of the hydrodynamics and particle interactions in relation to the filtration process.

Biography:
Dr Yousef is an assistant Professor at Chemical Engineering Technology, CTS, PAAET, Kuwait. He joined Missouri University S&T as research scholar visitor in September 2018. He earned his PhD. in Chemical Engineering from Loughborough University, UK. Early in his career as worked a chemical engineer as inspector engineer for Desalination MSF plant. In addition, he worked for Petrochemical Company as daily production specialist for Ethylene Glycol Unit.     

Hydrology in the Anthropocene

Nitin Singh, Ph.D.
Post-Doctoral
Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology
Rolla, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday April 10, 2019
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
In the face of climate change, there is a need for novel frameworks and robust methods to address environmental issues. The first part of the presentation aims to highlight the role of nature based solutions (e.g., green infrastructures) in solving water quantity and water quality issues. Here, I will share a unique framework that integrates an ecosystem services model with optimization algorithms to demonstrate the efficacy of wetlands in improving water quality at the regional scale. Further, I will show the potential of floodplains in minimizing flooding at the river network scale. The second part of the presentation focuses on the importance of causality analysis in revealing the controls of groundwater depletion over five decades. Here, I will show that correlation does not necessarily mean causation and one must exercise caution while making use of correlations to understand relationships between variables.

Biography:
Nitin is currently a post-doctoral research associate at GGPE. His research focuses on understanding the influence of global change and catchment characteristic on water quantity and quality of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. He recently completed his PhD in catchment hydrology and biogeochemistry at North Carolina State University, NC. His research interests include catchment hydrology, biogeochemistry, fluvial geomorphology, ecosystem services, and land-atmospheric interactions.  For more information, please see Nitin’s website: http://nksingh01.wix.com/nitinsingh.

Agent-Based Simulation of the Electrical Power Market

Gasser Galal Ali
Ph.D. Student
Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology
Rolla, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday March 13, 2019
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
In 2003, the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission proposed the Wholesale Power Market Platform (WPMP). Within such platform, the operation of wholesale power markets is regulated by Independent System Operators (ISO) - or Regional Transmission Organizations (RTO) - through using Locational Marginal Price (LMP). The proposed framework was implemented in New England, the Midwest, and other locations. A framework, titled Agent-based Modeling of Electricity System (AMES), was developed to simulate the WPMP processes. However, with the increasing adoption of distributed solar generation (DSG) and the continuously decreasing cost of installation, the price of electricity is expected to increase due to decreasing demand for power from the grid. This will convince more residents to install DSG. Under those evolving circumstances, forecasting the behavior of the market, and the future demand for electrical power becomes inaccurate. To this end, the goal of this research is to investigate the effect of the adoption of Distributed Energy Resources (DER), specifically Distributed Solar Generation (DSG) on the power market. While this research will be applied on the electric grid in Tennessee, the utilized tools are broad enough to be adapted at various other locations both nationally and internationally. Accordingly, a prototype framework was developed to modify the AMES model. The objective is to match the characteristics of the service area for the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) including the associated stakeholders as well as market structure and operation. This will help answer many questions related to the cost of investment into DSG both at the generation and resident sides. Current results indicate that decreased load demand due to the adoption of DSG will affect high-cost generators more than lower-cost generating units. When complete, this research will simulate the effect of the adoption of DSG in the TVA area, and enable forecasting of the behavior of the market, and experimentation with regulations and incentives affecting DER and DSG. This research will benefit municipalities, governmental agencies, and power companies in decision making to respond to the increasing penetration of DER.

Biography:
Gasser Galal Ali is a first year PhD student in Dr. Islam El-adaway’s research group at Missouri University of Science and Technology. He received his MSc and BSc degrees from The American University in Cairo. He has broad skillset  and interest in computer modeling and simulation, computational intelligence, optimization, and statistical analysis.

Applications of Zintl Phases for Direct Thermal to Electrical Energy

Susan Kauzlarich, Ph.D.
Distinguished Professor
Department of Chemistry
University of California,Davis

4:15 p.m.
Monday March 4, 2019
G3 Schrenk Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
There are many areas of science where progress is materials limited.  The synthesis and identification of new compounds that can lead to enhancements in existing technologies, or serve as the basis of revolutionary new technologies, is essential for developing new and improved technologies.  Zintl compounds can be described by a combination of ionic and covalent bonding, composed of electropositive cations which donate electrons to the more electronegative components that utilize the electrons to form vaious bonding motifs.  My group has focused on Zintl compounds for their structural, chemical, and electronic properties and I will present research on Zintl Phases for thermoelectric applications such as waste heat to electrical power conversion.

Biography:
Susan Kauzlarich has obtained her BS degree in 1980 from the College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA, and a PhD degree in 1985 from Michigan State University. After two years of post-doctoral study at Iowa State University she took up a position of Assistant professor in Chemistry in UC, Davis and was promoted to the rank of professor in 1996. Currently Prof. Kauzlarich is a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, University of California, Davis. She has led the department of Chemistry at UC, Davis from 2013 to 2016 and developed new materials chemistry courses in undergraduate chemistry majors. She was actively involved in developing a completely new general chemistry course that integrated lectures and laboratory components, which improved the critical learning of the students. She is a strong proponent for the involvement of under-represented minorities in science and actively involved in UC Davis Affirmative Action Committee, CAMPOS (the Center for Advancing Multicultural Perspectives on Science) and ACS SEED program. Beyond leadership Prof. Kauzlarich has been an extremely well-known scientist in the field of Materials and Solid State Chemistry. She has published more than 290 articles in peer-reviewed journals with more than 12,000 citations and an h-index of 61. She is a fellow of American Chemical Society (ACS) and American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She has organized Gordon Research Conference in solid state Chemistry. Currently she is the chair-elect of AAAS (chemistry section). She was an associate editor of Journal of Solid State Chemistry (2000 -2005) and a current associate editor of Chemistry of Materials, a flagship journal of ACS.

Consequences of Simulated Anoxia and Algae Induced Eutrophication on Metal Release in Lake Coeur d’Alene

James Moberly, Ph.D., P.E.
Assistant Professor
Chemical and Materials Engineering
University of Idaho

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday February 28, 2019
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
The Coeur d’Alene River (CDAR) system in northern Idaho encompasses a series of biologically productive and diverse lateral lakes and wetlands, including Coeur d’Alene Lake (CDAL), which have been impacted by decades of mining operations within the Coeur d’Alene mining district. It is hypothesized that metal contamination is currently masking a potential nutrient problem by suppressing photosynthetic microorganism and that as a consequence of positive steps that are being made to reduce the metal loading to the system, CDAL may experience increased eutrophication events induced by algae blooms that would have an unknown impact on legacy contaminants within the Lake.  Our research group measured temporal and spatial dynamics of heavy metals, nutrients, and microbial communities from intact CDAL sediment cores over an eight-week period under induced anoxia and algae amended samples. This talk will focus on the potential impacts of algal blooms and anoxia on CDAL through the lens of this study.

Biography:
Dr. James Moberly is an Assistant Professor within the Department of Chemical & Materials Engineering at the University of Idaho. He received his bachelor’s from University of Idaho, master’s from Washington State University, and doctorate at Montana State University, all in Chemical Engineering. His post-doctoral work at Oak Ridge National Lab focused on biogeochemical transformation of mercury and microbial community interactions. Dr. Moberly continued his career as an environmental consultant before transitioning to faculty at UI. He has been examining heavy metal fate and transport within the Coeur d’Alene system (off and on) for nearly fifteen years. His research focuses on discovering how microorganisms or their bioproducts can be applied to solve complex interdisciplinary engineering and environmental problems, improve human health, and increase accessibility to high-quality water sources. 

2018 Seminars

Capacitive/Electrokinetic Processes for Water Purification and Protection of Groundwater

Sanjay Tewari, Ph.D.
Assistant Teaching Professor
Environmental Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology
Cooperative Engineering, Springfield MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday November 28, 2018
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Electrochemical processes such as electrokinetic (EK) and capacitive deionization (CDI) are increasingly being used for water treatment and protection of water sources, especially groundwater. The basic principle in both processes is same – applying electrical potential to control movement of charged species in water and/or water-rich soil/sand environment. Recently, CDI has been used in small-scale water purification units requiring low energy. Various parameters such as effective electrode surface area, separation distance of electrodes, applied DC voltage, and contact time have been studied extensively. The mass and size of target ions play some role the way these ions behave in CDI but their charge (valences) dominates their behavior in CDI. The recent research has been focused on surface modification of electrodes and the way these electrodes are arranged. In latest experiments, carbon aerogel fiber-paper based electrodes were subjected to nitric acid treatment and gold deposition. The performance of each electrode was assessed based on their adsorption capacities in four different configurations (two symmetric and two asymmetric). The highest salt removal capacity in this study was 8.0 mg of NaCl per g of electrode in asymmetric electrodes configuration with the gold-deposited electrode used as anode and untreated/uncoated electrode used as cathode. The research on CDI and EK is on-going with promising results. The electrokinetic barriers are being evaluated against salt-water intrusion in groundwater in laboratory conditions. The preliminary results point to effectiveness of these barriers.

Biography:
Dr. Tewari is an Assistant Teaching Professor in Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering at the Missouri University of Science & Technology and is actively working with Cooperative Engineering Program located in Springfield, MO. Prior to joining Missouri S&T, he worked as an Assistant Professor at Louisiana Tech University. Dr. Tewari has taught classes focused on environmental engineering, water resources engineering, fluid mechanics and engineering surveying. He earned his Bachelor of Engineering (Civil Engineering) from National Institute of Technology, Surat and Master of Technology (Chemical Engineering) from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee in India before attending Texas A&M University where he earned his Doctor of Philosophy in Civil (Environmental) Engineering. His research efforts are focused on drinking water quality and issues related to wastewater treatment using physical, chemical and electro-chemical/kinetic processes. His recent research efforts have been in the area of application of geographic information systems to environmental management and sustainability, soil salinity and corrosion of metal pipes. Dr. Tewari also has keen interest in STEM education, improving diversity in STEM areas, inclusion of hands-on and digital tools in engineering curriculum.

Environmental Fate of Emerging Biopesticides from Genetically Modified Crops

Kimberly Parker, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering
Washington University
St. Louis, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday November 14, 2018
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
A primary goal of environmental chemistry and engineering is to characterize the impact of agricultural practices on human and ecosystem health. Currently, our agricultural sector is undergoing a revolution due to the ongoing development and adoption of agricultural biotechnology, which necessitates new approaches for effective ecological risk assessment of agricultural products and practices. For example, biopesticides produced in the tissue of genetically modified crops may pose different risks than conventional synthetic pesticides. In this seminar, Dr. Parker will provide a brief overview of the major advances and trends in agricultural biotechnology and her perspectives on what environmental chemists and engineers can contribute to this ongoing conversation. She will present her research on the environmental fate of novel double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) biopesticides produced by next-generation “RNA interference” (RNAi) crops. To enable this research, her group is developing approaches to accurately quantify dsRNA biopesticides in agricultural soils and other environmental media. Using these approaches, her group is advancing a process-focused understanding of the transport and degradation of dsRNA biopesticides in environmental system. By assessing the environmental fate of dsRNA biopesticides, this work contributes necessary data for the ecological risk assessment of next-generation RNAi crop protection biotechnology.

Biography:
Dr. Kimberly Parker is an assistant professor of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis. Her research explores environmental organic chemistry in agriculture, energy production, and aqueous systems. She earned her PhD at Stanford University, where she was supported by the Abel Wolman Fellowship (American Water Works Association), the Gerald J. Lieberman Fellowship (from Stanford for excellence in teaching), and the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. She was then awarded a Marie Curie Individual Fellowship (European Commission) to conduct research at ETH Zurich (Switzerland) prior to joining the faculty at Washington University. Her research has been recognized with honors including the Best Science Paper of the Year published in Environmental Science & Technology (2016) and the Paul V. Roberts/AEESP Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award (2017).

Constructed wetlands to manage agricultural contamination

Nadège Oustriere, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday October 24, 2018
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Bordeaux area, France, is one of the largest wine producers in the world. With this intensive activity comes agricultural contamination of the environment. Copper-based fungicide used in vineyards generates significant amounts of Cu contaminated effluents (2,500,000 L year-1). Spreading of residual diluted effluent on fields is authorized by the EU legislation and contributes to locally increased total soil Cu above the inquiry threshold values in topsoils. However, to avoid such unnecessary spreading, one option is to “rhizofiltrate” this effluent in constructed wetlands (CW). These CW are ecotechnological wastewater treatment systems where aquatic vegetation forms filters by their dense interwoven roots and rhizomes. Here, we investigate the ability of different species of macrophytes local from the Bordeaux region to clean up Cu-­­­­contaminated effluents. This allowed us to select the most relevant species to be planted in a CW. In a second time we created a pilot-scale CW, easy to reproduce in vineyards, and able to rhizofiltrate Cu-contaminated effluents. In these CW units, copper removal peaked within the first 48 hours. The effluent met the requirement for indirect discharge of chemical industry effluents in sanitary sewer systems. The next step is to test this CW directly in vineyards.

Biography:
Dr. Nadège Oustriere joined Dr. Burken’s research group last spring, in the department of Environmental Engineering at Missouri University of Science & Technology. She is a post-doc fellow and she is mainly working on mine reclamation. She earned her PhD at Bordeaux University, France, in ecology and ecotoxicology in 2016.

Closing the Knowing/Doing Gap

Glen T. Daigger, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE, NAE
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Michigan,
Ann Arbor, Michigan

3:30 p.m.
Friday October 19, 2018
120 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Factors such as population and economic growth, resource scarcity, and climate change have created a time of “reinvention” for urban water management. Responses include the “One Water” concept where water managed in an integrated fashion within the urban area, rather than as separate “stove pipes”, and the blossoming interest in resource recovery from the used water stream. This is leading to dramatic changes in approaches to urban water management, and rapid advances in new and improved technologies to advance the objectives  underlying  these  over-arching trends. These dramatic changes also necessitate changes in professional practice to recognize the developmental nature of technologies which must be evaluated and either implemented today or allowed for in plans and designs, and the significant changes in the supporting infrastructure which will enable these new approaches. Understanding the life-cycle of technology development, including the importance of learning curves, when evaluating evolving technologies; using risk and opportunity analysis as a formal step in options analysis; and including visioning and scenario analysis as regularly used components of professional practice become essential components of professional practice if we are to  seize  the  potential  opportunities  before us. Right now a significant gap exists between what we “know” we can do and what we are actually “doing”. Available and developing approaches to plan and implement evolutionary and adaptable urban water management infrastructure will then be discussed.

Biography:
Dr. Glen T. Daigger is currently Professor of Engineering Practice at the University of Michigan and President and Founder of One Water Solutions, LLC, a water engineering and innovation firm. He previously served as Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for CH2M HILL where he was employed for 35 years, and as Professor and Chair of Environmental Systems Engineering at Clemson University. Actively engaged in the water profession through major projects, and as author or co-author of more than 100 technical papers, four books, and several technical manuals, he contributes to significantly advance practice within the water profession. He has advised many of the major cities of the world, including New York, Los Angles, San Francisco, Singapore, Hong Kong, Istanbul, and Beijing. The recipient of numerous awards, including the Kappe, Freese, and Feng lectures and the Harrison Prescott Eddy, Morgan, and the Gascoigne Awards, he is a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, a Distinguished Fellow of IWA, and a Fellow of the Water Environment Federation. A member of a number of professional societies, Dr. Daigger is Past President of IWA and a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineers.

Mapping Groundwater from Afar: Unlocking New Information with Satellites and Airborne Geophysics

Ryan Smith, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering
Missouri University of Science and Technology

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday October 10, 2018
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
California’s recent decade-long drought caused severe groundwater depletion in the San Joaquin Valley, an important agricultural region where ~10% of the nation’s produce is grown. A few snapshots of this groundwater depletion was observed with InSAR, an advanced satellite method that can measure cm-scale fluctuations of the land surface related to groundwater fluxes. Modeling the relationship between subsidence and groundwater depletion is challenging, because so much subsurface information is required to do so accurately. Here, we integrate multiple geological and geophysical datasets with InSAR to build accurate models that characterize groundwater depletion during the drought. This allows us to extract more useful hydrogeological information from these datasets, providing water managers with tools to map and model deformation due to changes in the groundwater system, as well as its impacts on groundwater storage and quality.

Biography:
Dr. Ryan Smith joined the Geological Engineering program at Missouri S&T this fall as an Assistant Professor. He earned his Ph.D. at Stanford University in Geophysics in 2018, and his B.S. in Geology at Brigham Young University, Utah in 2014. Dr. Smith is a remote sensing hydrologist. He studies water resources by combining satellite, airborne and ground-based geophysical datasets, using both physics-based models and machine learning techniques.

Drones, aircraft and an inflatable banana, A quick review of Manchester

Paul Williams, Ph.D.
Research Fellow
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Manchester
University, UK

3:30 p.m.
Tuesday September 4, 2018
318 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
The Centre for Atmospheric Science (CAS) at the University of Manchester has many research activities ranging from fundamental SOA production in its photochemical environmental chamber, to large scale ambient air quality programs in India and China. The talk will give an overview of the activities, focusing on some of the key work including recent advances in quantifying methane fluxes from landfill sites using drones, development of regulatory emissions measurements from large gas turbine engines and the work on black carbon.

Biography:
Paul I. Williams is a research fellow at the University of Manchester. He works in the School of Earth and Environmental Science, within the Centre for Atmospheric research group. His roll is funded by the National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) as an Aerosol Instrument Scientist. His main activities involve maintaining the suite of particle characterisation equipment at Manchester and deploying the equipment as part of the group's research activities. He runs a short course in Practical Aerosol Science, sponsored by TSI Ltd, which teaches participants the theory and practical elements to aerosol measurement. 

 He will be bringing the banana. 

Cardiovascular effects of ambient PM2.5: The roles of particle compositions and source categories

Lung-Chi Chen, Ph.D.
Professor

Director of Inhalation Facility,
Deptartment of Environmental Medicine
New York University School of Medicine
Web:
http://www.med.nyu.edu/biosketch/lcc4

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday April 25, 2018
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Particulate matter, an ambient air criteria pollutant, is a complex mixture of chemical components. We conducted four studies as part of HEI’s integrated National Particle Component Toxicity (NPACT) Initiative research program. Data from the Chemical Speciation Net- work (CSN) enabled us to conduct a limited time-series epidemiologic study of short-term morbidity and mortality; and a study of the associations between long-term average pollutant concentrations and annual mortality. We also conducted a series of 6-month subchronic inhalation exposure studies (6 hours/day, 5 days/week) of PM2.5 concentrated 10X from ambient air (CAPs) with apolipoprotein E–deficient (ApoE-/-) mice (a mouse model of atherosclerosis). The CAPs studies were conducted in five different U.S. airsheds (New York City; Tuxedo, NY; East Lansing Michigan; Seattle Washington; Irvine, California); we measured the daily mass concentrations of PM2.5, black carbon (BC), and 16 elemental components in order to identify their sources and their roles in eliciting both short- and long-term health-related responses. In addition, from the same five airsheds we collected samples of coarse (PM10–2.5), fine (PM2.5–0.2), and ultrafine (PM0.2) particles. Aliquots of these samples were administered to cells in vitro and to mouse lungs in vivo (by aspiration) in order to determine their comparative acute effects.

Overall, the studies have demonstrated that the toxicity of PM is driven by a complex interaction of particle size range, geographic location, source category, and season. Across all studies, fossil-fuel combustion source categories were most consistently associated with both short- and long- term adverse effects of PM2.5 exposure. The components that originate from the Residual Oil Combustion and Traffic source categories were most closely associated with short-term effects; and components from the Coal Combustion category were more closely associated with long-term effects.

The results of these complementary studies, and the overall integrative analyses, provide a basis for guiding future research and for helping to determine more targeted emission controls for the PM components most hazardous to acute and chronic health. Application of the knowledge gained in this work may therefore contribute to an optimization of the public health benefits of future PM emission controls.

Key Interests:
Nanoparticle Toxicity and functional utilization, The role of health disparity in air pollution-induced cardiopulmonary diseases, Gene-environment interactions in environmentally induced diseases, Effects of particulate air pollution in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, Mechanisms of air pollution induced asthma, Pollutant-induced alterations in biological response modifiers and associated membrane receptors, Signal transductionpathways associated with oxidative stress. 

Nanotechnology-Enabled Water Treatment:  A Vision to Enable Decentralized Water Treatment and Address Growing Challenges of the Water Energy Nexus

Pedro J.J. Alvarez, Ph.D.
George R. Brown Professor
Civil & Environmental Engineering
Rice University
Houston, TX

2:00 p.m.
Thursday April 12, 2018
125 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Through control over material size, morphology and chemical structure, nanotechnology offers novel materials that are nearly “all surface” and that can be more reactive per atom than bulk materials. Such engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) can offer superior catalytic, adsorptive, optical, quantum, electrical and/or antimicrobial properties that enable multi-functional technology platforms for next-generation water treatment. This presentation will address emerging opportunities for nanotechnology to improve the selectivity and efficiency to remove priority pollutants, decrease electrical energy requirements, and meet a growing need for safer and more affordable decentralized water treatment and reuse. Because water is by far the largest waste stream of the energy industry, we will also discuss technological innovation to enable produced water reuse in remote (off-grid) oil and gas fields, to minimize freshwater withdrawal and disposal challenges. Examples of applicable nano-enabled technologies include fouling-resistant membranes with embedded ENMs that allow for self-cleaning and repair; capacitive deionization with highly conductive and selective electrodes to remove multivalent ions that precipitate or cause scaling; rapid magnetic separation using superparamagnetic nanoparticles; solar-thermal processes enabled by nanophotonics to desalinate with membrane distillation; disinfection and advanced oxidation using nanocatalysts; and nanostructured surfaces that discourage microbial adhesion and protect infrastructure against biofouling and corrosion. We envision using these enabling technologies to develop compact modular water treatment systems that are easy to deploy and can treat challenging waters to protect human lives and support sustainable economic development.

Biography:
Pedro J.J. Alvarez is the George R. Brown Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Rice University, where he also serves as Director of the NSF ERC on Nanotechnology-Enabled Water Treatment (NEWT). His research interests include environmental implications and applications of nanotechnology, bioremediation, fate and transport of toxic chemicals, water footprint of biofuels, water treatment and reuse, and antibiotic resistance control. Pedro received the B. Eng. Degree in Civil Engineering from McGill University and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Environmental Engineering from the University of Michigan. He is the 2012 Clarke Prize laureate and also won the 2014 AAEES Grand Prize for Excellence in Environmental Engineering and Science. Past honors include President of AEESP, the AEESP Frontiers in Research Award, the WEF McKee Medal for Groundwater Protection, the SERDP cleanup project of the year award, and various best paper awards with his students. Pedro currently serves on the advisory board of NSF Engineering Directorate and as Associate Editor of Environmental Science and Technology. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2018.

Water for Food, Water for Life: Strategies for Improving Ecosystem Services Under Environmental Change

Noel Aloysius, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Bioengineering and School of Natural Resources
University of Missouri
Columbia, MO

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday March 21, 2018
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Population growth and increasing demand for food and services necessitate an increasingly productive agricultural sector, and the expansion of human interference into natural areas. Increasingly, these managed areas pose risks to public health, impair water quality and other valued ecosystem services. Overexploitation of water resources for food production limit availability and accessibility of water for other valued ecosystem services. In this presentation, I present contrasting case studies that elucidate the challenges ahead in sustainably managing our water resources. Big changes in policy agenda are required in order to ensure food and water security for the present and future generations.

Biography:
Noel Aloysius is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Bioengineering and the School of Natural Resources at the University of Missouri. He completed his PhD at Yale University, masters at the University of North Dakota and bachelors degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. His research seeks to uncover how key drivers and mechanisms, both natural and anthropogenic, affect water and nutrient flow pathways and predict their behavior under environmental change. Prior to joining MU, he was a postdoctoral researcher scholar at The Ohio State University.

Multifunctional Nanoscale Platform Materials for Advanced Environmental Applications

John D. Fortner, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Energy, Environmental & Chemical Engineering
Washington University
St. Louis, MO

3:30 p.m.
Friday February 16, 2018
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
This presentation will focus on the design, synthesis, and demonstration of tunable, nanoscale, material platforms for advanced environmental applications.  First, I will present of our recent work on aggregation resistant, ‘crumpled’ graphene-based nanocomposites, which allow for a unique membrane approach (and properties) when assembled as thin films. The as-synthesized, core-shell nanostructured composites, with controllable size and functionality (including magnetic susceptibility and TiO2 loading), show significantly enhanced aqueous stability and tunable photocatalytic activity due composite geometry, surface/graphene chemistry, and increased lifetime of photo-induced holes.  In addition, crumpled graphene-TiO2 nanocomposite films, deposited/stabilized atop a support membrane (polyethersulfone (PES)), readily reject and (photo)degrade model aqueous pollutants.  Further, facile photocatalytic (photoreduction-based) in situ synthesis (and subsequent regeneration) of silver nanoparticles, which are antimicrobial, is demonstrated at the membrane surface under operating conditions.  For the second part of the presentation, I will discuss our progress towards the development and application of monodisperse, magnetic metal oxide nanocrystals (e.g. iron oxide (Fe3O4), manganese oxide (MnxOy), and manganese ferrite nanocrystals (MnzFe3-zO4)) of varying size, shape, composition, and surface chemistries for optimized metal/metalloid adsorption, separation and quantification, among other applications.  Specifically, I will highlight results from a matrix evaluation of serially synthesized 8-30 nm metal oxides with tailored organic surface coatings designed to target uranium (as uranyl) in varied water chemistries.  Optimized materials demonstrate  some of the highest uranyl sorption capacities of any sorbent to date.  Mechanistically, we show that sorption enhancement is due not only to thermodynamically favorable interfacial interactions (for both particle and selected bilayer coatings), but also due to significant uranyl reduction at the particle interface itself.  Further, due to high particle monodispersivity and aqueous stabilities, residues geometries can be arranged as close-packed, sub-micron thin film geometries, which minimize self-shielding and thus allow for optimal α-particle detection strategies needed for low-level uranyl sensing.

Biography:
As an associate professor within the Department of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering (EECE) at Washington University in St. Louis (WUStL), Professor Fortner has developed a highly successful research program focused on developing and advancing water-related technologies and understanding/engineering interfacial processes, typically at the nanoscale, as they relate to environmental-based health, security, and energy challenges.

Characterizing pore structure and flow properties in subsurface

Chi Zhang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Geology
University of Kansas

3:30 p.m.
Wednesday January 24, 2018
124 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
The complex behavior and coupled dynamics of water and energy systems require highly integrated and innovative research strategy (sensing technology, data analysis, and adaptable model) to enhance the understanding of the tightly coupled physical, chemical, and biological processes that govern the behavior of geologic media and their constituent fluids (water, brine, CO2, and hydrocarbons) from the micro- to macro-scale. My research jointly utilizes hydrogeological, geophysical, and biogeochemical information, coupling with theoretical and numerical simulations to accurately describe the subsurface and to monitor physical, chemical, and biological processes occurring within it. In this talk, I will provide an overview of my research on characterizing pore attributes and fluid flow properties in the subsurface and the relevant applications to water, energy, and environment. I will describe how to estimate porosity, pore size distribution, surface area, and permeability in complex carbonate rocks from electrical geophysical measurements and nuclear magnetic resonance from pore to field scale. The laboratory measurements are coupled with µCT imaging and physics-based numerical simulations of pore attributes and geophysical responses to quantify petrophysical properties during various geological processes including physical and biogeochemical alternations. The ultimate goal of my research is to facilitate the application of geophysical techniques in critical hydrogeological and energy investigations across multiple scales. For more information, please visit http://www.chizhanggeophysics.com/research.html.

Biography:
Dr. Chi Zhang joins the University of Kansas (KU) as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geology in 2015. Prior to coming to KU, she was a postdoctoral scholar at Idaho National Laboratory, Colorado School of Mines, and Rutgers University during 2011 – 2014. Dr. Zhang received her B.S. in Environmental Science from Sun Yat-Sen University in China and her Ph.D. in Environmental Geophysics from Rutgers University. Dr. Zhang’s research interests focus on the development of geophysical monitoring approaches sensitive to alterations of physicochemical properties in different porous media/rocks at various scales and the investigation of the geophysical responses of biological and geochemical processes in the subsurface. In addition, Dr. Zhang’s research group develops physics-based petrophysical and geophysical models using digital rock physics.

2017 Seminars

Azin Eftekhari Ph.D. student
Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering
Missouri S&T

3:30 p.m.
Friday May 5, 2017
Room 121 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) as an important class of indoor pollutants are of great health concern. They can be found in a variety of consumer products used indoors. They can enter the human body through ingestion, inhalation and dermal uptake. Recently, dermal uptake from clothing has been shown to be an important contributor to the body burden of some phthalate esters. The cloth-air partition coefficient, Kcloth-air, is a key parameter in estimating dermal uptake from clothing. The partition coefficient is defined at the equilibrium concentration in the fabric divided by the air concentration. Since semi-volatile organic compounds partition very slowly to fabrics, measurements of equilibrium partition coefficients can take many days or months; therefore a method that reduces the time to reach equilibrium is needed for efficient experimental work. In this research, we demonstrated that the partition coefficient, , can be measured very rapidly using the headspace analysis of vials containing cloth with a known area dosed with a known mass of the two SVOC’s considered in this study, diethyl phthalate (DEP) and di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP). The known mass of SVOCs were applied to the cloth in an appropriate volatile solvent carrier and after evaporation of solvent, the cloth was placed in a 20 ml headspace vial and allowed to equilibrate with the air in the vial. Since the volume of headspace air is small, the total mass required to transfer from cloth to air is small and also the time required is very short (a few minutes). The, partition coefficients for the two phthalate esters, DEP and DnBP, and jean (cotton) were measured at two temperatures of . We found  and  for DEP and  and  for DnBP at , respectively (). These results neatly bound values generated at 25ºC using other, more time consuming methods. This proof of concept for two phthalates suggests that the partition coefficients can be rapidly measured for many compounds, simultaneously for many fabric types.

Biography:
Azin Eftekhari is a PhD student in Dr. Glenn Morrison’s research group in the department of Environmental Engineering at Missouri University of Science & Technology. She received her bachelor’s and master’s in Chemical Engineering in Azad University of North Tehran Branch in 2007 and 2010. Her first interaction with environmental engineering happened when she started her first job in industrial waste water treatment plant and then she became familiar to air pollution researches mainly by starting her job in MATN Research Institute that they studied all environmental pollution effects of 20 power plants in Iran. She joined to Dr. Morrison’s research group on Fall 2015. She has been working on Semi Volatile Organic Compounds and their partitioning with materials present in buildings.

Craig Adams, PhD, PE, F.ASCE
Oliver L. Parks Endowed Chair & Professor
Dept. of Civil Engineering
St. Louis University

3:30 p.m.
Friday April 28, 2017
Room 121 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Controlling cyanotoxins from hazardous algal blooms (HAB) is a significant and increasing challenge for drinking water utilities in Missouri and throughout the nation. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency promulgated in 2015 new health advisories for microcystins and cylindrospermopsin of 0.3 and 0.7 µg/L, respectively, for infants. Controlling these cyanotoxins as well anatoxin a and saxitoxin, can be complex due to complicating factors. For example, cyanotoxins can enter a water treatment plant in either the intracellular form (within a cyanobacteria) or extracellular form (in the water phase). Oxidation of cyanobacteria with chlorine, ozone and permanganate at the intake or anywhere prior to filtration all can cause the release of these intracellular toxins. A further complication to treatment strategies includes that certain oxidant/cyanotoxin combinations achieve rapid toxin removal for other combinations are very slow. The purpose of this talk is to present critical issues and tools (including the AWWA model Hazen-Adams CyanoTOX Ver. 2) for dealing with HABs and their associated toxins.

Biography:
Dr. Adams is the Oliver Parks Professor of Engineering in the Department of Civil Engineering at Saint Louis University. He is a Fellow of ASCE and a registered professional engineer. Dr. Adams conducts research in the Water Quality and Treatment Laboratory at SLU on the oxidation and sorption processes for drinking water contaminants (including pharmaceuticals, cyanotoxins, taste-and-odor compounds, disinfection byproducts, andother compounds). His research group uses a fundamental approach to address water quality and treatment issues to develop actionable guidance for utilities in Missouri and beyond. His group also focuses on developing point-of-use treatment technology for use in developing nations. Dr. Adams is active in AWWA and other professional organizations.

2016 Seminars

Marcus Foston, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Dept. of Energy, Environmental & Chemical Engineering
Washington University, St. Louis, MO

3:30 p.m.
Friday December 2, 2016
Room 121 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri University of Science and Technology

Abstract:
The lignin component of biomass has potential as a renewable source for industrially useful aromatic chemicals. While technologies for the selective conversion of the carbohydrate components have been successful, lignin is generally treated as waste and burned for low grade heat. We have developed a catalytic system, based on a copper-doped porous oxide, which can reductively disassemble lignin in supercritical methanol with little to no char formation. While the copper-doped porous oxide catalyzes C-O hydrogenolysis of aryl-ether bonds linking lignin monomers, it also catalyzed ring methylation and hydrogenation, leading to lignin disassembly product proliferation. We have found that adding dimethyl carbonate can significantly suppress the hydrogenation of the phenolic intermediates responsible for much of the undesirable product diversity by methylation of phenolic hydroxyl groups to form a more stable aryl ether species. Using the methanol and dimethyl carbonate solvent system with the copper-doped porous oxide catalyst, O-methylation of phenolic hydroxyl groups was effective at increasing aromatic yields from a number of lignin model polymer systems and poplar organosolv lignin. These results demonstrate the promise of our copper-doped porous oxide catalyst when used in the presence of methanol and dimethyl carbonate to facilitate aromatic compound production from lignin.

Biography
Marcus Foston is an assistant professor in the Energy, Environmental, and Chemical Engineering Department at Washington University in St Louis. He received his PhD in polymer chemistry in the Material Science and Engineering Department at the Georgia Institute of Technology and soon after completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the School of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the Georgia Institute of Technology. His current research program is directed at the development of innovative and novel routes to exploit and utilize biomass resources. Dr. Marcus Foston primary research themes are: (1) the characterization of biomass in an effort to understand, design, and optimize its downstream conversion, (2) the development of processes that are designed to convert lignin into value-added chemicals and materials, and (3) the synthesis novel biomass-derived synthetic polymers for specific applications.

Full title: 
Toxicological Characteristics of Ambient Particulate Matter - An assessment of the relative contributions from various aerosol components and their emission sources

Vishal Verma, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

3:30 p.m.
Friday November 11, 2016
Room 121 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
A number of epidemiological, toxicological and clinical studies indicate a strong link between ambient particulate matter (PM) exposure and adverse health outcomes. Despite commendable progress in particle-related toxicological research for the last few decades, the exact mechanisms by which PM inflicts health injuries are still largely unknown. The core objective of this work is to identify the components of ambient PM and their emission sources, which are most responsible for inducing the adverse health effects in humans. The capability of the ambient particles to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) and its linkages with their source-specific components are investigated. The role of organic compounds in the ROS activity of PM was assessed by their removal using thermodenuder and solid phase extraction technique, while the contribution of metals was quantified by chelation technique. A class of water-soluble organic compounds characterized by their strong hydrophobicity known as humic-like substances or HULIS, and transition metals particularly Fe, Cu and Mn were identified as the major species driving the ROS generation mechanism in ambient particles. Source apportionment of the ROS generation using positive matrix factorization revealed that biomass burning and secondary organic aerosol formation as the strongest sources of ROS activity in southeastern United States. Further studies in this direction should help to develop the useful insights on the origin of PM toxicity leading to a better assessment of the human health effects of ambient particulate pollution. This in turn would facilitate devising effective control strategies targeted on combating toxic PM emission sources and protecting public health.

Biography
Dr. Verma is an assistant professor at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign and his current work is focused on measuring the toxicological properties of ambient air pollutants, investigating their emission sources and linkages with the observed health effects. Before joining here in last August, he was a research scientist at Georgia Tech. He completed his PhD from the University of Southern California in 2011. In his 8 years of research career, he has published 20 peer-reviewed articles and has presented his work in more than 25 various seminars/meetings and conferences, including several invited talks.

2015 Seminars

Dr. Dwayne A. Elias, Ph.D.
Senior Scientist, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Assistant Professor, Biochemistry & Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Tennessee
Adjunct Associate Professor, Biological Sciences, Missouri S&T

3:30 p.m.
Friday, December 4, 2015
Room 314 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Mercury (Hg) is a pervasive global contaminant of concern impacting human and ecosystem health. Mercury methylation produces the neurotoxic, highly bioaccumulative methylmercury (MeHg). The genes responsible for this activity were recently identified after a >40 years search. The highly conserved nature of these genes (hgcAB) provides a foundation for broadly evaluating spatial and niche-specific patterns of microbial Hg-methylation potential in nature. Discovery and validation of the hgcAB genes has provided a starting point to further understand Hg methylation at a variety of scales, from the atomic to ecosystems and our recent work at these scales will be discussed.

Biography:
Dr. Dwayne Elias has been involved in environmental microbiology for more than 15 years with a particular focus on microbial community dynamics and metals of concern, including U, Tc, and Hg. The overall focus in the Elias laboratory is to forward efforts in bioremediation and advance preventative measures in risk management to avert contamination from occurring. Dr. Elias is regarded by the US Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation as an expert in microbial ecology and physiology. Dr. Elias currently leads two major efforts at ORNL for the DOE in Hg research and microbial community responses to organic and inorganic contaminants. He also is currently a contributing investigator to two efforts for the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Elias received his doctorate from the University of Oklahoma in 2002 and has since graduated 5 Ph.D. students and mentored 9 post-doctoral and 1 post-masters fellows along with several summer high school students. Since 2002, Dr. Elias has published 76 refereed articles in scientific journals, 5 patents, 7 invention disclosures, 3 book chapters and delivered 204oral and poster presentations at national and international meetings. Dr. Elias also serves as an Academic Editor at the PLoS One Journal, an Associate Editor at the Frontiers in Microbiology Journal and a scientific advisory committee member for the Department of Energy.

Sara Parker Pauley
Director

Missouri Department of Natural Resources
Jefferson City, MO

2:00 p.m.
Monday, November 30, 2015
Room 125 Butler-Carlton Hall
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Missouri’s Department of Natural Resources provides research, planning, protection and enhancement of Missouri’s waters through the work of dedicated staff and partners. Director Pauley will discuss various integrated efforts the department is employing to ensure the citizens of the state and its visitors enjoy clean and abundant water for generations to come.

Biography:
Sara Parker Pauley leads the Missouri Department of Natural Resources’ efforts to protect our air, land and water; preserve our unique natural and historic places; and provide recreational and learning opportunities for everyone. Pauley began as director in December 2010 and is the second female to lead the agency. She received both her law degree and her bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri – Columbia, completed post-graduate studies in Australia as a Rotary Fellow and was an instructor for MU’s School of Natural Resources. She is also a graduate of Columbia's Hickman High School. During her career, Pauley has worked in the executive and legislative branches of state government, both fish and wildlife environmental agencies in state government, profit and nonprofit sectors and with federal, state and local governments. Under her leadership, Pauley has worked on policy development, marketing, environmental compliance, and built and improved relationships with Missouri’s communities, business and industry, the environmental community, legislators, and the public to make Missouri a leader in innovative resource conservation, while protecting our outdoor heritage for generations to come.

2014 Seminars

Kwame Awuah-Offei
Associate Professor
Mining & Nuclear Engineering Department
Missouri S&T

3:30 p.m.
Friday, February 14, 2014 
Room 314 Butler Carlton Hall- Civil Building
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
A defining feature of spatial data is autocorrelation of observations in space (i.e. observations close to each other in space are likely to be similar than those that are far apart). Spatial data can be classified by the characteristics of the d-dimensional domain into lattice, point patterns, and geostatistical data. The presence of spatial autocorrelation has specific implications for analysis, which if ignored lead to invalid inferences. The goal of this seminar is to present, and encourage discussion on: (i) the limitations of classical statistical models when applied to spatial data; and (ii) the specific answers that geostatistical analysis can provide in geo-environmental research. The presentation will use specific examples of heavy metal soil contamination and soil CO2 emissions to illustrate the value of geostatistical analysis to geo-environmental research.

Biography:
Dr. Kwame Awuah-Offei is currently an associate professor of mining engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology. He hold a PhD and BS(Hons) in mining engineering from University of Missouri-Rolla and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology, respectively. His current research interests include geostatistics, stochastic processes, and modeling, simulation, and optimization of mining systems .He has over 12 years research experience. He has industry experience in surface gold and aggregates operations. He is nationally active in the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration (SME) is the current Chair of the Sustainable Development Committee.

Dr. Santosh K. Mishra
ERC Research Chemist - Missouri S&T

3:30 PM
Friday, February 21, 2014 
Room 314 Butler Carlton Hall- Civil Building
Missouri S&T

Abstract:
Aerosols scatter solar radiation and affect climate, hence it is important to characterize changes in atmospheric aerosols due to anthropogenic sources. Trace metals in aerosols, acts as markers in identifying generic source type and are used as indicator of pollutant transport. This talk will provide an overview of analytical instrumentation for sensitive and trace level detection of organic and inorganic species in atmospheric aerosols as well as several vital pioneering contributions in developing capillary chromatography instrumentation. Pharmaceuticals, non-biodegradable emerging contaminants, often pass through elimination steps of water and wastewater treatment plants. This talk will also focus on the oxidative degradation of commonly used antibiotic and analgesic from water using novel green chemical – Ferrate. Hydrogen Cyanide is the quickest acting of all poisons. Rapid quantification of blood cyanide is very important in clinical examination and on-site forensic investigations to detect victim’s cyanide exposure and to determine the antidote to be administered in order to save human life. This talk will also shed light on invention of new miniature rapid-point-of-care miniature cyanide detector.

Biography:
Dr. Santosh Mishra is an Analytical Chemist and newly appointed Research Chemist at the Environmental Research Center at Missouri S&T. He has previously served as Technology Development Senior Process Engineer at Intel’s R&D fabrication facility in Portland, Oregon. Dr. Mishra has BS degree in Chemical Engineering from the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai; MS degree in Chemistry from the Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida and PhD in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas. He holds memberships in numerous professional organizations and scientific research journals. Dr. Mishra has research interests and authored numerous papers in the areas of analytical instrumentation and analysis of atmospheric organic and inorganic contaminants.