Spectroscopic Characterization of Model Organic Pollutant Interactions with Mineral Oxide Surfaces
AdvisorPemberton, Jeanne E.
Committee ChairPemberton, Jeanne E.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractVibrational spectroscopy is used to elucidate the adsorption mechanisms of model volatile organic pollutants with a variety of mineral oxides. Vapor phase adsorption processes are particularly important in the vadose zone of an aquifer, where void spaces are filled with air and vapor transport is significant. Gaining a better understanding of the interactions occurring at the oxide-air interface is critical in developing or improving remediation strategies. In this work, Raman and infrared spectroscopy are used to obtain molecularly specific information concerning model pollutant-oxide adsorption processes. The choices of pollutants are varied to include several classes of compounds. The interactions of azaarenes, aromatics, chlorinated aromatics, trichloroethylene, and tributyl phosphate are investigated with several mineral types. Pure mineral phases such as silica, alumina, hydrated iron oxide, and montmorillonite clay are used to provide a basis set of interactions, which can be extended to more complex systems in the future. Pollutantoxide interactions, including weak physisorption, hydrogen bonding, Bronsted acid-base, and Lewis acid-base, were identified in this work and varied depending on the specific pollutant-oxide system. This research provides surface adsorption information on environmentally relevant contaminants and the techniques may be utilized to verify the accuracy of pollutant fate and transport models and to improve remediation strategies for such pollutants.