Dr. Bridget Ulrich, research seminar on Removal of Polar Organic Contaminants in Aquatic Systems
- Friday, April 5, 2019 from 3:00pm to 4:00pm
- Roberts Hall, 218 - view map
Dr. Bridget Ulrich is a candidate for assistant professor in environmental engineering.
Abstract: Urbanization and water scarcity have caused growing concern for impaired water quality, presenting new challenges for water treatment systems. In particular, organic compounds that contain polar functional groups (such as pesticides, flame retardants, and munitions components) are more mobile in aquatic environments and more difficult to remove in treatment systems. Understanding the removal of these contaminants is further complicated because multiple removal processes may be occurring simultaneously (such as sorption, biodegradation, and abiotic degradation). Two studies will be discussed that address this overarching problem as it relates to (1) the removal of pesticides and flame retardants from urban stormwater, and (2) the remediation of groundwater contaminated with munitions components. Approaches utilizing (i) novel analytical tools (high resolutions mass spectrometry, next generation sequencing, and compound specific isotope analysis), (ii) porous media contaminant transport modeling, and (iii) various experimental scales were applied to probe the underlying removal mechanisms for the contaminants of interest. Future research efforts will focus on understanding underlying removal processes for polar organic contaminants in natural and engineered water treatment systems; with the goal of improving numerical models for organic contaminant removal and ultimately informing systems analysis and design for water treatment systems.
Biography: Bridget Ulrich holds a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines, a M.S. in Chemical and Bioengineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, and Bachelor’s degrees in Chemical Engineering and Chemistry from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She was previously a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag), and she is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Colorado School of Mines, where her research is focused on methane emissions from leaking underground natural gas pipelines.
- Civil Engineering