State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2009DE164B
Title: Characterizing the chemistry of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in watershed runoff using innovative techniques
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2009
End Date: 2/28/2010
Congressional District: At Large
Focus Categories: Hydrogeochemistry, Solute Transport, Water Quality
Keywords: Dissolved organic matter, contaminant transport, chemical speciation
Principal Investigator: Inamdar, Shreeram; Seetharam, Suneil
Federal Funds: $ 1,750
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 3,500
Abstract: Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is an important carrier of pollutants in the watershed. Organic contaminants and metals are adsorbed onto DOM and are thus transported with runoff. Not only is the total amount of DOM important, but so is the quality of DOM. For example, metals and organic toxins move preferentially with hydrophobic compounds in DOM; whereas, chemicals such as nitrogen are transported with the hydrophilic fractions. Therefore, if we know the quality of dissolved organic matter (the hydrophilic and hydrophobic contents), then we have a better idea of the types of pollutants that can be transported with runoff. Thus, our interest in this research is to characterize the chemistry of DOM and the various constituents that make up DOM. Specifically, we are interested in the various hydrophobic and hydrophilic compounds of DOM.

The objectives of this project are to characterize DOM constituents for runoff waters from a forested watershed located in Cecil County, MD. Water samples from storm events as well as non-storm periods will be collected. This watershed is part of a larger project of Dr. Inamdar that is being funded by the National Science Foundation. DOM components that will be analyzed include - (1) Contents of phenols and flavonoids; (2) Aromaticity of the DOM using the specific UV absorbance (SUVA) index; (3) Separation of hydrophobic and hydrophilic components using XAD resin columns; (4) Bioavailable fractions of DOM.

Progress/Completion Report, 2009, PDF

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