Author

Shirley Xu

Date of Award

2019

First Advisor

Michael Bergman

Second Advisor

David Myers

Abstract

Metal waste, especially electronic waste due to the increased use of technology has been an issue. The military also uses a lot of metal for their ships and training which also has to be discarded after they reach the end of their use. A lot of metal waste does not get recycled and instead end up in landfills. Metal wastes contains a lot of contaminants that can affect the environment around. Some of these contaminants include lead, mercury, and lithium and when metal waste gets discarded to landfills, a lot of these contaminants gets leached into the soil.1 If these contaminants get into contact with groundwater storage systems they can introduce toxins to the water and make the water toxic for humans to use.1 Corrosion is the deterioration of a substance, usually a metal due to its reaction with the environment. Every year, roughly $280 billion is spent on controlling and preventing corrosion.2 However, studying corrosion can also have a positive effect. Corrosion and bioleaching can become alternative methods to help discard metal waste. Additionally, studying corrosion will also help to understand what causes corrosion and to prevent it from happening in the future.

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