Garrett Struckhoff of Augusta, Mo., a 2003 graduate of the University of Missouri-Rolla, recently received the "Best Student Paper Award" from the Battelle Memorial Institute for his research into the effects of PCE soil contamination on plants. PCE, also known as tetrachloroethene, is a toxic pollutant commonly used as a metal degreaser and in dry cleaning operations.
Struckhoff will present his research during the awards session of the Fourth International Conference on Remediation of Chlorinated and Recalcitrant Compounds, sponsored by the Battelle Memorial Institute. The conference will be held May 23-28 in Monterey, Calif.
Struckhoff co-authored the paper that served as the basis for the award. Titled "Effect of Soil PCE on Uptake and Loss by Plants," the paper discusses how groundwater contamination in New Haven, Mo., was located using a method of testing tissue samples from trees growing above the contaminated site. He completed the research under the guidance of co-authors Dr. Joel Burken, associate professor of civil, architectural and environmental engineering at UMR, and John Schumacher, hydrologist the U.S. Geological Survey office in Rolla.
Struckhoff received his bachelor of science and master of science degrees in civil, architectural and environmental engineering from UMR in 2002 and 2003, respectively. He is currently working on his doctoral degree at the University of Iowa.