WRHSRC News and Events

blue dot blue dot blue dot June 2007 - WRHSRC and the TOSC and TAB outreach programs cease operations blue dot blue dot blue dot

On June 30, 2007 the Western Hazardous Substance Research Center and its outreach programs Technical Outreach Services for Communities and Technical Assistance to Brownfields Communities ceased operations. This Web site is retained as an archive of center publications and projects.

blue dot blue dot blue dot March 2007 - Professor Perry L. McCarty, director of the WRHSRC from 1989-2001, named the 2007 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate blue dot blue dot blue dot

Dr. McCarty, professor emeritus at Stanford University, received the award for his pioneering work in the design and operation of water and wastewater systems. He defined the field of environmental biotechnology that is the basis for small-scale and large-scale pollution control and safe drinking water systems. Read more...

blue dot blue dot blue dot June 2006 - New Research Brief on the Application of Molecular Techniques to Bioremediation Available blue dot blue dot blue dot

This short web article describes work by Michael Spoorman and Sebastian Behrens (Stanford University) to apply polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) for monitoring bioremediation in situ. Read more...http://wrhsrc.oregonstate.edu/briefs/brief_10.htm

January 2006 - WRHSRC Publications from 2005

Journal Articles:

  • Cunningham, J.A., J.J. Deitsch, J.A. Smith, J and M. Reinhard, 2005, “Quantification of Contaminant Sorption-Desorption Time-Scales from Batch Experiments,” Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 24 (9), 2160-2166.
  • Doughty D.M., Sayavedra-Soto L.A., Arp D.J., and Bottomley P.J., 2005, "Effects of dichloroethene isomers on the induction and activity of butane monooxygenase in the alkane-oxidizing bacterium, ‘Pseudomonas butanovora’", Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 71(10): 6054-6059.
  • Field, J. A., J. D. Istok, L. Semprini, P. Bennett, and T. E. Buscheck, 2005, “Trichlorofluoroethene: A Reactive Tracer for Evaluating the Effectiveness of In Situ Trichloroethene Remediation,” Ground Water Monitoring Remediation, 25(2):68-77.
  • Halsey K.H., Sayavedra-Soto L.A., Bottomley P.J., Arp D.J., 2005, "Trichloroethylene degradation by butane-oxidizing bacteria causes a spectrum of toxic effects. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 68(6): 794-801".
  • Jones, B.D., and J.D. Ingle, Jr, 2005, “Evaluation of redox indicators for determining sulfate-reducing and dechlorinating conditions”, Water Research, 39, 4343-435.
  • Kim, Y. and L. Semprini, 2005, "Cometabolic Transformation of cis-1,2-dichloroethylene and cis-1,2-dichloroethylene epoxide by a butane-grown mixed culture", Water Science & Technology, 52 (8), 125-131.
  • Niemet, M.R., and L. Semprini, 2005, “Column Studies of Anaerobic Carbon Tetrachloride Biotransformation with Hanford Aquifer Material,” Ground Water Monitoring Remediation, 25(3), 82-92.
    Schroth, M.H., J.D. Istok, 2005, "Approximate solution for solute transport during spherical-flow push-pull tests", Ground Water, 43(2), 280-284.
  • Yu, S. M.E. Dolan, and L. Semprini, 2005, “Kinetics and Inhibition of Reductive Dechlorination of Chlorinated Ethylenes by Two Different Mixed Cultures,” Environmental Science & Technology, 39, 195-205.

Ph.D. Theses:

  • Benekos, I.D., August 2005, "On the determination of transverse dispersivity: Experiments and simulations in a helix and a cochlea", Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University.
  • Luo, J., December 2005, "Hydraulic control and reactive transport simulations for in situ bioremediation of uranium-contaminated groundwater", Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University.
  • Razzetti, C. 2005. "Cometabolic degradation of 1,1,1-trichloroethane and 1,1-dichloroethane by a butane grown Rhodococcus species: kinetic studies, reactor operation and modeling". Ph.D. Thesis, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Bologna.

December 2005 - New Research Brief on Transverse Dispersion Available

This short web article describes a novel approach for determining transverse dispersion, a process important for dilution and mixing of contaminants in groundwater. The brief describes research by Peter Kitanidis and his research team at Stanford University. Their experiments with helical and cochlear devices suggest that the rate of pore-scale transverse dispersivity may be greater than the values often assumed in aquifer modeling and cleanup simulations. Read more...http://wrhsrc.oregonstate.edu/briefs/brief_9.htm

September 2005 - New Research Brief on Aerobic Cometabolism with Butane-Grown Microorganisms

This short web article describes Center research on aerobic cometabolism, an emerging cleanup technology that utilizes microorganisms to degrade TCE and other chloroethenes. Research Brief #8 describes studies by Dan Arp and Peter Bottomley and their research team at Oregon State University. The term cometabolism indicates that transformation of the contaminants is a secondary reaction. The microbes consume a hydrocarbon, such as butane for their energy needs. In the process, they produce enzymes that fortuitously degrade other compounds such as TCE.

August 2005 - WRHSRC Researchers present at ISSM 2005

In August, many WRHSRC researchers presented at the Joint International Symposia for Subsurface Microbiology (ISSM 2005) and Environmental Biogeochemistry (ISEB XVII) in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Their presentations included the following:

  • Solvent Mixtures by Bioaugmented Butane-Utilizing Microorganisms -- M. E. Dolan, L. Semprini, Oregon State University; P. L. McCarty, G. Hopkins, Stanford University.
  • Factors Controlling In Situ Uranium and Technetium Bio-Reduction and Reoxidation -- J. D. Istok, Oregon State University; L. Krumholz, University of Oklahoma; A. Peacock, University of Tennessee; J. McKinley, Pacific Northwest National Laboratories.
  • Haldane Inhibitions of Reductive Dechlorination at High CAH Concentrations -- S. Yu, L. Semprini, Oregon State University.
  • Alkynes as Reversible Inhibitors for Probing Mechanisms of Reductive Dehalogenation of Chloroethenes -- A. R. Sabalowsky, L. Semprini, Oregon State University.
  • A Continuous Flow Column Study of Anaerobic PCE Transformation with the Evanite Culture and Hanford Aquifer Solids -- L. Semprini, A. Mohammad, A. Sabalowsky, M. Dolan, P. Ruiz-Hass, J. Ingle, Oregon State University; S. Behrens, A. Spormann, Stanford University.
  • Much Ado About Upscaling: Microbiology to Engineering Science and Back Again -- T. Ginn, K. Scow, University of California at Davis; B. Wood, Oregon State University.
  • Evaluation of Fluoroethene as an Analogue for Aerobic Vinyl Chloride Degradation -- A. E. Taylor, L. Semprini, P. J. Bottomley, M. Dolan, Oregon State University.
  • Evaluation of In Situ Aerobic Cometabolism of Chlorinated Ethenes by Toluene-Utilizing Microorganisms Using Push-Pull Tests -- M. F. Azizian, J. Istok, L. Semprini, Oregon State University.

For abstracts and the complete symposium program visit http://www.issm-iseb.org/ .

August 2005 - WRHSRC Researchers Help Launch Oregon State University's Subsurface Biosphere Initiative

This summer, OSU launched an initiative to expand research and teaching about the subsurface biosphere. The University will invest $1.5 million over five years in the program -- funding will support new faculty hires and encourage collaboration between researchers and students in five colleges. WRHSRC Director Lewis Semprini and many other Center researchers were involved in development of the initiative. It is one of six research areas that will be promoted as part of the University's Strategic Plan. For more information visit the following links:

March 2005 - New Research Brief on Soil and Mineral Nanopores

This short web article describes Center research on the role of soil and mineral nanopores in contaminant fate and transport. Research Brief #7 describes studies by Martin Reinhard and his research team at Stanford University. Nanopores are tiny voids (<10 nanometers across) that may store molecules of contaminants and prevent their transformation.

January 2005 - New Research Brief on Chemical Delivery and Aquifer Mixing Available

This short web article describes Center research on technologies that promote aquifer mixing. Research Brief #6 describes studies by Peter Kitanidis and his research team at Stanford University to develop computer models that help practitioners visualize aquifer conditions and design treatment systems that enhance aquifer mixing. The article contains links to downloadable modeling tools.

December 2004 - WRHSRC Director to Speak at EPA Region 9

Lewis Semprini, Director of the Western Region HSRC will be in the EPA Region 9 office in San Francisco on Wednesday, December 15th from 1-2pm to discuss in-situ remediation techniques for chlorinated solvents and their application to Superfund, RCRA, and Brownfields projects. Included will be discussions on field demonstration conducted at McClellan Air Field and Moffett Federal Air Field. The talk will be in the American Samoa conference room (1st floor).

October 2004 - Center to Participate in US EPA-HSRC Workshop on Risk Assessment and Monitoring Research, November 4-5, Las Vegas, Nevada

WRHSRC researchers will join others from the US EPA and the Hazardous Substance Research Centers to review and discuss research efforts by the HSRC's and the National Exposure Research Laboratory. The meeting will help foster collaboration between scientists and review the state of the science and research needs for risk assessment and monitoring. Two presentations will be given by WRHSRC researchers. Martin Reinhard, from Stanford University, will speak about The Role of Micropore Structure in Contaminant Sorption and Desorption and Jim Ingle, from Oregon State University, will speak about Monitoring Redox Status in Dechlorinating Cultures and Bioaugmented Aquifer Material (for more about this work, see Research Brief 1 and Research Brief 5).

Following this workshop, the WRHSRC will also hold its annual meeting with its Scientific Advisory Committee.

September 2004 - Two New Research Briefs Available

The WRHSRC's latest research briefs focus on anaerobic reductive dechlorination of TCE and PCE. The process shows potential for in situ treatment of contaminant source zones. Research Brief #4 describes studies to define the kinetics and inhibition of the dechlorination reactions and Research Brief #5 describes efforts to develop "push-pull" tests to monitor treatment sites.

January 2004 - Five New Projects Funded

WRHSRC researchers will begin five new projects this month. Two of the projects (2-OSU-05 and 2-OSU-07) deal with intrinsic and enhanced bioremediation of chlorinated solvents under aerobic and anaerobic conditions. One project is developing field methods for site characterization (2-OSU-06). This project will develop field redox sensors that will also be used in project 2-OSU-07. The final two projects are dealing with important transport processes of dispersion and sorption: Project 2-SU-04 will investigate transport and dispersive mixing, while project 2-SU-05 will investigate mechanisms for slow sorption and desorption from aquifer materials.

The projects will be funded for two years and were selected by the Center’s Science Advisory Committee during the Center’s annual meeting in August 2003.

Click on the titles below to link to project abstracts:

2-OSU-05: Aerobic Cometabolism of Chlorinated Ethenes by Microorganisms that Grow on Organic Acids and Alcohols. Peter Bottomley, PI; Daniel Arp, Mark Dolan, Lewis Semprini, Co-PIs, Oregon State University

2-OSU-06: Development and Evaluation of Field Sensors for Monitoring Anaerobic Dehalogenation After Bioaugmenatation. James Ingle, PI, Oregon State University

2-OSU-07: Continuous-Flow Column Studies of Reductive Dehalogenation with Two Different Enriched Cultures: Kinetics, Inhibition, and Monitoring of Microbial Activity. Lewis Semprini, PI, Oregon State University, Mark Dolan, Co-PI, Oregon State University, Alfred Spormann, Co-PI, Stanford University.

2-SU-04: Novel Methods for Laboratory Measurement of Transverse Dispersion in Porous Media. Peter K. Kitanidis, PI; Craig Criddle, Stanford Co-PI, Stanford University

2-SU-05: The Role of Micropore Structure in Contaminant Sorption and Desorption. Martin Reinhard, PI, Stanford University.

December 2003 - 2003 Annual Report Available

The WRHSRC's 2003 Annual Report is now available. It reviews progress on the Center's research and outreach programs. Click here to download the report (in pdf format). A list of previous annual reports is also available for download.

December 2003 - Research Brief on Cometabolism Available

The WRHSRC's Research Brief #3 profiles center research on cometabolism – a process where microbes create chemical conditions that degrade contaminants. The brief focuses on a field study of microbes that grow on butane and clean up the toxic solvent 1,1,1-Trichloroethane (1,1,1-TCA).

July 2003 - Research Brief on Palladium Catalysts Available

Research Brief #2 profiles Dr. Martin Reinhard's research on the use of palladium catalysts to cleanup groundwater contaminated with halogenated volatile organic compounds.

July 2003 - WRHSRC Researcher Interviewed for a Bioremediation Story in the San Francisco Chronicle

Dr. Craig Criddle (Stanford University) was interviewed for a story about bioremediation of uranium contamination. The article describes some of his work at Oak Ridge National Labs in Tennessee. Link to the article online .

June 2003 - 7th International Symposium on In Situ and On-Site Bioremediation

The WRHSRC was a participating organization at this symposium which was held June 2-5, 2003 in Orlando, Florida. For more information visit the conference website.

March 2003 - Research Brief on Redox Sensors Now Available

In March 2003, the Center began producing Research Briefs, short summaries of Center research projects, written for environmental managers and cleanup practicioners. Research Brief #1 focuses on Dr. Jim Ingle's work to develop field tools to measure redox potential in aquifers.

March 2003 - Searchable WRHSRC Publications Database Now Available

In March 2003 we launched an on-line database of sponsored research projects and their products and publications. You can search the database for projects and publications completed between 1989 and 2001. We are in the process of adding more recent publications and encourage person's affiliated with the Center to email corrections and additions to Garrett Jones, garrett.jones@oregonstate.edu.

February 2003 - New Website on Push-Pull Tests for Site Characterization and Remedial Design Available

In February 2003, center researcher Jack Istok created a new website on his team's research on push-pull tests. These tests involve injection (“push”) of a prepared test solution into an aquifer followed by the extraction (“pull”) of the test solution/groundwater mixture from the same location. The website includes project descriptions and lists of publications.

January 2003 - Centerpoint, the National HSRC 2002 Newsletter is Now Available

The latest issue of the Centerpoint newsletter is now available online. It highlights news events at the phase-two hazardous substance research centers. The WRHSRC is one of the five HSRC centers awarded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2002.

August 2002 - Annual Meeting held August 20-21, 2002

The 2002 annual summer meeting of the Western Region Hazardous Substance
Research Center was held at Oregon State between August 20-21. The meeting brought together the Center's Science and Outreach Advisory Board members, research scientists, and outreach specialists.

For more information, read the attached e-news story or contact Garrett Jones.

July 2002 - News Story Highlights the Need for Programs like TOSC

On July 11, 2002, the Environmental News Service ran a story on the need for advisors to assist communities affected by hazardous waste clean up. The article focused on Yurom Cohen, a researcher from UCLA, and his experience working with the Montrose neighborhood in Los Angeles, CA. For the full story click here. Dr. Cohen worked with the WRHSRC's Technical Outreach Services for Communities (TOSC) program and helped the Montrose community review DDT clean up efforts in their neighborhood.

March 2002 - WRHSRC Abstracts and Final Reports available online at EPA

Approximately 180 Original Abstracts and Final Reports for the Western Region Hazardous Substance Research Center were added to the US EPA website in March 2002. Topic Categories include Drinking Water, General Solicitation: Exploratory Research, Human Health, P2 and New Technologies, Water and Watersheds.

October 2001 - A New Era for the WRHSRC

In October 2001 the WRHSRC entered a new era. Center management moved from Stanford University to Oregon State University and Lewis Semprini, OSU Professor of Environmental Engineering, assumed the role of Center Director. Center researchers remain on both campuses and will begin new research projects this year.

These changes came as a result of a new 5-year cycle of funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Universities around the country competed to be one of five region-based Hazardous Substance Research Centers. Funding for the Stanford/Oregon State partnership was renewed, allowing it to continue its 10-year tradition of providing environmental cleanup expertise for the western region.

You can read more about it on other websites:

For more background information about the WRHSRC, click here.

2002 Graduate Fellowships Available through the IGERT Program

Fellowships for doctoral study with WRHSRC researchers are available through the National Science Foundation's IGERT program. Faculty at Oregon State and Portland State University received a 5 year, 2.6 million dollar grant to support education programs on subsurface, microbial processes. Applications for Fall 2002 graduate fellowships in engineering, microbiology, geology, oceanography, geochemistry, soil science and hydrology needed to be received by March 15, 2002. For more information, visit the Subsurface Biosphere IGERT program web site.

2001 HSRC Newsletter

The national program of the Hazardous Substances Research Centers (HSRC) released their annual newletter in October 2001. It highlights research and outreach accomplishments for each regional center and summarizes lessons learned in the HSRC's first dozen years. You can download the newsletter or visit the National HSRC web page to learn more about the national program.