PhD student Nicole Kennedy Neth and Dr. Keen traveled to Malmo, Sweden, to present their research at the International Water Association NOM 6 conference. Travel was funded by NSF travel award No. 1521562. Read more: The research presented showed that when organic matter is present in solution, it competes with trace pharmaceuticals for chlorine during disinfection of water. As a result, some of the chlorinated products of doxycycline observed in ultrapure water are not present in wastewater effluent matrix. Some of the products, the formation of which was inhibited by the organic matter, were those with antibiotic activity.
Additionally, research on organics in landfill leachate was presented. A large fraction of organics in landfill leachate is non-biodegradable by conventional processes. The research presented at the conference demonstrates some similarities between the leachate organics and plant matter derived organics, such as lignin. The similarities were found in the molecular size distribution and the fluorescence spectrum.