Recent Contract Awards

Self-Healing Hydrogel-Composite Membranes: From Proof of Concept to Water Reuse Application (WRF-17-25)
The Water Research Foundation recently awarded a contract to Yale University to begin research on self-healing hydrogel-composite membranes. The main goal of the project is to evaluate the performance of first-generation composite membrane under a wide range of conditions to optimize self-healing for faster technology transfer to industry.

Evaluating Economic and Environmental Benefits of Water Reuse for Agriculture (Reuse-16-06)
WRF recently awarded a contract to the Pacific Institute to quantify the non-monetized costs and benefits of water reuse relative to alternative supplies for advancing beneficial reuse of municipal wastewater. The primary research objectives are to enumerate the direct and indirect economic, environmental, and social costs and benefits associated with municipal recycled water; develop a framework for categorizing and ranking the significance of the quantifiable and non-quantifiable benefits and costs of non-traditional water sources; and develop outreach tools with agricultural sector partners to communicate the value of utilizing non-traditional water sources.

FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule: Opportunities and Impacts on Potential Water Reuse for Agricultural Irrigation (Reuse-16-07)
WRF recently awarded a contract to Water Reuse Consulting to examine the nuances of FSMA coverage, application, variances, etc. that might involve uses of recycled water in agriculture. The research team of Bahman Sheikh Water Reuse Consulting will interview representatives of regulatory agencies in California, Florida, Oregon, Vermont, North Carolina, and other states where recycled water is used for agricultural irrigation. The team will use this information to identify trends, similarities, innovative approaches, as well as any gaps that will inform future research. The final product will guide recycled water producers and agricultural users of recycled water through the regulatory system.

Demonstrating Real-Time Collection System Monitoring as Part of Enhanced Source Control for Potable Reuse (WRF-17-30)
WRF awarded a contract to Carollo Engineers, Inc., to provide a novel proof of concept evaluation of real-time wastewater collection monitoring systems as a part of enhanced source control programs for potable reuse using a distributed sensor network. The full-scale demonstration will take place within partner utilities’ collection systems at Ventura Water and El Paso Water. The approach is to use real-time monitoring technology to develop baseline raw wastewater quality sensor data, track changes in raw wastewater quality, and respond with an alarm and triggered collection of an automated sample if a raw wastewater quality change is detected.

Next Generation Anaerobic Membrane Bioreactor Development Utilizing 3D-Printing (U2R15)

The Water Environment & Reuse Foundation (now known as The Water Research Foundation) recently awarded a contract to the University of Michigan to begin Next Generation Anaerobic Membrane Bioreactor Development Utilizing 3D-Printing (U2R15). Sustainable water management is important for utilities and is driving efforts to reduce energy consumption and residuals production in domestic wastewater treatment without compromising effluent quality (Daigger, 2009). The overall project goal is to develop a novel AnMBR to achieve low cost domestic wastewater treatment with net positive energy and net greenhouse gas emission reductions. The pilot will develop an AnMBR that relies on biofilm formation within the bioreactor, using 3D printing to develop biofilm units that can be manufactured quickly.

Crediting Water Quality Benefits from Stream Restoration: Implementation of Case Studies in the Mid-Atlantic Region (SIWM1717)
The Water Environment & Reuse Foundation (now known as The Water Research Foundation) recently awarded a contract to the Center for Watershed Protection (Ellicott City, Maryland) to begin “Crediting Water Quality Benefits from Stream Restoration: Implementation of Case Studies in the Mid-Atlantic Region." This research project will highlight experiences that utilities and municipalities have had with stream restoration protocols across the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and in the Mid-Atlantic Region. 

Contracts Under Review

Critical Evaluation and Assessment of Health and Environmental Risks from Antibiotic Resistance in Reuse and Wastewater Applications (4813)
The goal of this project is to examine approaches to quantify the public health and environmental risks related to antibiotic resistance in reuse and wastewater applications.

Sampling and Monitoring Strategies for Opportunistic Pathogens in Drinking Water Distribution Systems (RFP_4911)

The goal of this project is to establish an optimized sampling and monitoring protocol providing a practical guideline for drinking water utilities to manage the detection of opportunistic pathogens in distribution systems.

Characterization and Contamination Testing of Source Separated Organic Feedstocks and Slurries for Co-Digestion at Resource Recovery Facilities (RFP_4915)
The objectives of this project are to identify, evaluate, and develop techniques for characterizing source separated organic (SSO) feedstocks and slurries for co-digestion at resource recovery facilities and testing them for contamination; to link characteristics to product quality; and support development of minimum feedstock quality standards for various product goals and standardization of sampling protocols for rapid monitoring of feedstocks.

The Impact of Pre-Chlorination and GAC Treatment on DBP Formation and Overall Toxicity in Drinking Water (RFP_4916)
The objective of this project is to investigate the impact of pre-chlorination followed by GAC on the removal of cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of drinking water, using appropriate bioassays.

Utilizing Smart Water Networks to Manage Pressure and Flow for Reduction of Water Loss and Pipe Breaks (RFP_4917)
Develop an approach in water systems using intelligent water networks to manage pressures and flows to extend pipe life and reduce water loss.

Subscriber Priority Program 2018
The Water Research Foundation is reviewing pre-proposals for funding consideration under its 2018 Subscriber Priority (SP) Research Program, which is reserved for Subscribers. The SP Research Program is designed to encourage collaboration with Foundation Subscribers on research. Subscriber Priority projects typically address applied research topics that may be local or regional in nature. The research topic should be broadly applicable to wastewater, stormwater, drinking water and/or seawater. Proposals should complement the Foundation’s ongoing research and not duplicate any current or pending project. SP proposals are accepted once per year under a two-step process.

Unsolicited Research Program 2018
WRF is reviewing pre-proposals that will significantly advance knowledge and understanding and that could fundamentally transform how WRF subscribers perform their work. WRF will select pre-proposals that can take existing research to the next level of completion, resulting in practical solutions to water quality problems. Those with likelihood to advance knowledge and understanding, and provide relevant information for WRF Subscribers will be invited to submit full proposals.

Evaluating Key Factors that Affect the Accumulation and Release of Lead from Galvanized Pipes (RFP_4910)

The objective of this project is to better understand the scenarios where Galvanized Pipes can contribute to lead at the tap, the magnitude of lead release from Galvanized Pipes, and factors that can impact accumulation and lead release from Galvanized Pipes.

Developing Guidance for Assessment and Evaluation of Harmful Algal Blooms, and Implementation of Control Strategies in Source Water (RFP_4912)

The objectives of this project are to:
• Develop authoritative guidance for managers to evaluate and manage the occurrence and risk associated with harmful algal blooms (HABs) in source waters and select control techniques that are appropriate to their needs and capabilities.
• Implement a decision tree to support this evaluation as a web-based resource linked to critically reviewed and validated information, guidelines, and regulations.

Investigation of Treatment Alternatives for Short-Chain Poly and Perfluoroalkyl Substances (RFP_4913)
The objective of this project is to investigate treatment alternatives for short-chain PFAS in drinking water sources.

Utility Responses to Cyanobacterial/Cyanotoxin Events; Case Studies and Lessons Learned (RFP_4914)
The objective of this project is to gather and present case studies that illustrate drinking water utility experiences and associated responses to cyanobacterial and cyanotoxin events, in their source and/or finished waters. The project will develop guidelines that would help utilities develop and implement successful programs for managing cyanobacteria and cyanotoxins.

Decision Support Framework for Drinking Water Treatment Plants Experiencing Lake Recovery (RFP_4920)
The project will develop and test decision support framework (DSF) for a source-to-tap treatment strategy for drinking water treatment plants undergoing changes in source water quality. Components of the DSF will include 1) a robust source water monitoring program that can capture rapid and long-term water quality changes, 2) a strategic method for utilities to evaluate efficacy of existing treatment that identifies source water quality trigger points and thresholds for alternative treatment regimes in order to meet utility defined finished water quality treatment objectives, and 3) consideration of unintended consequences to distribution system water quality due to source water quality changes and/or changes to water treatment.

Golf Course Sustainability Program Effectiveness On Surface Water Quality (RFP_4746)
Golf courses use fertilizers, pesticides, and other landscape management techniques that can lead to impaired surface and groundwater quality. The objective of this project is to use data sets from the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ASCP) for Golf Courses as a case study for assessing the effectiveness of sustainability actions or practices on surface water quality and, as an end result, provide guidance to other programs on effectiveness assessments and data collection for water quality improvement. 

Development Of A Design, Operations, And Regulations Guidance Manual And Training Materials For Onsite Non-Potable Water Systems (RFP_4909)
The Water Research Foundation is currently reviewing proposals to identify the skills and knowledge required to create a guidance manual and companion training program for design engineers, operators, utilities, regulators, and technology providers of onsite non-potable water systems (ONWS) based on the National Blue Ribbon Commission’s Guidebook for Developing and Implementing Regulations for Onsite Non-potable Water Systems.
Evaluation of CEC Removal by Ozone/BAF Treatment in Potable Reuse Applications (Reuse-17-04)

The Water Research Foundation is currently reviewing pre-proposals to quantify the removal of compounds of emerging concern (CECs) through ozone/biologically active filtration (BAF) based treatment of wastewater effluent. The research team is expected to analyze data from past and existing sites to quantify CEC removal and correlated removal efficiency with treatment train design, operations, and water quality parameters.

Understanding Wastewater Treatment Performance on Advanced Water Treatment Processes and Finished Water Quality (Reuse-17-05)
The Water Research Foundation is currently reviewing pre-proposals to investigate the impact of primary, secondary, and tertiary wastewater treatment on advanced water treatment (AWT) process selection and performance for potable reuse.

Industrial Reuse and Produced Water Reuse Research
The Water Research Foundation is currently reviewing pre-proposals for industrial reuse and produced water reuse.

Mapping Climate Information to Utility Business Functions (RFP 4729)
This new WRF project will aim to identify how climate change could affect the full range of water utility business functions.