Our lab is currently focused on the environmental implications of nanotechnology, which continues to touch our day-to-day lives in new ways. While there are many potential benefits of these novel materials, they are not without risks. As their uses continue to grow, a proactive assessment of nanoparticle behavior in natural waters in necessary.
We use laboratory experiments to investigate the chemical reactions that help us understand the behavior and fate of nanoparticles in a variety of aqueous environments. This experimental approach allows us to control various water quality parameters such as dissolved oxygen, pH and organic material. Our studies have mostly focused on silver nanoparticles because they are among the most common type of nanomaterial in consumer goods today, but we also investigate the behaviors of other metal-containing nanoparticles like copper oxide and zinc oxide. We use a suite a chemical analyses to fully characterize nanoparticles in our lab.