Superfund Research Program
Composite Integrative Passive Sampler (CIPS)
Project Leader: Damian Shea
Co-Investigator: Xin Xia
Grant Number: R43ES030662
Funding Period: Phase I: April 2019 - April 2020
Environmental exposure to chemicals has been linked to serious human health problems, contributing to as many as 1.3 million deaths (and 5 to 10 percent of all disease burden) globally each year, as well as high economic costs ($340 billion in the U.S. and $163 billion in the E.U.). Much of this exposure comes from contaminated water, and, in the U.S. alone, there are 155,000 public drinking water systems and 16,000 municipal wastewater systems that discharge to surface water; each of these is required by regulators to monitor for chemicals. At the same time, we know that nearly all human health risks from organic chemicals in drinking water are due to low-concentration, long-term chronic exposure and not short-term acute poisonings. This poses a technical challenge to detect trace levels of chemicals (e.g., low ng/L) and provide a long-term average exposure when temporal variability often can be 1-3 orders of magnitude from one sampling event to another (e.g., monthly grab sampling). The founders of Statera have invented a novel concept of fabricating a mixed-phase polymer PSD (patent pending): the Composite Integrative Passive Sampler (CIPS). CIPS is composed of a continuous mesoporous sorptive phase embedded in a supporting microfiber membrane that sequesters both polar and nonpolar organic chemicals from water. CIPS is a new generation of PSD that will overcome key limitations of competing technology and revolutionize environmental monitoring for organic chemicals in water, with the potential for further applications in air, soil, and sediment. The overall aim of this Phase I project is to develop an initial CIPS prototype to accurately measure the TWA chronic exposure to over 200 chemicals in water (targeted quantitative analysis), assess the ability of CIPS to capture thousands of other organic chemicals in water (nontargeted qualitative analysis), and compare the performance of CIPS to existing technology.