Colorado State University
Samia Amiri is a master’s student and graduate research assistant in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Colorado State University (CSU). Samia received her Bachelor of Science in Water Engineering from Isfahan University of Technology in 2013. Prior to CSU, she worked for Oklahoma State University and the Water Section of Presidential Office in Afghanistan on soil salinity management in irrigated lands. Her current research focuses on combining chemical and biological oxidation for the removal of persistent organic contaminants from groundwater. Samia’s current research interests include remediation of soil and water systems, water quality, and sustainable water management.
STUDENT POSTER PRESENTATION
Combining Chemical with Biological Oxidation for Efficient Treatment of Chloronitrobenzene
Chloronitrobenzene (CNB) is widely used in the synthesis of pesticides, dyes and pharmaceuticals, and known to be recalcitrant to biodegradation under anoxic conditions. When receptors are threatened by CNB-contaminated groundwater, regulators may demand immediate remediation approaches, such as advanced oxidation processes (AOPs). However, AOPs are often not economically viable, particularly when full mineralization is targeted. In this study, we investigated the use of electrochemical oxidation for targeted ring opening of CNB followed by anaerobic biodegradation of the intermediates. High-resolution mass spectrometry revealed generation of multiple dicarboxylate species during electrochemical oxidation. Samples of electrolyzed CNB at different oxidation stages were then exposed to an indigenous microbial culture from a CNB-contaminated site to assess the biodegradability of the generated intermediates. Our results demonstrate that the combination of AOPs for initial oxidation with subsequent biodegradation of the transformation intermediates is an efficient approach for the treatment of aromatic groundwater contaminants.