August 16, 2017

Neal Durant and Dogus Meric to Present at the Fall American Chemical Society National Meeting

Neal Durant (Maryland) and Dogus Meric (Illinois) will present at the 254th American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting in Washington, D.C. on August 20-24, 2017.

Neal's presentation is entitled "From bench experiments to full scale application: development of three commercially successful technologies for reducing the time and cost for remediating contaminated industrial sites." His co-authors were Dave Major, Evan Cox, James Wang, Sandra Dworatzek, Elizabeth Edwards, Gavin Grant, Jason Gerhard, Denis O'Carroll, and David Gent.

Dogus' presentation, entitled "Global Economic Impact of Environmental Health Research: A Case Study of the NIEHS Superfund Research Program," is based on his doctoral research on the efficiency of thin-layer reactive geocomposite sediment caps. His research was one of two large research projects conducted at Northeastern University and funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program. His co-authors were Akram Alshawabkeh, James Shine, and Thomas Sheahan.

ACS national meetings occur twice a year in various cities around the U.S. and each one attracts an estimated 11,000 to 13,000 chemists, chemical engineers, academicians, graduate and undergraduate students, and other related professionals. Each meeting features more than 7,000 presentations organized into technical symposia that highlight important research advances. ACS serves more than 157,000 members globally, providing educational and career development programs, products, and services. As the largest scientific society in the world, they are a leading and authoritative source of scientific information.

Session Details

PRESENTER: Dogus Meric
SESSION: Economic Impact of Environmental Health Research: A Case Study of the NIEHS Superfund Research Program
TITLE: Use of reactive mats for cost-effective clean-up of contaminated aquatic sediments
SESSION TIME: 8:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
DAY & TIME OF PRESENTATION: Wednesday, August, 23, 2017 from 10:05 a.m. - 10:25 a.m.
ROOM & LOCATION: Meeting Room 3 - Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown

Contaminated aquatic sediments present some of the most difficult remediation challenges among all the categories of contaminant clean-up scenarios. In addition to the logistical issues of difficult accessibility to the subaqueous sediment and the possibility for contaminant resuspension, contaminants are often strongly bound to these sediments and hydrogeological conditions may complicate or contravene the remediation strategy. With cleanup costs for aquatic sediments in the U.S. alone in the billions of dollars, and with increasingly limited available budgets for such work, new and more economical technologies are needed to deliver effective cleanup solutions at a lower cost than conventional cleanup methods (i.e., hydraulic or mechanical dredging, conventional sand capping). One technology for remediation of aquatic sediments is the use of a reactive core mat placed on the surface of the sediment. This multilayered geocomposite material, typically 1 cm thick and produced in 5 m-wide rolls, consists of two outer filtration and stabilizing layers with an internal layer of amendment (e.g., Organoclay®, powdered or granular activated carbon). These materials were the focus of an extensive benchscale experimental program and numerical modeling program to understand their efficacy in remediating the sediment, reducing bioavailability to benthic organisms, and reducing resuspension in the overlying water column. The placement of the mat initiates advective upward flow through the reactive material and leads to a concentrated zone within the mat of contaminant reacting with the core. Several case studies from field application sites are described in which reactive mats were used, and cost comparisons provided with alternative remediation technologies that could have been selected for those sites. The presentation concludes that the use of these reactive mats in the appropriate site conditions provides considerable cost savings over alternatives.

PRESENTER: Neal Durant
SESSION: Economic Impact of Environmental Health Research: A Case Study of the NIEHS Superfund Research Program
TITLE: From bench experiments to full scale application: development of three commercially successful technologies for reducing the time and cost for remediating contaminated industrial sites
SESSION TIME: 1:30 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.
DAY & TIME OF PRESENTATION: Wednesday, August, 23, 2017 from 1:35 p.m. – 1:55 p.m.
ROOM & LOCATION: Meeting Room 3 - Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown

The universe of industrial sites in the U.S. awaiting cleanup is daunting, with an estimated 126,000 sites needing cleanup at a cost between $110 to $127 billion. Many “simple” sites have been cleaned up already and, in general, the more complex sites remain. Complex sites typically involve chlorinated solvent mixtures, nonaqueous phase liquids (NAPLs), and/or low permeability geologic matrices. Here we present three innovation success stories in which technologies aimed at solving complex site remediation were developed through the course of pain-staking research, repeated experimentation at multiple universities, peer review publication, and field demonstration. The first technology is use of dechlorinating bacterial cultures to bioaugment aquifers to increase the rate of bioremediation to treat chloroethenes, chloroethanes, or chloromethanes in groundwater. After years of repeated enrichments, characterization through qPCR etc, and optimization, these dechlorinating cultures (named KB-1) have been used successfully to improve bioremediation performance at over 530 sites globally. A second innovative technology, in situ smoldering combustion (aka STAR), addresses a different type of complex site, specifically sites contaminated with coal tar creosote NAPL. STAR involves in situ treatment of NAPL via smoldering combustion (similar to charcoal) above or below the water table. STAR is a process that achieves a self-sustaining combustion front, requiring only an initial ignition and subsequent aeration providing oxygen for smoldering. Taking STAR from bench test concept to field deployment required years of research by multiple universities. Research demonstrated that STAR can thermally destroy/oxidize 99% of coal tar in situ. Today, STAR is being used for a major coal tar remediation in Newark NJ, treating over 1 ton/day; and ex situ STAR applications are in use in Asia. Electrokinetically (EK) enhanced remediation is a third technology invented to tackle complex sites, in particular contaminated silts and clays. EK remediation involves application of a low voltage direct electrical current to enhance distribution of anion treatment agents into clay (e.g., permanganate or lactate), achieving migration rates between 2 to 5 cm/day. Our team is performing the first successful full scale application of EK-bioremediation for treatment of a chlorinated solvent source area. Each of these inventions presents an economic benefit for business as well as society.

More Information

For more information regarding the NIEHS, visit: https://www.niehs.nih.gov/
For more information regarding the event, visit: https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/meetings/fall-2017.html
For more information on environmental compliance, contact Neal Durant at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Dogus Meric at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
To learn more about Neal see his profile at: https://www.geosyntec.com/people/neal-durant
To learn more about Dogus see his profile at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dogusmeric/

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