Explore the Nano World 

 Wen's Research Group​

Wen Zhang, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE

Principal Investigator

Phone: (973) 596-5520 
Fax: (973) 596-5790
Email: wen.zhang@njit.edu

Office Location: Colton Hall 211

Find us on the map: 

Dr. Zhang’s doctoral student, Yihan Zhang, delivered a poster at 2023 Gordon Research Conference on Environmental Nanotechnology.


1.     Zhang, Y.; Song, Z.; Sugita, K.; Xue, S.; Zhang, W., Impacts of Nanobubbles in Pore Water on Heavy Metal Pollutant Release from Contaminated Soil Columns. Nanomaterials 2023, 13, 1671.





DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/nano13101671


新泽西理工学院土木与环境工程系张文教授课题组近期于Nanomaterials发表研究论文。文章结合了实验和模型方法,提供了关于纳米气泡土壤修复的重要补充信息。该研究调查了在含有纳米气泡(NBs)的孔隙水流下受污染土壤中重金属的释放情况。我们在水中产生并表征了三种NB(CH4、H2和CO2),包括气泡大小、Zeta电位、液体密度和表面张力,并且优化了测试中使用的流速以实现适当的土壤流化和金属解吸收或释放。 我们监测了渗滤液的化学性质以评估NB对电导率、pH值、氧化还原电位(ORP)和溶解氧(DO)的影响。结果表明,与去离子水相比,孔隙水流中的NBs更有效地释放Pb,其中CO2 NBs水最有效,H2 NBs水效果最差。另外,CO2 NB 水还用于冲洗被四种不同金属(Pb、Cu、Zn和Cr)污染的土壤,这四种金属表现出不同的浸出动力学。此外,对流-分散-沉积方程 (CDDE) 模型准确地模拟了浸出动力学,并解释了NB对释放金属传输的解吸速率常数(Kd)等关键参数的影响。这些发现可以为使用NBs水洗进行土壤修复的土壤污染物释放提供新的见解。本研究得到了新泽西水资源研究所(NJWRRI)的资助 (项目编号:2020NJ027B)。

On June 4-9, 2023, the 4th GRC on Environmental Nanotechnology was held at Grand Summit Hotel at Sunday River in Newry, Maine. A community of scientists from around the globe, representing academia, industry, government, and NGOs assembled to present and discuss cutting edge, unpublished research with other experts in the field. In appreciation of the multi-disciplinary nature of this growing field, the program included a comprehensive vision of critical and emerging research areas. This conference encompassed nanotechnology research advances across the field of nanomaterial synthesis, nanoplastics prevention, nanoparticles detection, and addressed safe deployment of nanotechnology in these areas with a view to public perception and policy. Dr. Zhang’s Ph.D. student, Yihan Zhang, delivered a poster on the topic of removing heavy metals from contaminated soil using nanobubble water.

Impacts of Nanobubbles in Pore Water on Heavy Metal Pollutant Release from Contaminated Soil Columns

Dr. Wen Zhang’s group at New Jersey Institute of Technology reported the use of nanobubbles in soil remediation. The study investigated the release of heavy metals from polluted soil under the pore water flow containing nanobubbles (NBs) to simulate natural ebullition. Three types of NBs (CH4, H2, and CO2) were generated in water and characterized, including bubble size, zeta potential, liquid density, and surface tension. The flow rate used in column tests was optimized to achieve proper soil fluidization and metal desorption or release. The leachate chemistries were monitored to assess the effect of NBs on conductivity, pH, oxidation-reduction potential (ORP), and dissolved oxygen (DO). The results showed that NBs in pore water flow was significantly more effective in releasing Pb compared to DI water, with CO2 NBs water being the most effective and H2 NBs water being the least. CO2 NB water was also used to rinse column soil contaminated with four different metals (Pb, Cu, Zn, and Cr), which exhibited different leaching kinetics. Moreover, a convective-dispersion-deposition equation (CDDE) model accurately simulated the leaching kinetics and explained the effects of NBs on the key parameters such as the desorption rate constant (Kd) that affect the released metal transport. The findings could provide new insights into soil pollutant release under ebullition and soil remediation using water wash containing NBs. This study is supported by the New Jersey Water Resources Research Institute (NJWRRI) Grant (Project Number: 2020NJ027B).


Yihan Zhang is a Ph.D. student in Environmental Engineering at NJIT. He received his B.S. in 2019 from Tongji University and M.S. in 2020 from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Mr. Zhang’s research focuses on the environmental applications of nanobubbles (NBs), including soil remediation with heavy metal and PFAS, foam fractionation, biofilm prevention using ozone NBs.

Engaging discussions were held with S. Garcia-Segura (Arizona State University) about the potential Pb forms in soil and potential improvements, such as considering how to apply this technology in real work. Yihan also benefitted from other posters, exploring portable probe for Pb concentration detection. These connections extend beyond the conference, offering prospects for future collaborations.

During five days of conference, every afternoon was scheduled with a lot of payable fascinating outdoor activities including kayaking, axe throwing, and hiking. Yihan Zhang chose to explore the resort by himself and ran into a beautiful trail and waterfall. He also used the outdoor pool, hot tub and sauna room within the hotel since it has been raining non-stop during the whole week. At the last day of conference, fresh boiled lobsters were provided which was truly amazing.