Honors College Thesis


The Stability, Toxicity, and Reactivity of Zero Valent Iron Nanoparticles Public Deposited

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  • Zero valent iron nanoparticles effectively remediate groundwater contaminants due to their catalytic properties and enhanced surface area. However, these properties contribute to particle agglomeration, decreasing their effectiveness. In this study, we examined the effect of two stabilizing agents (gum arabic (GA) and sodium carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC)) on particle stability, toxicity, and reactivity. Stability was assessed by measuring particle hydrodynamic diameter (HDD). The HDD of the unstabilized particles was over 1000 nm, while the CMC and GA stabilized particles were around 200 nm. Embryonic zebrafish were used to investigate the sublethal toxicity and mortality resulting from particle solution exposure over 5 days. The CMC stabilized particles and unstabilized particles caused significant mortality at lower concentrations, while lower concentrations of GA stabilized particles only caused hatching delay. Reduction of trichloroethylene (TCE) was assessed using gas chromatography following a 24 hour incubation. The concentration of TCE only decreased when incubated with GA and CMC stabilized particles. The small HDD of the particles synthesized with stabilizers indicated these compounds stabilized the particles. GA stabilized particles had the smallest HDD, led to the greatest decrease in TCE, and were assessed to be the least toxic in this study. Key Words: Zero valent iron, nanoparticles, zebrafish, trichloroethylene
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  • This work was supported by the Pete and Rosalie Johnson Internship Program, theDeLoach work scholarship, the Honors Experience Scholarship, and the UndergraduateResearch, Innovation, Scholarship, and Creativity award, the Air Force Research LabAFRL FA8650-05-1-5041, and the NIH ONES grant ES017552-01A2. The transmissionelectron microscope (TEM) images are based upon work supported by the NationalScience Foundation via the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) Program under GrantNo. 1040588. We also gratefully acknowledge financial support for the acquisition of theTEM instrument from the Murdock Charitable Trust and the Oregon Nanosciences andMicrotechnologies Institute (ONAMI).
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