Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences
167 Fitzpatrick Hall
Areas of Interest
Prof. Fein’s research group is conducting two types of research projects:
Geomicrobiology: Determining the effects of bacteria on the fate and mobility of heavy metal and radionuclide contaminants in groundwater systems. We focus on the adsorption, redox, and precipitation reactions that occur in these systems and we take an experimental approach in order to isolate and model these reactions. The objective of the research is to derive thermodynamic and kinetic models that can account for reactions involving these metals under realistic geologic systems.
Solubility of Actinide-bearing mineral phases: Spent nuclear fuel and high level nuclear waste contain a number of actinide elements that are both toxic and high radioactive. The solubility of actinide-bearing mineral phases can control the mobility of the actinides that are (or will be) introduced into geologic systems. We are using solubility measurements, coupled with calorimetry, to determine the thermodynamic stabilities of environmentally relevant mineral phases. The objective is to construct a database that is extensive enough to accurately improve the predictive models for subsurface actinide transport.