A Remote and Affordable Detection System for Cr(VI) in Groundwater

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Eltron Research, Inc.
4600 Nautilus Court South
Boulder, CO 80301
Principal Investigator
Firm POC


72353S03-I Chromium (Cr) contamination represents a major problem for DOE facilities and the plating industry. Because electrochemical detection of Cr in water has been shown to be a cost-effective method for the long-term, remote monitoring of environmental contamination sites, this project will develop a robust electrochemical monitoring system for the detection of hexavalent chromium in groundwater and surface water. The remote probing device will use electrochemical and microfluidic technology to enable the rapid, in situ detection of chromium, and the device will be adaptable to portable surface monitoring and down-hole applications. Phase I will identify successful strategies for the fabrication of a miniaturized electrochemical detection system using microelectrode arrays and a Cr(VI) selective polymer film. Device performance for chromium detection will be characterized under a variety of possible sample conditions, especially those of interest to DOE sites. The response time, sensitivity, and detection limits of the device will be evaluated. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by awardee: The chromium sensor should be applicable to groundwater and surface contamination problems relevant to DOE needs. This approach could also find use in EPA applications and those of the private sector, for example, the monitoring of chromium waste in the electroplating industry. Other industries requiring wastewater monitoring of chromium include metal processing, galvanic plants, tanneries, wood preservation, chemical manufacturing, aerospace, and electronics.