Date Thesis Awarded


Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Science (BS)




Robert Pike

Committee Members

Deborah Bebout

Mark Greer


Pyridine (py) is a toxic and volatile organic compound that presents a serious, and deadly threat when ingested. As its use as a reagent, and commonness as an industrial byproduct, increase it becomes more important to develop faster, more accurate ways to detect pyridine so the proper filtration methods can be utilized on contaminated water sources. Copper(I) iodide (CuI) has shown remarkable luminescence when reacted with volatile organics like pyridine and was chosen as the substrate for the detection of aqueous pyridine in contaminated water samples. Four main analytical methods were tested, each measuring the fluorescence intensity of the product between CuI and py: analysis of the product in suspension using aqueous potassium iodide (KI) or acetonitrile (MeCN) as a solvent, analysis in toluene solution, analysis of solid films, and analysis using a ligand transfer reaction from 3-nitropyridine to py. Analysis in suspension, analysis in solution, and analysis of solid films all showed the ability to detect potentially toxic levels of py. Of these methods, though, the only one to show a linear relationship between fluorescence and py concentration was the analysis performed in solutions of toluene, therefore it is the proposed method for the detection of py in contaminated water samples.

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