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Steven M. Pyle, M.S.
Research Chemist

Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Sciences, NERL/ORD

EXPERTISE: Analytical chemistry research directed toward instrumentation including GC/MS, GC/FTIR, HPLC, SFE, and SFC. Main emphasis on ion trap mass spectrometry including MS/MS and negative (NCI) and positive (CI) chemical ionization. Develop analytical methods to utilize improved sensitivity and capabilities (forgo sample clean-up/preconcentration) of ion trap mass spectrometry.

INDIVIDUAL RESEARCH MISSION: Immediate research objectives: (1) Complete data collection on direct aqueous injection GC/MS method development project. (2) Draft manuscript on comparison of CLP dual-column-ECD-pesticide-method data with ion-trap GC/MS data. Long-term research objectives: Initiate research effort on macromolecules/biochemicals for investigation into endocrine disruptors and other health-related issues.

SIGNIFICANCE/RELEVANCE OF RESEARCH IN RISK ASSESSMENT PARADIGM: Analytical chemistry is the most essential component to assessing the risk to chemicals in the environment. The risk is directly proportional to the concentration, identity, and location of the chemicals and these are all the end result of chemical analysis.

SIGNIFICANT PIONEERING CONTRIBUTIONS: First to apply ion trap tandem mass spectrometry to direct analysis of PNAs in used motor oil as manufacturer beta-test-site of this new technique. First to publish tandem ion trap ability to distinguish PNA isomers. Initiated method development by direct analysis of aqueous samples using sensitive ion trap GC/MS.


All research is published in peer-reviewed scientific journals. Data collected on tandem mass spectrometry of PNAs added to database maintained by instrument manufacturer. Analytical results supplied to EPA regions for regulatory efforts.

EXTERNAL COLLABORATIONS: Bob Brittain, Varian Corp. (beta-test site for ion trap GC/MS/MS). Jim Whittaker, EPA-Region 9. Contact point for analysis of pesticide/environmental samples. Barry Lesnik, Bill Telliard, and Dave Friedman, Office of Water and Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, EPA. Ken Brown, Tech Support Center, EPA-LV. Point of contact for Regional support and method development.

EDUCATION: Masters of Science 1978, Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH. Major: organic chemistry. Bachelor of Science 1972, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH. Major: chemistry. Numerous college-credit courses on advanced topics in chemistry.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: Experience 1985-Present--Research chemist for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Exposure Research Laboratory, Las Vegas, NV: Research and method development for organic compounds using GC/MS, HPLC, FTIR, and SFE/SFC. Specialize in application of ion trap mass spectrometry to environmental analysis. GS-13. Experience 1982-1985--Analytical chemist in U.S. EPA, EMSL, Cincinnati, OH: Mass spectral analysis of performance evaluation and quality assurance standards in Quality Assurance Division. GS-11. Experience 1979-1982--Research chemist for U.S. EPA in Health Effects Research Laboratory, Cincinnati, OH: Research on assessment of DNA-damage caused by chemical carcinogens. GS-9. Experience 1976-1979--Student chemical technician in U.S. EPA, Health Effects Research Laboratory, Cincinnati, OH: Analytical chemistry of metabolites of environmental chemicals in laboratory animals. GS-7.



SIGNIFICANT AWARDS: Two STAA awards for journal publications.

PUBLICATIONS: 15 peer-reviewed journal articles, numerous government reports and papers at scientific meetings. Most recent publications as primary author:

S. M. Pyle, L. D. Betowski, A. B. Marcus, W. Winnik, and R. D. Brittain, "Analysis of Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons by Ion Trap Tandem Mass Spectrometry." J. Am. Soc. Mass Spectrom., 8 (1997) 183.

S. M. Pyle and D. F. Gurka, "Volatile Organic Analysis by Direct Aqueous Injection," Talanta, 41 (1994) 1845.

S. M. Pyle, J. M. Nocerino et al., "Comparison of AAS, ICP-AES, PSA, and XRF in Determining Lead and Cadmium in Soil," Environ. Sci. Technol., 30 (1996) 204.

S. M. Pyle and A. B. Marcus, "Rapid and Sensitive Analysis of Pesticides in Environmental Samples by Accelerated Solvent Extraction and Tandem Mass Spectrometry," J. Mass Spectrom., In Press (August, 1997).

Poster Presentation:

Analysis of MTBE and BTEX by Direct Aqueous Injection GC/MS [PDF, 1 pp., 758 KB]

Environmental Sciences | Research & Development
National Exposure Research Laboratory
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