Faculty Project Proposal Summary
Calendar Year 2014 Program
Faculty Name & Department/School: Stacey Harper, Environmental and Molecular Toxicology and the School of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering
Research Project Title: Measuring the relative hydrophobicity of nanomaterials using a competitive dye assay
Project Overview: The project aims to determine the relative hydrophobicity of nanomaterials by looking at changes in the amount of a free hydrophobic dye (Rose Bengal) and free hydrophilic dye (Nile Blue) after incubation with nanoparticles. The method assumes that the free dye in solution is stable over the incubation and that any change in the amount of free dye after nanomaterials are put into the dye, filtered and removed, represents the amount of the hydrophobic/hydrophilic dye that attached to the nanomaterials during incubation. The hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity of nanomaterials is an important predictor of nanomaterial fate and transport in the environment as well as its interactions with living systems.
What skills will students obtain in this project? Standard laboratory skills such as pipetting, dilutions, etc.; keep good laboratory records; laboratory safety; ultracentrifugation methods; establishing standard curves; dynamic light scattering techniques; calculations for surface area; statistical analyses and graphing; spectrophotometric methods and microscopy.
Student research tasks: Student will be responsible for making dilutions, prepping nanomaterials, measuring size distribution, incubating nanoparticles in the dye solutions, ultracentrifugation of the solution, measuring dye concentrations, calculating a partitioning quotient, analyzing and graphing data, and determining relative hydrophobicity.
Number of hours per week expected of student: ~15
Preferred Faculty Contact Information (email): Stacey.Harper@oregonstate.edu
Download student application HERE
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