Discipline: Ecology Environmental and Earth Sciences
Subcategory: Plant Research
Room: Exhibit Hall A
Shawn Vanderpool Jr - South Carolina State University
Co-Author(s): *Julie Sainyo, Office of Educational Programs, South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, SC 29117 *Florence Anoruo, Office of Educational Programs, South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, SC 29117 *Juergen Thieme - Imaging & Microscopy Program NSLS-II, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY 11973
Heavy metals are naturally occurring elements (metals and metalloids) characterized by their high atomic mass and density, and include chromium, arsenic, cadmium, and mercury, lead and others. Their mobilization and subsequent release into the environment stems from multiple industrial, domestic, agricultural, medical and technological applications. Hexavalent chromium (Cr(vi)), arsenic, and other heavy metals have been classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic, teratogenic and endocrine disruptors, and in some cases are linked to neurological and behavioral changes, particularly in children. Therefore, remediation of heavy metal contaminated environments is crucial. Phytoremediation is the use of plants to reduce the concentrations or toxic effects of contaminants in the environment, and offers a cost-effective and environmentally friendly strategy of remediation, compared to conventional methods. Brownfields are defined as land that was previously used for industrial or commercial purposes with known or suspected pollution including soil contamination due to hazardous waste. The aim of our project is to: a) determine the presence of heavy metals (chromium and arsenic) in soil samples from select brownfields and agricultural fields in SC; (b) evaluate the phytoremediation potential of selected plant species in brownfields and agricultural soils contaminated with hexavalent chromium and arsenic. Soil samples were collected from sites previously identified by South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC) as brownfield in Florence SC, and agricultural fields in Orangeburg County, SC. Soil samples were analyzed with the Sub-micron Resolution X-ray Spectroscopy Beamline5-ID. Our initial results showed the presence of heavy metals including chromium and arsenic at varying counts. Higher counts of chromium. arsenic, lead, and titanium were detected in the soils from brownfield sites compared to the agricultural ones. Three cultivars of Brassica juncea would be grown in soils from the identified sites with high counts of chromium and arsenic, to determine their ability to reduce the concentrations via bio-absorption/biodegradation. Our ten weeks ran out but our research is still ongoing, We started the planting of the Brassica juncea but our phytoremediation takes 6 weeks so Prof. Anoruo will return to harvest and process for analysis.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): DOE; NSF-CRTP (College Research Team Program)
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Florence Anoruo, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: The whole thing from the beginning to the end of the experiment me. from the research part to the actual in lab things.