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Doctoral student wins international conference paper award

Oindrila Ghosh, Environmental Engineering PhD Candidate

Oindrila Ghosh, environmental engineering doctoral candidate, is the winner of the Student Paper Competition for the Eleventh International Conference on the Remediation and Management of Contaminated Sediments for her paper, “Design Optimization of Passive Sampling Prototypes with Periodic Vibration for Porewater Measurements of Polychlorinated Biphenyls.” The 2023 Sediments Conference will take place in Austin, Texas from January 9-12, 2023. Oindrila will present her work during the poster presentations. 

Oindrila is in her fourth year of her doctoral program under the supervision of Dr. Upal Ghosh. Her research focuses on the fate and transport of persistent organic contaminants in the environment that tend to bioaccumulate in aquatic organisms like fish. 

Student paper title: Design Optimization of Passive Sampling Prototypes with Periodic Vibration, for Porewater Measurements of Polychlorinated Biphenyls.

Authors: Oindrila Ghosh, Louis Cheung, Upal Ghosh (University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD), Mehregan Jalalizadeh (Exponent, Los Angeles, California)

ABSTRACT: Polymeric passive sampling has emerged as a promising approach for accurate measurements of bioavailability of hydrophobic organic contaminants. However, in-situ measurements of sediment porewater concentrations are challenged by slower mass transfer through the water boundary layer (WBL) outside the polymer compared to well-stirred laboratory measurements. Using performance reference compounds (PRC) to correct for non-equilibrium conditions is prone to error, especially for more hydrophobic compounds like higher homolog group Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) and dioxins/furans. Previous research has shown that the mechanical disruption of the WBL outside the polymer surface by introducing periodic vibration on the sampling platform greatly enhances the approach to equilibrium for more hydrophobic contaminants. In this study we aim to optimize the design of these prototypes and vibration frequency for sediment porewater measurements through laboratory experiments and mathematical modeling. The key motivations were to make the sampling devices versatile for more hydrophobic organics and increase the size of the prototypes from the initial proof-of-concept design by increasing the size of the motor and making them more reliable for deployment in the field, all the while keeping them low-cost.

IMAGE CREDIT: Dr. Upal Ghosh

Learn more about Oindrila’s research and art at https://www.oinghosh.com/ and on Linkedin

Posted: January 13, 2023, 3:51 PM