Strickland wins EPA STAR Fellowship

July 22, 2011

Environmental engineering graduate student Matt Strickland won an EPA STAR Fellowship that will provide $42,000 per year for three years. Matt is studying biofiltration of waste gasses containing dilute concentrations of methane by utilizing a biphasic reactor. A biphasic reactor contains bacteria growing in a mineral salts medium and a non-miscible second phase such as silicone oil. Synthetic waste gas containing methane is bubbled through the biphasic liquid emulsion and the presence of the oil facilitates transfer of methane gas into the liquid phase, where it is bioavailable. One secondary goal of this project is to engineer a method for biologically converting methane into methanol which could be collected and sold as a useful commodity. Matt is a student of Professor Marc Deshusses.