Dr. Olya Keen – UNC Charlotte

Categories:Events, General Event

Event Date:
October 14, 2013 – 3:45 PM to October 15, 2013 – 4:59 PM

Location:
Burson 115

Event Date:
October 14, 2013 – 3:45 PM to October 15, 2013 – 4:59 PM

Location:
Burson 115

Seminar Series

Fall 2013

Dr. Olya Keen

UNC Charlotte
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Will be presenting

“Application of ultraviolet-based treatment processes for treatment of pharmaceuticals in wastewater”

Abstract:

Pharmaceuticals and other trace organic pollutants are introduced to the environment with treated domestic wastewater. These contaminants are known to have detrimental effects on aquatic life and may even be linked to human health issues. For example, low levels of estrogenic compounds cause gender reversal in fish, and trace levels of antibiotics in wastewater have been linked with the increased prevalence of resistant bacteria in the environment.

Wastewater treatment plants are designed to handle biodegradable waste and many of the pharmaceutical contaminants would go through the typical wastewater treatment processes unchanged. Researchers are evaluating a variety of advanced treatment processes, as regulation of trace contaminants is looming on the horizon.

Among advanced treatment processes, the most promising ones involve chemical transformation of the contaminants rather than their physical removal. This presentation focuses on photolysis with ultraviolet (UV) range wavelengths and a combination of UV with hydrogen peroxide. Because these processes involve chemical reactions, it is important to consider the properties of the products that form. Background constituents in wastewater can complicate the reactions even more.

The results of several bench scale studies will be presented to examine the transformation of biologically recalcitrant pharmaceuticals and antibacterial compounds in wastewater during UV-based advanced treatment. The results indicate that even without complete mineralization, the molecules become more environmentally benign in most instances.

Biography:

Dr. Olya Keen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from the University ofSouth Florida in 2008, and her Ph.D. degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2012. She was a recipient of the STAR (Science to Achieve Results) graduate fellowship from the US Environmental Protection Agency. Her research focused on developing advanced treatment processes for emerging environmental contaminants in wastewater. She is the author of a book chapter and 9 peer-reviewed journal publications, one of which was awarded the Best UV Paper of the Year by the International Ultraviolet Association.

Monday, October 14, 2013 @ 4:00pm Rm. 115 Burson
Refreshments served @ 3:45