Center for Environmental Systems
Breakthroughs in environmental engineering have the potential to impact a broad range of industries, technologies and people. The Center for Environmental Systems is a leader in developing, evaluating and implementing innovative environmental technologies. We are dedicated to balancing humankind's needs with the natural world.
The Center for Environmental Systems is the epicenter of a research and educational partnership between faculty in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Ocean Engineering, the Department of Defense, and private enterprise. We strive to ensure broad and deep research that solves problems spanning engineering, scientific, social, and economic dimensions. Our joint programs focus on multiple issues such as developing environmentally-sound ammunitions, organic biodegradable solvents, and novel methods to eliminate metal pollutants. These and our many other projects reflect the wide-ranging interests of our professors and students ? while addressing pressing military and global concerns.
Students and faculty gain unparalleled research opportunities in nine state-of-the-art laboratories that are instrumental in spinning off leading-edge environmental companies such as HydroGlobe and PlasmaSol. The Center is renowned for engaging workshops and educational projects for the professional community.
There are nine principal research areas in the Center for Environmental Systems, each encompassing cutting-edge laboratories and academic programs that foster in-depth analysis and experimentation. We specialize in the following environmental technology areas:
- Drinking water technologies
- Wastewater treatment
- Groundwater treatment and remediation
- Air pollution control
- Hazardous and industrial waste treatment
- Environmental systems modeling and monitoring
- Pollution prevention and minimization
- Life cycle assessment
Our research focus areas include, among othersTungsten alloys in munitionsWe seek to understand environmental and health effects in the development of future weapons systems containing heavy metals.Nano aluminum pollutantsHeavy metal contamination is a critical environmental problem. We seek to reduce environmentally toxic nanoaluminum particles through partnership with the Department of Defense.Hazardous and toxic pollutantsThis area focuses on safety and environmental concerns of hazardous and toxic pollutants and their toxicological effects on people, plants and microorganisms. We investigate their interactions with soil, air, surface waters, and groundwater to develop sound environmental procedures.Environmentally sound munitions coatingsResearchers in this area develop low-temperature, environmentally sound, highly controllable methods of depositing coatings of particularly interest in Air Force applications.Organic biodegradable solventsResearch in the use of enzymes in non-aqueous systems reveals biodegradable reactions impossible to sustain in water. We are achieving new technological advances in a more thermostable organic media than water.Green ammunition life cycles
Our researchers assess environmental impacts from commercial products to the remediation of soil from firing ranges contaminated with heavy metals and residual explosives.