HAB Early Mitigation by Magnetic Photocatalysts

Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL

Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL team photo
Frequent outbreaks of harmful algal blooms (HABs) have impacted human health, economic viability, as well as recreational activities of many communities in the U.S. In this study described in the video below, HABs would be mitigated by early detection following mitigation strategy using magnetic photocatalysts – γFe2O3/TiO2 for the first time. Communities impacted by HAB outbreaks would benefit from the project by increasing their resilience to these events.

Student Investigators are Nafeesa Khan, Peerzada Madany, Chunjie Xia, Sudip Baral, Ishani M. Senanayake, Di Wu, Supria Sarkar, and Linkon Bhattacharjee. PI and Co-PIs are Dr. Jia Liu (Environmental Engineering), Dr. Ruopu Li (Geography), Dr. Kang Chen (Electrical and Computer Engineering), and Dr. Boyd M. Goodson (Chemistry).

EPA P3 Video Presentation

Poster (click to open a full size image): 
HAB Early Mitigation by Magnetic Photocatalysts poster

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) are often associated with high concentrations of cyanobacteria, which can produce cyanotoxins that are harmful to humans, as well as to pets, fish, birds, and other wildlife. In particular, HABs seriously affect the resilience of our communities from using the surface water resources for recreational purposes. In this study, HABs will first be monitored by qPCR tests following automatic sample collection, and an aerial drone in their early stage, then the photocatalysts will be used for early HABs mitigation by cyanobacteria inactivation, cyanotoxin photodegradation, and the nutrient phosphorus absorption. The photocatalysts could be recycled by their magnetic properties for reuse. Successful completion of the Phases I project would demonstrate the effectiveness to mitigate HABs in early-stage in freshwaters by the magnetic photocatalysts – γFe2O3/TiO2, as well as by the early monitoring strategy.