Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2018AR403B

An In Situ Approach to Harmful Algal Blooms: Simultaneous Treatment of Cyanobacteria and Cyanotoxins in Natural Water Sources Using Catalytic Nanoparticle-Fiber Nets

Institute: Arkansas
Year Established: 2018 Start Date: 2018-03-01 End Date: 2019-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $24,996 Total Non-Federal Funds: $51,170

Principal Investigators: Lauren Greenlee, Wen Zhang

Abstract: Harmful algal blooms (HABs) have been recognized as global phenomenon that can have devastating consequences: they produce cyanotoxins or accumulate biomass that alter the food web dynamics, adversely impacting the health of humans, livestock and wildlife. As a result, it is a national interest to prevent, control and mitigate HABs. Currently there are no effective treatment methods for in situ and simultaneous treatment of cyanobacteria and cyanotoxin. As eutrophication worsens in water bodies due to excessive nutrients discharge from anthropogenic activities, it is imperative to develop an effective in situ treatment method that can inactivate cyanobacteria and degrade cyanotoxins simultaneously, without deleterious impacts on the aquatic ecosystem. The goal of this proposal is to conduct proof-of-concept experiments to demonstrate the feasibility of an in situ approach to treat harmful algal blooms (HABs), where cyanotoxins and cyanobacteria are simultaneously degraded and deactivated. The technical objectives of this proposal are to test commercially available and experimentally synthesized TiO2 and Fe catalytic nanoparticles for cyanotoxin degradation and cyanobacteria inactivation, immobilize nanoparticles on a polymer fiber net, and evaluate a nanoparticle-polymer fiber net for in situ treatment of cyanotoxins and HABs.