Susan Barta

Analytical ChemistSusan Barta posing in the photo

One East Hazelwood Dr.
Champaign, Illinois 61820
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Ms. Susan Barta joined the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) in July 2012 as an Analytical Chemist in the Applied Research on Industrial and Environmental Systems (ARIES) group. She provides laboratory support for the ARIES group on numerous projects. Ms. Barta maintains analytical instrumentation, provides training to hourly workers, and generates technical reports.


  • M.S. in Water Resources Management University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI
  • B.S. in Oceanography University of Washington, Seattle, WA

Prior Professional Experience

  • 1989-1990 Hydrologist at U.S. Dept. of Agriculture NE Watershed Research Center, State College, PA
  • 1988-1989 Laboratory Manager and Analyst Todd Giddings and Associates, Inc., State College, PA
  • 1987-1988 Laboratory Analyst at Penn State University Mineral Constitution Laboratory, State College, PA
  • 1979-1985 Chemist 1 and 2 at Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene, Madison, WI
  • 1976-1978 Water Chemistry Specialist at University of Wisconsin-Madison, WI

Research Interests

  • Water Quality and Management
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Sustainable Practices

Current Projects

  • Compositional Analysis of Biomass for IDOT project
  • Compositional Analysis and emerging contaminant measurements for Biochar
  • Anion measurements for Illinois Clean Coal Project
  • Characterization and toxicity testing of fracking waters
  • Polyaromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) determinations in soils form a Naval Base shooting range

Analytical Skills

  • Sample processing and preparations in a diverse range of matrices
  • Sample clean-up, isolation/purification, and concentration of target compounds
  • Hydrolysis of biomass for sugar characterization
  • Liquid chromatography with Refractive Index Detection
  • Ion Chromatography
  • Total Carbon, nitrogen, and hydrogen analysis
  • Ultraviolet-Visible Spectroscopy
  • Wet chemical techniques

Recent Publications and Presentations

  • John W Scott, Kishore Rajagopalan, Susan Barta and Gerald Bargren (2013). “Compositional Analysis of Biomass to Aid Agricultural, Bio-processing, and End Use Decisions” International Starch Technology Conference. June 4, 2013


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