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Title: The Center for Environmental Kinetics Analysis: an NSF- and DOE-funded Environmental Molecular Science Institute (EMSI) at Penn State

Physicochemical and microbiological processes taking place at environmental interfaces influence natural processes as well as the transport and fate of environmental contaminants, the remediation of toxic chemicals, and the sequestration of anthropogenic CO2. A team of scientists and engineers has been assembled to develop and apply new experimental and computational techniques to expand our knowledge of environmental kinetics. We are also training a cohort of talented and diverse students to work on these complex problems at multiple length scales and to compile and synthesize the kinetic data. Development of the human resources capable of translating molecular-scale information into parameters that are applicable in real world, field-scale problems of environmental kinetics is a major and relatively unique objective of the Institute's efforts. The EMSI team is a partnership among 10 faculty at The Pennsylvania State University (funded by the National Science Foundation Divisions of Chemistry and Earth Sciences), one faculty member at Juniata College, one faculty member at the University of Florida, and four researchers drawn from Los Alamos National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (funded by the Department of Energy Division of Environmental Remediation Sciences). Interactions among the applied and academic scientists drives research approachesmore » aimed toward solving important problems of national interest. The Institute is organized into three interest groups (IGs) focusing on the processes of dissolution (DIG), precipitation (PIG), and microbial reactions at surfaces (BIG). Some of the research activity from each IG is highlighted to the right. The IGs interact with each other as each interest group studies reactions across the molecular, microscopic, mesoscopic and, in most cases, field scales. For example, abiotic dissolution and precipitation reactions of Fe oxides as studied in the Dissolution IG provides the baseline for kinetic behavior as the BIG researches the interaction of microorganisms with these same minerals. The attachment of bacteria and redox chemistry that occurs between microorganisms and minerals are critical factors in maintaining groundwater quality and remediation of many toxic waste sites and is one of the main thrusts of research within our EMSI. The IGs also participate in using visualization tools to promote greater understanding of complex environmental data. As a whole, CEKA is also working to compile environmental kinetics data into a cyberinfrastructure and database. The database can be accessed at: http://keystone.ist.psu.edu/.« less
Authors:
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
926155
Report Number(s):
CONF/ERSP2007-1024948
R&D Project: ERSD 1024948; TRN: US200807%%380
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Annual Environmental Remediation Science Program (ERSP) Principal Investigator Meeting, April 16-19, 2007, Lansdowne, VA
Research Org:
The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE - Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; ENVIRONMENTAL MATERIALS; KINETICS; ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORT; POLLUTANTS; CARBON SEQUESTRATION; EDUCATIONAL FACILITIES; PENNSYLVANIA; RESEARCH PROGRAMS; DISSOLUTION; MICROORGANISMS; OXIDES; PRECIPITATION