Joe Brown’s research is largely focused on water contamination and its impact on public health. He travels to communities around the world measuring microbes in each environment to gather exposure data and determines what it means for the health and safety of residents. In a recent trip to India, Brown found aerosolized Giardia and Salmonella, pathogens not normally known to be transmitted via air. This discovery creates a new challenge in environmental engineering, one where microbes associated with water and sanitation are transmitted via the air (aerosols), potentially leading to new pathways of disease transmission.
Researchers from the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering have found burning trash around the Taj Mahal is not only a major factor in the monument’s discoloration, it’s contributing to hundreds of premature deaths each year. The new study, published Oct. 7 in the journal Environmental Research Letters, builds on previous work that led local communities to ban burning of cow dung cakes, a common cooking fuel.
What’s that old saying about being in the right place at the right time? For Ph.D. student Aaron Bivins, news last week that he has won a Fulbright Scholarship means he’ll get to experience the reality of that maxim.
Last year, School of Civil and Environmental Engineers pinned the yellowing and browning of the Taj Mahal on air pollution — specifically airborne carbon particles and dust. Now they’ve found one of the primary sources of those pollutants: large-scale open burning of garbage.
"As I sat down to reflect on my experience this summer, I came to the realization that it is incredibly difficult to put something so life changing into words." Read more from Shannon Evanchec about her research trip to India last summer, which was funded by the Joe S. Mundy Global Learning Endowment.
The Taj Mahal’s iconic marble dome and soaring minarets require regular cleaning to maintain their dazzling appearance, and scientists now know why. Researchers from the United States and India are pointing the finger at airborne carbon particles and dust for giving the gleaming white landmark a brownish cast.
A paper outlining a new approach to teaching about sustainability and infrastructure co-authored by Armistead Russell appears in the just-published fall issue of The Bridge, the signature publication of the National Academy of Engineering. The paper covers the development, implementation and assessment of a new summer course they have delivered over the last two years.