Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2012NJ307B

Application of Graphene-based Sorbents for Arsenic and Lead Removal from Drinking Water Resources

Institute: New Jersey
Year Established: 2012 Start Date: 2012-03-01 End Date: 2013-07-31
Total Federal Funds: $29,736 Total Non-Federal Funds: $59,474

Principal Investigators: Shifeng Hou, Huan Feng

Abstract: Arsenic (As) and lead (Pb) are the most public concerns of toxic pollutants in drinking water. Trace amounts of As and Pb in drinking water can accumulate in the human body and cause health problems. For example, As and Pb contamination in groundwater has been identified in some areas of New Jersey. Hence, specific treatments for removal of these contaminants, especially from drinking water systems, are urgently needed. This proposed project attempts to develop and employ a new carbon-based nanomaterial (i.e., graphene) as an innovative sorbent with high capacity and activity to nearly completely remove As and Pb contaminants from drinking water. In this seed project, we will fabricate and synthesize new graphene-based sorbents that have high adsorption capacity and can be re-useable and manufactured with lower cost. The success of this project is expected to lead to the development of a new generation of functionalized graphene-based nanomaterial (FGO) sorbent with a better reactivity and high adsorption capacity. Our preliminary laboratory research has demonstrated that Pb(II) concentration in drinking water after treatment with our new-developed FGO sorbent is less than 1ppb, which is lower than the FDA drinking water standard (10 ppb). In this proposed research we aim at developing a FGO sorbent to reduce As concentration to less than 1~5 ppb in drinking water. Therefore, the outcome of this project meets the requirements of NJWRRI, and it is plausibly expected that the end-product of this research can be used immediately in drinking water treatment systems.