Faculty Advisor

Bergendahl, John A.

Faculty Advisor

DiBiasio, David


Ground and surface waters are increasingly being contaminated with methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) that originates from gasoline spills and releases. While the health effects of MTBE-contaminated water are still being elucidated, it is imperative to remove the MTBE from water before it is used as a drinking water source. Removal of MTBE by traditional methods, granular activated carbon absorption and air stripping, is marginally successful due to the properties of MTBE. And traditional methods only transfer the MTBE from the water to another phase, solid or air. A need exists to destroy the MTBE. Advanced oxidation using Fenton's reagent has been recently found to be effective at mineralizing MTBE. This project measured MTBE concentration with time, as it was undergoing oxidation with Fenton's reagent. Rate constants were found that would allow pilot-scale and full-scale Fenton's oxidation systems to be designed to remove MTBE from water.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

January 2002


Chemical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Advisor Department

Chemical Engineering