Chemistry and the Environment, Invited / Award Lecture

Environmental Photochemistry of Anilines

K. McNeill1
1Institute of Biogeochemistry and Pollutant Dynamics, ETH Zurich Universitaetstrasse 16, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland -

Anilines and aniline derivatives are important synthetic chemicals whose uses are widespread, appearing in almost every consumer sector, from antioxidants in tire rubber to pharmaceuticals. Accordingly, they are found as environmental contaminants. This presentation will focus on one aspect of their environmental fate, which is their photochemistry in natural waters.

Central to the photochemical fate of anilines in surface waters is their reaction with triplet excited states of natural organic matter.[1] This mixture of excited state oxidants has proven challenging to study, and insight into their behavior has so far only been possible using multiple approaches, including laser spectroscopy, the use of molecular probe compounds, and chemical kinetics. Examples of these various methods will be highlighted in the presentation.

[1] K. McNeill, S. Canonica, Environ. Sci. Processes Impacts, 2016, 16, 1381.