Chemistry Seminar with Professor Jeff Catalano of Washington University at 4:00pm
Chemical reactions at the interface between water and metal oxide mineral surfaces affect an array of environmental processes, including contaminant fate and transport, nutrient availability, carbon cycling and sequestration, critical element resource generation, and nanoparticle mobilization. The interfacial region represents a chemical and structural transition zone. Water molecules adjacent to the surface occupy discrete positions but this ordering decays to that of the random, bulk fluid over ~1 nanometer. In this presentation, I will review how interfacial water structure varies among aluminum and iron oxide surfaces, how it affects and responds to the adsorption of the contaminant arsenate, and how molecular interactions at these interfaces generates selectivity patterns among a key set of critical elements, the lanthanides.