Knox AS, Petrisor IG, Turick CE, Roberts J, Paller MH, Reible D, Forrest CR. 2010. Life span of biopolymer sequestering agents for contaminant removal and erosion resistance. In: Biopolymers (Ed. by M. Elnashar), INTECH, ISBN 978-953-307-109-1, DOI: 10.5772/10259.
The objective of this paper is to report the development and life span of cross-linked biopolymers that remove contaminants, resist biodegradation over long periods of time, and resist erosion in dynamic aquatic environments. In this study biopolymers were evaluated for metal and organic contaminant removal, alone and in combination with soil/sediment, as potential candidate materials in active capping applications. This evaluation included the assessment of stability over time under varying environmental conditions (e.g., elevated temperature and moisture). Also evaluated were microbial effects on the properties of cross-linked biopolymers, and long term effects of selected cross-linked biopolymers on the mobility and retention of contaminants in sediments. Commercially available biopolymers that were evaluated in these laboratory studies included chitosan, xanthan, guar gum, and alginate. Cross-linking agents for these biopolymers included borax, xanthan, and calcium chloride. Since erosion control is a big part of successful remedial technology for contaminated sediments, e.g., active capping, the selected biopolymers were tested (as a slurry or coated on sand particles) for erosion resistance in the lab.