Environmental Chem C

ldesiresl
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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by ldesiresl » December 28th, 2009, 8:35 pm

On the rulebook in section f it asks for the best course of remediation.

Does that mean that we have to examine a soil sample ourselves and determine the best course of remediation for that type of soil?

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by peoneill » December 29th, 2009, 12:40 pm

ldesiresl: I wouldn't think so. The lab portion of this event is highly constrained because 99% of what could be done requires hazardous materials - and that is NOT going to happen for a guest laboratory, especially not one for minors and in which they need to be able to explore and try to figure things out on their own! You could be asked to determine the pH or mineral content of a soil sample (which is simple, usually matching the color a strip turns when dipped into a sample of soil mixed into water) and asked how to improve or correct the land for those factors. Otherwise I anticipate remediation questions will primarily be left just as questions without lab component. A certain type of problem/contamination may be described to you and you could be asked how to best remedy it, or to describe the pros and cons of using a specific remediation technique in this situation, etc.

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by binary010101 » December 29th, 2009, 4:19 pm

packer-backer91 wrote:
iYOA wrote:i dont have a rules book with me right now so about the notes sheet:

is it supposed to be typed, handwritten or either?

This is how I interpret the rules that it can be anything as long as its one sheet of paper. The rules would have said that it must be handwritten if that is what they wanted.
You should be able to include pictures, as well.
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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by kjhsscioly » December 29th, 2009, 6:43 pm

ldesiresl wrote:On the rulebook in section f it asks for the best course of remediation.

Does that mean that we have to examine a soil sample ourselves and determine the best course of remediation for that type of soil?

often, there will be an NPK test to do, then it will ask what should be done to the soil in order to grow a particular crop. Remediation could also mean organic fertilizers, or based upon sand, clay, and silt.

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by puscat » January 27th, 2010, 1:37 pm

Do any of you know formulas to find porosity of soil, permeability, and water retention? Or how do you find those things?

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by Phenylethylamine » January 27th, 2010, 3:13 pm

puscat wrote:Do any of you know formulas to find porosity of soil, permeability, and water retention? Or how do you find those things?
Percent porosity = volume of pore space/total volume.
To find the pore volume, measure out a known volume of water and a known volume of soil. Pour the water into the the soil until the water level is even with the top of the soil, then subtract the remaining volume of water from the original volume of water to find the volume of water that went into the soil.

Permeability = distance traveled (cm)/time elapsed (sec)
That's straight off my reference sheet, written by my partner, and I'm not sure how you measure that one.
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kjhsscioly
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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by kjhsscioly » January 27th, 2010, 9:05 pm

the formulas for those ar eeasily found on Wikipedia

I was put into this event last minute, though i have competed in it before, but in B division

Has anyone figured out point H on the Rules. I cannot find anything about gas & mass spectrometry of soils

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by peoneill » January 31st, 2010, 12:45 pm

Have you seen the practice exam I've posted in the text exchange? I'm going to have a 2nd posted soon. I'm helping coordinate Environmental Chemistry at the Indiana State tournament and my answer key has some clues how to do some of the problems I asked about it.

There's a TON of information out there on MS and GC, much of which is very readable for high school students (but most of which ISN'T, you'll have to do some research to find good materials, but a lack of materials should NOT be the problem). If your event coordinators have been educators so far they're often frightened off from doing these topics, which are quite advanced and they're not likely to have been trained on. But if you get a professional soil chemist... these techniques are the bread and butter of their daily work in modern times and I guarantee that when a chemistry professional runs this event they'll be asking you questions on MS and GC. I'd anticipate more MS and GC questions at university-hosted tournaments than at high school-hosted tournaments.

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by kjhsscioly » January 31st, 2010, 6:32 pm

yay... we placed second at a major invites

it turns out that our event supervisor was the nationals supervisor in environmental chem.

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Re: Environmental Chem C

Post by packer-backer91 » February 18th, 2010, 9:01 pm

ldesiresl wrote:On the rulebook in section f it asks for the best course of remediation.

Does that mean that we have to examine a soil sample ourselves and determine the best course of remediation for that type of soil?
To me this is the point of this event, to be given information about some place with a problem and have to come up with a way to fix the problem and find what the problem was. It is not important to understand exactly how each test is done as long as you know how to interpret the results. This is a hard event to practice for because there are so many ways to test the soil each place may have its own way of how they want competitors to do the event. It says in the beginning of the event that judges must supply information on how they want the test conducted.
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