Applied Analytical Chemistry Research Group (AChem) - ULL

Scientific Area: Environmental and geological engineering, geotechnics-Environmental biotechnology

Name of the service:  Applied Analytical Chemistry Research Group (AChem) – ULL

Main responsible: Javier Hernández Borges, Full Professor of Departament of Chemistry

Category of the service: Research group

Target group: Public bodies responsible of envormental monitoring and analysis

Scientific refence:

208 publications and contributions to conferences by members of the research group.


Research projects led by members of the research group in recent years:

1. PID2021-125404OB-I00. Non-integrated membrane bioreactors with indigenous microalgae cultivation for regeneration and recovery of domestic wastewater resources (MEC 2022-2025)

2. AGRIPLAS. Reclaimed water as a potential source of microplastics and others

emerging contaminants in agricultural soils.

3. 2021ECO18. MARTEN. Microplastics in wastewater treatment plants

domestic wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) of Tenerife: Preliminary study of the retention/elimination capacity

at different stages of treatment. (Cajacanarias 2022-2025)

4. PID2020-112867GB-I00. Adsorption of contaminants by microplastics present in the

environment: improvement of analytical methodologies from the perspective of chemistry

green analytics (MEC 2021-2024)

5. PROID2021010111. Stimulus-responsive polymers as new smart extraction materials: synthesis and application to contaminant analysis (DGU 2021-2023)

Offer description:

Marine ecosystems pollution by microplastics (MPs) is a global problem of special concern.  The presence of different types of microplastics (MPs) in the Atlantic Ocean has been well-documented, with data collected from the Canary Islands indicating high concentrations of MPs at four different beaches (hot spots). However, critical gaps persist regarding the abundance of MPs in diverse open ocean regions, at varying depths, and their transport behavior and origin.  This comprehensive approach not only enhances our understanding of the complex dynamics influencing the distribution of MPs but also provides crucial insights to address the widespread problem of MP pollution in the Atlantic.

On the other side, plastic production continues to increase every year, yet it is widely acknowledged that a significant portion of this material ends up in ecosystems as microplastics (MPs). Among all the environmental compartments affected by MPs, the atmosphere remains the least well-known. Here, our group conducted a one-year simultaneous monitoring of atmospheric MPs deposition in ten urban areas, each with different population sizes, economic activities, and climates.

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