Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Jay C. Means

Second Advisor

Dr. Donald Schreiber

Third Advisor

Dr. Steven Bertman

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


PCBs are widely distributed in the environment and they are biologically refractory and toxic compounds. There is great interest in understanding their fate in the environment, and also for finding safe and effective degradation methods.

This study is concerned with the photodegradation of four PCB congeners: PCB 5, PCB 18, PCB 77, PCB 128 in natural waters. Natural waters contain humic substances which can greatly influence the environmental fate of the PCBs. The different degradation of the four congeners was studied in standardized systems and in humic acid or nitrate solutions, under environmental conditions. DMDE and Methoxyclor (whose environmental half-lifetimes were reported in the literature) were used to estimate the environmental half-lifetimes of the four PCB congeners.

Included in

Chemistry Commons