Madison from the air

The Aquatic Chemistry group at UW-Madison focuses on processes that impact water quality. We study the fate of polar organic contaminants, such as pesticides and PFAS, in natural and engineered aquatic systems. We also study processes that transform organic chemicals, including the role of dissolved organic matter in those systems. By studying these fundamental reaction mechanisms, our group aims to develop models and real-world applications that can be used to improve water quality.

Group News

24 January 2024

Congrats to Jenna Swenson for her shiny new first-author paper in Environmental Science & Technology. She investigated the combined impacts of cations and dissolved organic matter on manganese oxide reactivity in collaboration with Matt Ginder-Vogel. We are super proud of her work on this incredibly complex system.

4 January 2024

Our latest study on aquatic herbicides is now out in Environmental Science: Processes and Impacts. This was a team effort, with work performed by two master’s students (Sydney Van Frost and Angela Magness), a PhD student (Amber White), and a UW-Madison undergraduate (Josie Jauquet). They showed that laboratory measurements underestimate the persistence of the herbicide fluridone in lakes.

22 October 2023

Christy was named the interim director of the Aquatic Sciences Center, which is home to the Wisconsin Sea Grant College Program and the University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute (WRI). Both programs support multidisciplinary research, education and outreach for the protection and sustainable use of Wisconsin’s water resources.

14 September 2023

Our latest paper on quantifying photochemically produced reactive intermediates is out in Environmental Science: Processes and Impacts. This study was a team effort between two UW-Madison PhD students (Reid & Steph) and an amazing group of undergraduate researchers in the lab of Kris Wammer at the University of St. Thomas.

8 August 2023

Our study on the fate of the aquatic herbicide florpyrauxifen-benzyl (FPB) is published in Environmental Science & Technology. This study combines laboratory and field studies to investigate the role of multiple simultaneous processes in FBP fate.

31 July 2023

Reid’s paper on dissolved organic matter photooxidation is now out in Environmental Science & Technology. He used high-resolution mass spectrometry to link dissolved organic matter composition with its photoreactivity.

1 June 2023

Hooray for Reid Milstead and his defense of his PhD in Environmental Chemistry and Technology! He studied the reactivity of dissolved organic matter during disinfection and photooxidation.

6 May 2023

Expanding Your Horizons is back! It was so much fun to participate in this outreach event for middle school girls, female-identifying, and non-binary youth for the first time since the pandemic. A huge thanks to all the WSEL students and postdocs who made this happen.

27 April 2023

Congrats to Sydney van Frost for her successful defense of her MS thesis on the fate of aquatic herbicides! Sydney was co-advised by Prof. Trina McMahon and in Civil & Environmental Engineering. We wish her the best as she starts her new job in Alaska.

14 April 2023

Sam Bieber finished his MS in Chemistry and studied PFAS fate in tributaries of Lake Superior. We are excited for him to start his job at USGS!

11 April 2023

Stephanie Berg’s massive study on dissolved organic matter photochemistry is out in Environmental Science & Technology. She studied the reactivity and composition of nearly 50 water samples from natural and engineered systems.

Group News Archive