Detlef Knappe

S. James Ellen Distinguished Professor

Detlef Knappe is the S. James Ellen Distinguished Professor of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at NC State University. He received his BS, MS, and PhD degrees from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and he joined the NC State faculty in 1996. He is the Deputy Director of NC State’s Superfund Center “Environmental and Health Effects of PFAS” and is a member of the Center for Human Health and the Environment.

Dr. Knappe is interested in drinking water quality and treatment, water reuse, organic micropollutants, development of water treatment processes for polar and persistent organic pollutants, and the fate of organic pollutants in solid waste landfills. He is a Trustee of the American Water Works Association’s (AWWA’s) Water Science and Research Division, and he is a member of the North Carolina Secretaries’ Science Advisory Board. He serves as Associate Editor for AWWA Water Science. He also serves on the AWWA’s Organic Contaminants Research Committee and the Standards Committee for Activated Carbon.

Detlef Knappe and his students have been the recipients of numerous best paper, best poster, and best thesis awards. He is a recipient of the NCSU Outstanding Teacher Award, the Bill Horn Kimley-Horn Faculty Award for excellence in graduate and undergraduate teaching and other accomplishments at NC State University, and the Young Civil Engineer Achievement Award from the University of Illinois.

Education

Ph.D. 1996

Environmental Engineering

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

M.S. 1991

Environmental Engineering

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

B.S. 1989

Civil Engineering, University of Illinois

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Research Description

Dr. Knappe has conducted research on water treatment processes for over 25 years. Current research efforts focus on (1) developing and evaluating physical-chemical treatment processes for the control of disinfection byproduct precursors and trace organic compounds (taste and odor causing substances, carcinogenic volatile organic contaminants, 1,4-dioxane, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, endocrine disrupting chemicals, antibiotics, and other pharmaceutically active compounds), and (2) overcoming gaps between the Clean Water Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act by developing information about the effects of reactive and unregulated wastewater contaminants on drinking water quality and treatment. Funding agencies that have supported or are currently supporting his research include the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the National Science Foundation, the Water Research Foundation, the North Carolina Water Resources Research Institute, and the North Carolina Urban Water Consortium.

Publications

Diffusion of benzene and tetrachloroethylene through saturated cement paste
Hosseini, P., McElroy, A., Knappe, D. R. U., Gabr, M., & Pour-Ghaz, M. (2022), CONSTRUCTION AND BUILDING MATERIALS. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2022.127196
Extraction and Matrix Cleanup Method for Analyzing Novel Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Ether Acids and Other Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Fruits and Vegetables
Meng, P., DeStefano, N. J., & Knappe, D. R. U. (2022), JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURAL AND FOOD CHEMISTRY. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.1c07665
Mechanisms of orthophosphate removal from water by lanthanum carbonate and other lanthanum-containing materials
Zhi, Y., Paterson, A. R., Call, D. F., Jones, J. L., Hesterberg, D., Duckworth, O. W., … Knappe, D. R. U. (2022), SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.153153
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in river discharge: Modeling loads upstream and downstream of a PFAS manufacturing plant in the Cape Fear watershed, North Carolina
Petre, M.-A., Salk, K. R., Stapleton, H. M., Ferguson, P. L., Tait, G., Obenour, D. R., … Genereux, D. P. (2022), SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.154763
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in the environment
Evich, M. G., Davis, M. J. B., McCord, J. P., Acrey, B., Awkerman, J. A., Knappe, D. R. U., … Washington, J. W. (2022). [Review of , ]. SCIENCE. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abg9065
Stability of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Solvents Relevant to Environmental and Toxicological Analysis br
Zhang, C., McElroy, A. C., Liberatore, H. K., Alexander, N. L. M., & Knappe, D. R. U. (2022), ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.1c03979
From Pesticides to Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances: An Evaluation of Recent Targeted and Untargeted Mass Spectrometry Methods for Xenobiotics
Dodds, J. N., Alexander, N. L. M., Kirkwood, K. I., Foster, M. K. R., Hopkins, Z. R., Knappe, D. R. U., & Baker, E. S. (2021). [Review of , ]. ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY, 93(1), 641–656. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.0c04359
Influence of natural organic matter and pH on phosphate removal by and filterable lanthanum release from lanthanum-modified bentonite
Zhi, Y., Call, D. F., Grieger, K. D., Duckworth, O. W., Jones, J. L., & Knappe, D. R. U. (2021), WATER RESEARCH. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2021.117399
Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substance (PFAS) Transport from Groundwater to Streams near a PFAS Manufacturing Facility in North Carolina, USA
Petre, M.-A., Genereux, D. P., Koropeckyj-Cox, L., Knappe, D. R. U., Duboscq, S., Gilmore, T. E., & Hopkins, Z. R. (2021), ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.0c07978
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS)-contaminants of emerging concern
Baker, E. S., & Knappe, D. R. U. (2021, December 2), ANALYTICAL AND BIOANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00216-021-03811-9

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Grants

Studying the Fate of PFAS through Sewage Sludge Incinerators
Hampton Roads Sanitation District (HRSD)(3/28/22 - 9/28/22)
TSA: Testing PFAS Removal in Pilot-Scale Granular Activated Carbon Columns and Bench-Scale Ion Exchange Columns
Hazen and Sawyer(8/01/21 - 7/31/22)
Development of a Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Systems Analysis Tool (SAT) to Assist in Prioritization of Destruction Research and Management Decisions
US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)(3/22/21 - 3/31/22)
Occurrence and Fate of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in North Carolina Agricultural Systems
NC Department of Justice (NCDOJ)(1/01/21 - 12/31/24)
Assessment of Pesticide Stability in Water and Analysis of Pesticide Degradates in Private Wells in North Carolina
NCSU Water Resources Research Institute(3/01/21 - 8/31/22)
Highly Fluorinated Compounds – Social and Scientific Discovery: 3rd Annual Meeting
National Institutes of Health (NIH)(9/02/21 - 8/31/22)
Development of a Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Systems Analysis Tool (SAT) to Assist in Prioritization of Destruction Research and Management Decisions
US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)(6/11/20 - 9/30/20)
Thermal Reactivation of Spent GAC from PFAS Remediation Sites
Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP)(12/16/20 - 12/16/22)
Occurrence of PFAS in US Wastewater Treatment Plants
Water Research Foundation(3/26/20 - 7/01/22)
Science and Technologies for Phosphorus Sustainability (STEPS) Center
National Science Foundation (NSF)(10/01/21 - 9/30/26)