Photo-chemically produced reactive oxygen species by motor oils

Petroleum products are introduced into the environment through a variety of mechanisms and are shown to produce highly reactive oxygen species though photochemical reactions.1 One example is motor oil contamination which can come from sources including cars, trucks, and recreational water vehicles. Motor oils both synthetic and non-synthetic can produce potentially toxic components through natural weathering processes. To help assess overall ecosystem impact, a key consideration in understanding the mechanism of toxicity is examination of components produced through photochemical processes. Water accommodated fractions (WAFs) are samples of water mixed with oil and are commonly used to mimic environmental conditions when an oil spill occurs. Over time, water soluble species form and partition into the water phase of the WAF. This study examined photochemical degradation and subsequent toxicity of various synthetic oils when exposed to artificial sunlight for 6 hours. Benzoic acid served as a radical trap for any hydroxyl radical (·OH) species produced. Using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), the resulting formation of para-hydroxybenzoic acid (p-HBA) was measured and total ·OH flux determined.
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Abstract/Description: Petroleum products are introduced into the environment through a variety of mechanisms and are shown to produce highly reactive oxygen species though photochemical reactions.1 One example is motor oil contamination which can come from sources including cars, trucks, and recreational water vehicles. Motor oils both synthetic and non-synthetic can produce potentially toxic components through natural weathering processes. To help assess overall ecosystem impact, a key consideration in understanding the mechanism of toxicity is examination of components produced through photochemical processes. Water accommodated fractions (WAFs) are samples of water mixed with oil and are commonly used to mimic environmental conditions when an oil spill occurs. Over time, water soluble species form and partition into the water phase of the WAF. This study examined photochemical degradation and subsequent toxicity of various synthetic oils when exposed to artificial sunlight for 6 hours. Benzoic acid served as a radical trap for any hydroxyl radical (·OH) species produced. Using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), the resulting formation of para-hydroxybenzoic acid (p-HBA) was measured and total ·OH flux determined.
Subject(s): Motor oils
Undergraduate Research
Photochemical degradation
Toxicity
Date Issued: 2021