Water at Mineral Interfaces

Research Overview

The behavior of water at mineral surfaces is key to a wide range of phenomena of geo-chemical and industrial importance. For instance, the mineral-aqueous interface determines many properties that impact the cost and overall effectiveness of hydrocarbon recovery as well as the environmental impact of such processes.

Faculty Research

Borguet group uses a variety of laser and scanning probe techniques to probe mineral-water interfaces. Recent highlights include in-situ ultra-fast vibrational spectroscopy of the effect of reduced hydrogen bonding, electric fields and salt concentration on water at silica (SiO2) interfaces.

Davatzes group investigates the role of fractures in determine our access to hydrocarbon resources, fresh water and the spread of contaminants in aquifers.

Klein group is expert in understanding water structure and dynamics at complex interfaces. Recent work has investigated the role of nanoscale carbon particles and the stability of lipid bilayers.

Strongin group studies reactive mineral interfaces, such as pyrite (FeS2) that gives rise to acid mine drainage.

Zhang group targets the transformation and fate of emerging contaminants in natural and engineered environments. Specific interests include inter-facial reactions of organic contaminants with natural minerals and novel nanomaterials with a focus on reduction-oxidation processes, reaction mechanisms, kinetics and reaction product identification of organic contaminants.

Technical Capabilities

Non linear optics
Light scattering
Atomic Force Microscopy

Transmission Electron Microscope

Recent Publications

Identifying Indicators of Reactivity for Chemical Reductants in Natural Sediments
Huichun Zhang and Eric J. Weber
Environ. Sci. and Technol. 47,
6959-6968 (2013) DOI: 10.1021/es302662r

Hydration structure of salt solutions from ab initio molecular dynamics

Arindam Bankura, Vincenzo Carnevale and Michael L. Klein.
J. Chem. Phys., 138, 014501 (2013) DOI:10.1063/1.4772761


Ultra-broadband high signal-to-noise sum-frequency spectrometer of aqueous interfaces based on a non-collinear optical parametric amplifier.
Oleksandr Isaienko and Eric Borguet.
Optics Express, 20 (1), 547-561 (2012) DOI:10.1364/OE.20.000547

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