Dripping Acid

Now that I have your attention, I’ll sum up the past couple weeks of research:

We’ve equilibrated resin with streamwater, and collected streamwater that still needs to be equilibrated. The next step is to knock off the ions that the cation exchange resin is holding, so that we can analyze them. To do this, we drip acid through the resin, and then analyze it. Sodium is the first ion to be removed from the resin, due to its relatively weak charge, so we only need to collect the first ~350mL of post-drip. Given, the peristaltic pump goes at 1mL/min, so it’s a lengthy process.

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First Update- Picking Watersheds, Collecting Data

A little over three weeks into my research, and I suppose I’ve embraced my first summer in Virginia. My research fluctuates between days spent in front of a computer and field days spent around James City County, collecting water and data from streams. We began the summer with 7 preliminary watersheds, ranging from forested (Matoaka Woods) to residential to highly impervious (Newtown). However, given that everyone has gated communities and Homeowners’ Associations around here, we had to give up 3 of our watersheds. This was thankfully not an insurmountable problem, as we needed to eliminate some anyways.

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Using 22Na to Measure Effects of Impervious Surfaces on the Age of Groundwater


My name is Kira Holmes, and as a junior Geology major I’ll be working with Greg Hancock and Jim Kaste over the summer on research for my senior thesis.

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