Reem Khan, a Chemistry Ph.D. Candidate at Clarkson University is one of the three winners in the student presentation at the 31st International Conference on Soil, Water, Energy and Air under the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences (AEHS).
AEHS is a professional organization that provides an international forum for environmental professionals to discuss and develop a common ground for the presentation and debate of important information related to soil, water, and air contamination and advance awareness of environmental issues. The AEHS network spans professional disciplines from across the U.S. and abroad including biology, chemistry, geology, engineering, and regulatory science. AEHS encourages the international community to adopt and maintain environmentally sound and sustainable practices. Three winners are selected every year to receive a monetary award and attend the award ceremony at the annual AEHS meeting, where the awards are announced. The presentations are judged by a panel of judges on the basis of scientific merit, the value of the project and the student presentation.
Khan’s presentation described the development of a low-cost ultrasensitive method for PFAS detection in drinking water. PFASs are a group of man-made chemicals, which are very persistent in the environment and human body, and can lead to adverse health effects. This class of chemicals is difficult to measure due to their low levels, requiring detection at the advisory levels of parts per trillion. Improved measurement technologies are needed to achieve greater speed and lower the cost of analysis, and to provide remote real-time capabilities.
Khan is a graduate student in Professor Silvana Andreescu’s Lab in the Chemistry and Biomolecular Science department. “This award is a recognition of our efforts and Reem’s contribution to the development of electrochemical methods for PFAS detection,” says Andreescu. Khan’s work is a portion of a larger project which aims to develop low-cost sensors to more easily monitor environmental contaminants and quantifying water pollution.