You are here

Learning Curves With Exponential Growth

One word: Wow!

Before starting this internship I did not appreciate the truth of how quickly the first week would pass. There is a false sense of security that comes with having 40 hours to complete one seemingly simple task. And, as with any new adventure, trial and error has become a common theme with my science thus far.

During the next 9 weeks our group (Dr. Rick Johnson, Amanda Mather, and I) will be looking at the transport of particles, such as nanoscale zerovalent iron (NZVI), through granular media (commonly known as sand). Now reader, if you have made it this far in my blog, you may be asking yourself: Why do I care about the movement of particles through sand? To that I would answer that one interesting application is the use of NZVI slurries as an in situ treatment of contaminated groundwater.

Applications of understanding particle transport through granular media are not limited to groundwater remediation. The science is critical to the ongoing evaluation of riverine and estuarine ecological health. To that end, this project supports The Center for Coastal Margin Observation and Prediction (CMOP) vision to be a leader in advancing predictive science of coastal margin ecosystems. Empirically characterizing particle transport in subsurface environments will establish the theoretical framework behind which predictive models of particle transport can be formed. Subsurface particle transport models can be used in collaboration with tools of other disciplines to provide a scientific approach of coastal margin ecosystem management.

I hope the end results of this project will support future efforts of CMOP and the environmental sciences in general. I look forward to the many mistakes I will make along the way, and the increasing value of the lessons learned therein. Thanks for reading.