About the Project
Manufactured nanomaterials have been introduced into the environment through various products because of their unique properties. The impact of nanoparticles on ecosystems is a new area of investigation for scientists and offers an opportunity for original and authentic investigations. This investigation was an introduction to nanomaterials, their life cycle, methods of research and the possible impacts of nanoparticles on the ecosystem. It was also an opportunity to learn from Rochester Institute of Technology scientists that are conducting this research. Our goal is to contribute what we have learned to the public’s understanding of nanoparticles.
Pollution and Ecotoxicology
Pollution is one of the most common problems that the environment is currently facing. Pollution is caused when substance go into the environment and cause undesirable effects. Some current pollution have majorly impacted water, land, and air. Water pollution happens when chemicals or dangerous foreign substances are introduced to water, including chemicals, sewage, pesticides and fertilizers from agricultural runoff, while land can become polluted by household garbage and by industrial waste. Air pollution occurs when things that aren’t normally there are added to the air. A common type of air pollution happens when people release particles into the air from burning fuels.
Ecotoxicology is the study of harmful effects of chemicals on ecosystems. Ecotoxicology combine the ecological and toxicological effects of chemical pollutants on populations, communities, and ecosystems as well as the long/short term impact on the environment. Toxicology study the adverse effects of chemical substances on living organisms and their environment. Ecotoxicologists study what happens to the substance ( containments/pollutants) themselves, where they go in the environment, how long they last, and how they finally break down.
As part of our unit on pollution, we have been studying the varied varied containment that are being added to the environment. These containments such as salt and TiO2 have been introduced into the environment in such other purposes. It had not been addressed if the benefits of these contaminants can outweigh the harmful effect or the other way around. Currently we are doing an experiment to test the impact of salt and TiO2 on Daphnia and Lumbriculus. So excited to see the results. - Eman Muthana
"Ecotoxicity is the the study of the effects of toxic substances and pollutants in the environment."
Stage 3: LD50 Experiments
For the final stage of our project graduate students - Liz Wronko, Sarah Ponte Cabral and Charles Border visited our class to help us set up our LD50 experiments. These experiments model the work they do in the lab and were designed to give us a better understanding of how toxicity of substances is assessed.
"LD50 is how much it takes to kill 50% of test samples"