Discipline: Ecology Environmental and Earth Sciences
Room: Exhibit Hall A
Olive Cooper - Tougaloo College
Co-Author(s): Valeria Brown, Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, MS; Sharon Jimerson, Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, MS.
Deterioration of the water quality around us is a warning sign of possible pollution in water sources that may pose health risks. Some important factors that affects water quality are temperature, pH, turbidity, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, chemical oxygen (COD) demand and biochemical oxygen demand. This project is conducted by student participants of the 2019 Summer Science and Engineering at Tougaloo College. The goal is to assess the water quality at the Ross Barnet Reservoir while teaching students the real-life application of chemistry. The Ross Barnett Reservoir is a reservoir of the Pearl River between Madison and Rankin counties in MS. Water samples are collected from 4 locations at Ross Barnett reservoir. Temperature, turbidity, conductivity, dissolved oxygen (DO), chemical oxygen demand (COD) were measured. We have found that the dissolved oxygen, chemical oxygen demand, turbidity and conductivity are also in the permissible range despite slight fluctuations from location to location. The pHs are mainly in permissible range except one location which may need further study and confirmation. The data from the current year is also compared with that from the previous year. We found that water quality in a previously polluted location which showed high conductivity from last year?s data was back to normal range. Effects of water-flow, precipitation, and human activity on the measured data are discussed. Through this project students learned techniques such as sample collection and preservation, principle of basic stoichiometry and titration, spectroscopy and electrochemistry. For future research, the locations will be more diversified, and water will be collected farther from shore.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): National Science Foundation HBCU-UP Implementation Project Award (#1912191)
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Manliang Feng, email@example.com
Role: During the research process, I contributed by collecting the water samples from the reservoir directly using different bottling mechanisms and fixed each water sample with the required chemical reagents. I also helped with testing of chemical oxygen demand, dissolved oxygen, and conductivity by going through the necessary lab procedures. After the water samples were tested for the different parameter, I created the graphs using the data that was collected this year to compare the data collected from last year to measure whether was any significant improvement in water quality.