2015 Progress Report: NCCLCs: Life Cycle of Nanomaterials (LCnano)

EPA Grant Number: RD835580
Title: NCCLCs: Life Cycle of Nanomaterials (LCnano)
Investigators: Westerhoff, Paul , Bennett, Ira , Fairbrother, D. Howard , Gilbertson, Leanne Marie , Herckes, Pierre , Hristovski, Kiril D , Hutchison, James E. , Lowry, Gregory V. , Plata, Desirée L. , Ranville, James , Seager, Thomas , Tanguay, Robert L. , Theis, Thomas L. , Wetmore, Jameson , Wiesner, Mark R. , Zimmerman, Julie B.
Institution: Arizona State University - Main Campus , Carnegie Mellon University , Colorado School of Mines , Duke University , Oregon State University , The Johns Hopkins University , University of Illinois at Chicago , University of Oregon , University of Pittsburgh , Yale University
EPA Project Officer: Lasat, Mitch
Project Period: March 19, 2014 through March 18, 2018
Project Period Covered by this Report: December 1, 2014 through November 30,2015
Project Amount: $5,000,000
RFA: EPA/NSF Networks for Characterizing Chemical Life Cycle (NCCLCs) (2013) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Endocrine Disruptors , Safer Chemicals

Objective:

Because engineered nanomaterials (NMs) have transformative benefits to individuals and society, they are being incorporated into many products. However, tremendous uncertainty presently exists in our ability to predict or manage risks from nano-enabled products across their life cycles. This project involves an interdisciplinary team of chemists, toxicologists, scientists, engineers, and social scientists to evaluate the trade-offs between intended function of NMs in products and risks to humans and the environment across their life cycle from creation, through use and disposal.

We hypothesize that the desirable physicochemical properties that create unique NM functionality also can influence inherent hazards and potential exposure routes. LCnano’s overarching goal is to elucidate NM property-exposure and property-hazard relationships from a life cycle perspective and to provide predictive models for unintended implications of NMs that will improve design of safe nano-enabled products and processes. To inform risk managers, LCnano will employ high throughput functional assays to quantify material attributes that serve as proxies for short- and long-term risk (material exposure, hazard, reactivity, and distribution). To inform designers of nano-enabled products about balances between performance and risk, LCnano will evaluate nano-enabled products for facilitating direct and translational methods in the development of material property-exposure and property-hazard relationships for identifying and subsequently minimizing risk for a wide array of existing products, helping ensure sustainable design of future, transformative nano-enabled products. 

Progress Summary:

This year significant progress was made across all four product lines and multiple types of nanoparticles. Research activities were organized and structured around workplans with each university partner in the network contributing to part of the workplan. In Year 2, work continued on the four workplans initiated in Year 1: 1) nano-silver coated fabrics, 2) chemical-mechanical planarization nanoparticles (NPs) used for polishing, 3) nano-silver impregnated polymers, and 4) nano TiO2 and SiO2 in foods.

We completed research on four nano-silver fabrics that culminated in publications and presentations on both life cycle assessment and experimental results investigating the efficacy of the nanomaterials and the potential release and risk of the nanomaterials. The team now has centered around the theme of balanced risk-efficacy tradeoffs of “nanotizing” products and comparing nanotechnology enhanced products against chemically-enhanced products that have similar intended functionality (e.g., antimicrobial activity). The silver workplan has been completed. 

We completed work on SiO2 nanomaterials in food and published a paper that will come out in STOTEN in 2016. This builds our product line 2 (NPs dispersed in foods and creams) work. We also collaborated with a non-governmental organization to characterize nanomaterials in fresh fruits, foods from Australia, and other products. Results will be published in 2016. We successfully secured additional NSF-GOALI funding and co-funding from the semi-conductor research corporation to expand our investigation of the interaction of III/V ions with CMP nanoparticles as part of product line 1.

We developed SOPs for a number of functional assays that were applied to six uniquely different nanoparticles. These assays provide a nanoparticle fingerprint in the form of radar plots to assess physical characteristics, distribution in environmental compartments across their life cycle, unique nanoscale properties, and biological hazard. Preliminary results were presented in November 2015 and are being integrated into journal publications.

We initiated parallel testbeds by placing ambient exposure weathering stations on three university campuses geographically located across the United States (Arizona, Colorado, and Maryland) to evaluate natural weathering of nano-enabled products. This will be expanded to sites in Pennsylvania and Oregon in 2016. These rooftop testbeds are equipped with replicate holders where samples of polymer composites, some containing nanoparticles, are placed and exposed to the atmosphere. We have identical weather stations at each site to track metrological conditions. We collect samples in jars beneath each sample and measure/characterize released nanomaterials in the collection jars as well is in the polymer sample itself.

We initiated and successfully had multiple Ph.D. student and post-doc lab exchanges. These were designed for 1 week of intensive cross-university research. This has helped our team come together and understand each other's resources and research approaches. This will continue in 2016 and lead to several joint network publications.

We identified a new application in one of our four product lines. As a network, we decided to examine quantum dots in display products. We will first conduct an LCA, and use it to identify numerical data gaps. Then, we will design experiments to fill in the needed data.

We have initiated several workplans to compare chemical to nano alternatives that achieve specific functions. These include trade-offs between brominated flame retardant coated fabrics and CNT coated fabrics for flame retardancy. Burn and release tests have been conducted and aim to fill in data gaps identified in an EPA case study on flame retardancy. Another workplan was initiated to compare organic sunblock against nano TiO2 or ZnO sunblock. These workplans are pushing our analytical detection of released nanoproducts, and results are leading to comparisons of ecosystem risks from each product across its life cycle.

We have monthly teleconference calls as a network, one annual meeting, and had excellent attendance at an Environmental Nanotechnology Gordon Conference (chaired by Westerhoff) and the Sustainable Nanotech Organization Conference (chaired by Lowry and Hutchinson) in 2015. 

Future Activities:

We do not anticipate any changes in plans or schedules. The team has completed several workplans (Ag fabrics, CMP nanoparticles, SiO2 in foods, CNTs in polymers, etc.) and developed several new workplans as outlined above. We will apply our functional assays to nanoparticles released across the life cycle of nano-enabled products. We have developed a joint view of the large-scale outcome from our network, which will be strategies for product designers and life cycle researchers to weigh the efficacy of nano-enabled products not only against their risks, but also against chemical alternatives that achieve similar design-intended function. We continue to present and publish our research and are active in organizing national and international meetings related to environmental nanotechnology. 


Journal Articles on this Report : 16 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other project views: All 77 publications 16 publications in selected types All 16 journal articles
Type Citation Project Document Sources
Journal Article Bisesi Jr. JH, Merten J, Liu K, Parks AN, Afrooz AR, Glenn JB, Klaine SJ, Kane AS, Saleh NB, Ferguson PL, Sabo-Altwood T. Tracking and quantification of single-walled carbon nanotubes in fish using near infrared fluorescence. Environmental Science & Technology 2014;48(3):1973-1983. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Corredor C, Borysiak MD, Wolfer J, Westerhoff P, Posner JD. Colorimetric detection of catalytic reactivity of nanoparticles in complex matrices. Environmental Science & Technology 2015;49(6):3611-3618. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Doudrick K, Nosaka T, Herckes P, Westerhoff P. Quantification of graphene and graphene oxide in complex organic matrices. Environmental Science: Nano 2015;2(1):60-67. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Faust JJ, Doudrick K, Yang Y, Westerhoff P, Capco DG. Food grade titanium dioxide disrupts 
intestinal brush border microvilli in vitro independent of sedimentation. Cell Biology and
 Toxicology 2014;30(3):169-188. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Gilbertson LM, Busnaina A, Isaacs JA, Zimmerman JB, Eckelman MJ. Life cycle impacts and benefits of a carbon nanotube-enabled chemical gas sensor. Environmental Science & Technology 2014;48(19):11360-11368. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Gilbertson LM, Zimmerman JB, Plata DL, Hutchison JE, Anastas PT. Designing nanomaterials to maximize performance and minimize undesirable implications guided by the Principles of Green Chemistry. Chemical Society Reviews 2015;44(16):5758-5777. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Gilbertson LM, Wender BA, Zimmerman JB, Eckelman, MJ. Coordinating modeling and experimental research of engineered nanomaterials to improve life cycle assessment studies. Environmental Science: Nano 2015;2(6):669-682. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Gilbertson LM, Melnikov F, Wehmas LC, Anastas PT. Tanguay RL, Zimmerman JB. Toward safer multi-walled carbon nanotube design: establishing a statistical model that relates surface charge and embryonic zebrafish mortality. Nanotoxicology 2016;10(1):10-19. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Hicks AL, Gilbertson LM, Yamani JS, Theis TL, Zimmerman JB. Life cycle payback estimates of nanosilver enabled textiles under different silver loading, release, and laundering scenarios informed by literature review. Environmental Science & Technology 2015;49(13):7529-7542. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Reed RB, Faust JJ, Yang Y, Doudrick K, Capco DG, Hristovski K, Westerhoff P. Characterization of nanomaterials in metal colloid-containing dietary supplement drinks and assessment of their potential interactions after ingestion. ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering 2014;2(7):1616-1624. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Reed RB, Zaikova T, Barber A, Simonich M, Lankone R, Marco M, Hristovski K, Herckes P, Passantino L, Fairbrother DH, Tanguay R, Ranville JF, Hutchison JE, Westerhoff PK. Potential environmental impacts and antimicrobial efficacy of silver- and nanosilver-containing textiles. Environmental Science & Technology 2016;50(7):4018-4026. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Speed D, Westerhoff P, Sierra-Alvarez R, Draper R, Pantano P, Aravamudhan S, Chen KL, Hristovski K, Herckes P, Bi X, Yang Y, Zeng C, Otero-Gonzalez L, Mikoryak C, Wilson BA, Kosaraju K, Tarannum M, Crawford S, Yi P, Liu X, Babu SV, Moinpour M, Ranville J, Montano M, Corredor C, Posner J, Shadman F. Physical, chemical, and in vitro toxicological characterization of nanoparticles in chemical mechanical planarization suspensions used in the semiconductor industry: towards environmental health and safety assessments.Environmental Science: Nano 2015;2(3):227-244. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Tiede K, Hanssen SF, Westerhoff P, Fern GJ, Hankin SM, Aitken RJ, Chaudhry Q, Boxall AB. How important is drinking water exposure for the risks of engineered nanoparticles to consumers? Nanotoxicology 2016;10(1):102-110. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Westerhoff P, Lee S, Yang Y, Gordon GW, Hristovski K, Halden RU, Herckes P. Characterization, recovery opportunities, and valuation of metals in municipal sludges from U.S. wastewater treatment plants nationwide. Environmental Science & Technology 2015;49(16):9479-9488. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Journal Article Yang Y, Wang Y, Hristovski K, Westerhoff P. Simultaneous removal of nanosilver and fullerene in sequencing batch reactors for biological wastewater treatment. Chemosphere 2015;125:115-121. RD835580 (2014)
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  • Journal Article Yang Y, Yu Z, Nosaka T, Doudrick K, Hristovski K, Herckes P, Westerhoff P. Interaction of carbonaceous nanomaterials with wastewater biomass. Frontiers of Environmental Science & Engineering 2015;9(5):823-831. RD835580 (2015)
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  • Supplemental Keywords:

    nanotechnology, exposure, risk, ecological effects, bioavailability, particulates, effluent, metals, aquatic, water, life cycle analysis, LCA, Bayesian, environmental chemistry, engineering, modeling, measurement methods, nano-enable products

    Relevant Websites:

    LCnano | Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering | Arizona State University / Exit

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
    2014 Progress Report