Date of Award

5-2008

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Environmental Engineering and Science

Advisor

DeVol, Timothy A

Committee Member

Lee , Cindy M

Committee Member

DiPrete , David P

Abstract

A new method was developed for the determination of uranium in groundwater above 30µg/L (30ppb). This concentration is the maximum contaminant level (MCL) for uranium in drinking water, which was set in December 2003 by the US EPA under the provisions of the Safe Drinking Water Act. The method is rapid and requires little technical training to conduct, allowing it to be used by consumers, in the laboratory, or in the field. The two-step technique involves preconcentrating uranium using a U/TEVA-2 extraction chromatographic resin followed by complexation with a pyridylazo indicator dye, Br-PADAP. At neutral pH, a counter ion is needed to stabilize the organometallic complex, which has an absorbance at 578nm. Although spectrophotometry can be used to quantify the uranium in a sample, the color change is visible to the eye. Preconcentration using U/TEVA-2 also serves to eliminate metals that may interfere with the quantification of uranium.

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