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Prof. Ilaria Degano, Prof. Francesca Modugno

Title of the PhD project:
Investigating the potential of analytical pyrolysis coupled to mass spectrometry in the study of particles derived from textile fibers and tire wear in the environment.

Abstract of the PhD project:
The intensive everyday usage of plastic materials causes the release of a large amount of microplastics (MPs) in the different environmental compartments. In particular, textile fibers and tire wear are considered major sources of MPs in water basins and sediments. The project will focus on the development and optimization of analytical protocols for the quali-quantitative characterization of textile fibers and tire-wear particles, related additives, and for the study of their physical-chemical behavior during degradation processes. Pyrolysis coupled with gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (Py-GC/MS), and Evolved Gas Analysis coupled with mass spectrometry (EGA-MS) will be the main employed analytical techniques, complemented by spectroscopic approaches and other chromatographic and mass spectrometric techniques.
The research project will provide advanced analytical tools and knowledge for a better evaluation of the impact of pollution related to textile micro-fibers and tire-wearing phenomena, in view of supporting monitoring and remediation strategies.
The results and knowledge obtained on the degradation processes of the investigated polymeric materials will be highly transferable to the fields of material science, textile research and heritage conservation.

• F. Sabatini, T. Nacci, I. Degano, M.P. Colombini, “Investigating the composition and degradation of wool through EGA/MS and Py-GC/MS”, Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis, vol. 135, pp.111-121, 2018.
• K. Chouchene, T. Nacci, F. Modugno, V. Castelvetro, M. Ksibi, “Soil contamination by microplastics in relation to local agricultural development as revealed by FTIR, ICP-MS and pyrolysis-GC/MS”, Environmental Pollution, vol. 303, 119016, 2022.
• M. Mattonai, T. Nacci, F. Modugno, “Analytical strategies for the quali-quantitation of tire and road wear particles - A critical review”, Trends in Analytical Chemistry, vol. 154, 116650, 2022.
• T. Nacci, F. Sabatini, C. Cirrincione, I. Degano, M.P. Colombini, “Characterization of textile fibers by means of EGA-MS and Py-GC/MS”, Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis, vol. 165, 105570, 2022.

Oral communications at conferences:

Poster communications at conferences:
T. Nacci, F. Sabatini, I. Degano, F. Modugno, Integrated pyrolysis based approaches for synthetic fibers identification, #RSCPoster Twitter Conference, online conference, 2 - 3 March 2021.
T. Nacci, F. Sabatini, I. Degano, F. Modugno, Validation of Py-GC/MS to investigate synthetic fibers, Chemistry for the Future 2021, University of Pisa, online conference, 30 June - 2 July 2021.
T. Nacci, D. Roversi, F. Sabatini, I. Degano, F. Modugno, Characterization of textile fibers by means of analytical pyrolysis coupled to mass spectrometry, XXVII Congresso Nazionale della Società Chimica Italiana, online conference, 14 - 23 September 2021.
• T. Nacci, D. Roversi, F. Sabatini, I. Degano, B. Ferriani, N. Strada, F. Modugno, Multianalytical approach to characterize composition and degradation processes of synthetic high-fashion textiles from the Nanni Strada Design Studio archives, MetroArchaeo 2021, Milan, 20 - 22 October 2021.
T. Nacci, F. De Falco, F. Vitale, I. Degano, F. Modugno, Investigating the composition and photodegradation of commercial wet wipes by Py-GC-MS and EGA-MS, Chemistry for the Future 2022, University of Pisa, 29 June – 1 July 2022.

Other achievements:


Dipartimento di Chimica e Chimica Industriale
Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry
Via G. Moruzzi, 13 - Pisa, Italy
Corso di Dottorato in Scienze Chimiche e dei Materiali
Doctoral School in Chemistry and Material Science
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