Research Overview

The primary focus of my research is Environmental Chemistry and I have expertise in the Solid Waste Management domain. I have conducted research to understand the chemical and biological processes in solid waste treatment and disposal systems. Waste management has a critical role in achieving a sustainable built environment. Despite increasing public interest in diverting municipal solid waste (MSW) from landfills by recycling, biological treatment (composting, anaerobic digestion) and combustion, landfilling remains the dominant disposal alternative in the U.S. and many other countries throughout Asia, accounting for more than 50% of the 268 million tons of MSW generated in the US. I am interested in understanding the interaction of solid waste management systems such as landfills with natural and other engineered systems by exploring impacts on soil, air, and water quality. On a fundamental level, my research focuses on compound-level characterization of a large subset of chemicals found in leachate and landfill gas. This information has overarching implications for human health from exposure to contaminated water and air emissions.

Role of waste management in achieving a sustainable built environment and for the protection of human health and the environment.

Research presentaion on “Evidence of thermophilic waste decomposition at a landfill exhibiting elevated temperature regions” at the International Symposium on Waste Management and Sustainable Landfilling, 2019, Sardinia, Italy. This research suggests that methanogenic activity at an elevated temperature landfill can be attributed to microorganisms of genus Methanothermobacter

Research Interests

Emerging contaminants in solid waste, soil, leachate/wastewater and landfill gas (e.g., PFAS, 1,4-Dioxane, microplastics)
NMR- and HRMS-based Non-target analysis
Chemical and biological processes in landfills
Waste Management and Climate Change
Biomass Carbon Removal and Storage (BiCRS)
Circular Economy