You and the other members of your research team have been hired to investigate a real world environmental problem. You will be presented with a scenario concerning a particular air or water pollutant and it will be your task to identify the offending agent, track down the source of contamination, and find a solution to the contamination. Each groups problem will be different, but you must perform the following:
Based on the clues given in your scenario, you will conduct a search of recent literature in order to learn more about the problem you are investigating. Literature prior to 1980 may lead you in the wrong direction. You may use the internet, the library, or resource people (a list will be provided for you).
After reading the literature about your environmental problem you should be able to narrow down the number of tests you need to run on your sample in order to identify your contaminant. Any testing reagents and / or equipment that you will need will be readily available in the Chemistry Lab.
You will run the tests first to get a positive result for your contaminant (qualitative analysis). Once you are sure you have correctly identified the offending agent, you must determine its concentration (quantitative analysis) in the water sample provided and assess whether it is a health hazard at the level present.
Now that you know what your pollutant is, your task is to find out where it is coming from! You will need to investigate the history of the area, use maps of the surroundings and articles to help you solve your problem. These are provided for you in your groups notebook.
After you have finished testing and have successfully identified the source of contamination, your work as an environmental chemist is almost complete. Your client will expect you to recommend actions with regard to preventing further contamination at the site. These recommendations must be scientifically sound and economically feasible!!
Phase 5: Research Paper
You will organize all you have learned into a typed paper which will include the following:
1.) Description of the problem.
Share your findings with your classmates! Every member of the group should have some role in the presentation. This should be approximately 15 minutes long, any style or format you want. You will be graded according to the oral presentation grading rubrics. Grading will be done by a group of adults.