Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2012AZ476B

Fate of Emerging Nanoparticle Contaminants during Aquifer Recharge with Treated Wastewater

Institute: Arizona
Year Established: 2012 Start Date: 2012-03-01 End Date: 2013-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $10,450 Total Non-Federal Funds: $21,678

Principal Investigators: Reyes Sierra, James Field

Abstract: The growing application of engineered nanomaterials(particles less than 100 nm) in industrial processes and consumer products is leading to increasing emissions of nanoparticles (NPs) into the environment. Engineered NPs are contaminants of emerging concern. Studies conducted over the past 10 years have provided compelling evidence that a variety of engineered NPs can cause toxic effects to mammalian cells and other ecologically-important species. Effluent discharges from municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants are important sources of NP emissions into the environment. In Arizona and other locations where artificial aquifer recharge with treated sewage is practiced, NPs carried by the wastewater could potentially be transported to groundwater used for drinking water supply. The purpose of this study is to determine the extent to which NPs in treated wastewater are attenuated by soil-aquifer treatment.