I was born in Farmington Hills, Michigan, however I lived for a few years in Delaware before moving to the southwest of the United States. I lived in Arizona for over a decade and completed my undergraduate education at the University of Arizona during the spring of 2016, where I majored in Chemistry and minored in Biochemistry.
I began studying Chemistry due to the challenge of the concepts and subject matter, which I became fascinated with throughout high school. At the University of Arizona, I had the chance to work in several different lab positions during my undergraduate. This ranged from a general caretaker of the lab to a student researcher. Although rewarding, these experiences showed me that I desired more intellectually stimulating work in place of preparatory labor, which manifested as a desire to attain a professional or graduate degree.
I am excited of the opportunity I have in performing research and furthering my education here at Colorado State University.
Analysis of Surfactants in Produced and Flowback Water Samples for Concentration and Separation
In the process of hydraulic fracturing, aqueous fluids are forced down into the shale formations and used to force out the oil and gas resources. These aqueous fluids can include chemical additives such as biocides and friction reducers to increase efficiency of the extraction, however these chemical additives have the potential to interact with and contaminate other nearby water sources or surface water. Although some hydraulic fracturing chemicals are made public, the fracturing fluids used are generally composed of a proprietary blend of chemicals. This can make it difficult to distinguish what effects the fracturing chemicals may be having on the quality of natural water around the shale formation or fracking site.
Ethylene oxide compounds have been identified in fracturing operations and analyzed using liquid chromatography/quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Ethylene oxides act as surfactants in the water and interfere with and mitigate the signal of other biocides and chemical additives present in the produced and flowback water samples. This project will address the need for a method to separate and concentrate the surfactants found in produced and flowback water samples in order to understand the complete composition of the aqueous solutions used in hydraulic fracturing and their potential implications.
For more details about the research conducted in the Borch group please click here.
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