Unsolicited Research

The Unsolicited Research Program supports WE&RF in its mission by funding research projects that can be the catalyst for transforming our understanding of our water resources and our ability to protect and preserve them, minimizing our impact on our global environment. WE&RF seeks pioneering research that will significantly advance knowledge and understanding in protection and enhancement of water quality or the water environment and that could fundamentally transform how WE&RF subscribers perform their work. WE&RF also considers proposals that would take existing research to the next level of completion, resulting in practical solutions to water quality problems. Each Spring, WE&RF requests pre-proposals for research projects. Those with likelihood to advance knowledge and understanding, and provide relevant information for WE&RF Subscribers are invited to submit full proposals. WE&RF requests that all prime contractor/subcontractor decisions be made among proposing teams prior to submission of full proposals. For more information, please contact WE&RF Program Director Lola Olabode at lolabode@werf.org.

2016 Unsolicited Research Program

WE&RF has completed proposal evaluation of the 2016 Unsolicited Research Program. 

Please stay tuned for the 2017 Unsolicited Research Program announcement in the late Spring of 2017. WE&RF will be offering funding for pioneering research that significantly advances our understanding of today's most pressing water quality issues and provides practical solutions to the challenges facing wastewater and stormwater programs. 

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ will be updated continuously with your questions as they arise.
Last Update: 12-20-2016

The projects below were selected from recent proposals because of their likelihood to advance knowledge and understanding, and provide relevant information for WE&RF subscribers.

Chart of WERF Unsolicited Research Projects 2006-2015

2014 Proposals

Balancing Flocs and Granules for Activated Sludge Process Intensification in Plug Flow Configurations (U1R14)

Principal Investigator Belinda Sturm, Ph.D., University of Kansas

This study will provide strategies and design criteria to stimulate granulation in existing activated sludge processes to improve overall settleability and allow for simultaneous nutrient removal.

Carbon Capture and Management Strategies for Energy Harvest from Wastewater (U3R14)

Principal Investigator Diego Rosso, University of California, Irvine

The overall goal of this project is to develop the tools necessary to use carbon capture technologies, whether existing or retrofitted into existing infrastructure, to maximize energy recovery while still maintaining permit compliance.

Phase-3 Development of Wastewater Pipeline Deterioration Model (U4R14)

Principal Investigator Sunil Sinha, Ph.D., Virginia Tech

This project will explore mathematical modeling methodologies including advanced artificial intelligence techniques to provide utility managers with a practical and efficient technique for predicting wastewater pipeline performance and estimating end of remaining life using deterioration curves to assist in decision making.

Stream Restoration: A Crucial New BMP Database Module (U5R14)

Principal Investigator Jonathon Jones, P.E., D.WRE, Wright Water Engineers

The goal of this research is to develop an information clearinghouse to help guide watershed planners and designers with the most up-to-date design and performance information for this emerging technology.