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Current Areas of Research Interest in Ohio

Smart Water Technologies

Our researchers work to solve pressing water issues. By developing technologies and processes to reduce phosphorus and nitrogen from wastewater and agricultural runoff, Ohio WRC researchers are creating solutions to mitigate the detrimental effects of harmful algal blooms. In addition, they are evaluating methods for early HABs detection in Ohio lakes. Thus, by designing and using sophisitcated tools, our researchers are striving to reduce the occurence and severity of blooms. The key to dealing with this complicated and persitent issues is the active pursuit of creative and innovative solutions.

 


 

HABs in Recreational Waters 

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) continue to be a major issue in Ohio. During blooms, Ohio lakes become virtually unusable resulting in economic impacts to recreational activies. Thus, HABs ahve great potential to damage tourism to major Ohio water attractions such as Lake Erie, and determining mechanisms for HABs formation is critical to finding solutions. By breaking down this large problem into distinct research questions, our researchers can better quantify contributing factorings and their link to bloom formation, which are necessary steps to create successful long-term solutions.

 


 

Sustainable Future Energy

Water is needed for energy production. Correspondingly, energy is crucial for the provision and supply of water. Our reseachers are exploring this interrelationship with an aim toward sustainable development of current and new energy sources as well as strategies for more efficient water use.

 Sample project, Elizabeth Herndon, KSU

Graduate students in the Department of Geology at Kent State University visit the Huff Run watershed near Mineral City, OH, where many streams are contaminated with acid and metals from mining operations. Here, orange precipitates made of iron oxides are a key indicator that stream water downstream of a beaver dam (left side in photo) is contaminated with AMD, whereas water upstream of the beaver dam (right side in photo) is not affected.