Navigation Links
'Super socks' help stem pollution runoff

This release is available in Spanish.

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists and their collaborators have improved on an existing method for removing contaminants from storm water runoff. These findings could provide surface waters additional protection against runoff containing pollutants from point sources such as construction sites, storm waters and other urban landscapes.

"Filter socks" containing compost tucked into mesh tubes are used to capture some of the silt, heavy metals, fertilizers and petroleum products washed from compacted surface areas into nearby streams and rivers.

A group of scientists from the ARS Animal and Natural Resources Institute in Beltsville, Md., teamed with researchers from Filtrexx International, which manufactures the socks, to see if adding flocculation agents to the socks improved their performance. The ARS team included agronomist Eton Codling, microbiologist Dan Shelton and soil scientists Yakov Pachepsky and Ali Sadeghi. Their Filtrexx International partners were Britt Faucette and Fatima Cardoso-Gendreau.

Wastewater treatment plants use flocculation agents to help sediments and pollutants form clumps large enough to be filtered out of the water, even when the substances are in a dissolved state. The team added flocculation agents to compost socks and then ran laboratory tests to see how well the socks trapped sediment, coliforms, nitrates, E. coli bacteria, heavy metals and petroleum products in runoff after simulated "rain events."

The scientists found that compost socks alone removed the majority of clay and silt particles that contribute to suspended solids in surface waters. The socks also removed 17 percent of ammonium nitrogen, 75 percent of E. coli bacteria, and from 37 percent to 72 percent of the heavy metals. In addition, runoff levels of diesel fuel dropped 99 percent, levels of motor oil dropped 84 percent, and gasoline levels dropped 43 percent.

However, socks with flocculation agents removed even more of the pollutants from runoff, including 27 percent of the ammonium nitrogen, 99 percent of E. coli bacteria, 99 percent of the motor oil, 54 percent of the gasoline and from 47 percent to 74 percent of the heavy metals.


Contact: Ann Perry
United States Department of Agriculture-Research, Education, and Economics

Related biology news :

1. Toward a new generation of superplastics
2. Supercharged proteins enter biologys forbidden zone
3. WSU researchers use super-high pressures to create super battery
4. Defense-scale supercomputing comes to alternative energy research
5. SuperPower and UH sign high temperature superconducting wire license agreements
6. Common house ants form supercolonies, prosper in urban settings
7. Light activated warhead turns modest molecules into super protein killers
8. Supermarket lighting enhances nutrient level of fresh spinach
9. Low levels of antibiotics cause multidrug resistance in superbugs
10. Zymes LLCs Omega-3 Enhanced Water OmegaChill to be Distributed at NFL Alumni Super Bowl XLIV Weekend Events on February 5-7th, 2010
11. Secrets to superb malting barleys explored by ARS researchers
Post Your Comments:
(Date:5/9/2016)... 9, 2016 Elevay is currently ... expanding freedom for high net worth professionals seeking travel ... globally connected world, there is still no substitute for ... duplicate sealing your deal with a firm handshake. This ... taking advantage of citizenship via investment programs like those ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... 27, 2016 Research and ... Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ... The analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics ... during the period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics ... such as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and ...
(Date:4/13/2016)... physicians supporting Medicaid patients in Central Florida ... telehealth thanks to a new partnership with higi.   ... can routinely track key health measurements, such as blood ... they opt in, share them with IMPOWER clinicians through ... location at no cost. By leveraging this data, IMPOWER ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ON (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS ... DNA Technical Leader at the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as ... the STACS DNA team,” said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ... clinical trials of its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. ... multiple ascending dose studies designed to assess the ... subcutaneous injection in healthy adult volunteers. ... as a single dose (ranging from 45 to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Andrew ... Published recently in ... journal from touchONCOLOGY, Andrew D Zelenetz , ... cancer care is placing an increasing burden on ... biologic therapies. With the patents on many biologics ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will showcase its product’s latest features from ... also be presenting a scientific poster on Disrupting Clinical Trials in The Cloud ...
Breaking Biology Technology: