Environmental Behavior of ENM in Waters and Sediments


Lead: Frank von der Kammer, University of Vienna

WP8 considers aquatic systems as a receiving, transforming and transporting medium into which engineered nanomaterials (ENM) may be released via different routes. The ENM input into aquatic systems occurs either

  • directly, e.g. through the use of Nano-TiO2 containing sunscreen in natural waters
  • by atmospheric deposition, e.g. CeO2 NPs released from vehicles
  • by runoff from soils which e.g. carries ENMs used in agriculture
  • from managed waste streams.

These input sources are covered by work packages 4, 5, 6 and 7. WP8 investigates ENM behaviour and fate in fresh waters, the estuarine mixing zone and marine systems. Furthermore we study the behaviour in sediments, especially sediment pore waters, which represent strong spatial gradients of several hydrochemical parameters which control particle agglomeration and transformation.

To construct models which are able to ultimately predict the dynamic behaviour and fate of ENMs in surface waters, data are required on the rates of key controlling processes. These are predominantly hetero-agglomeration with suspended particulate matter, the transformation of the ENMs and their dissolution. Experimental setups are constructed and aligned with other international activities such as those of the OECD to quantify the relevant processes and deliver parameters suitable for the models developed by NanoFASE. WP8 aims to adapt the existing and deliver the missing quantitative information on NP behaviour and transformation in natural waters and sediments, tailored to the needs of the multimedia fate modelling.