WPI’s Environmental Engineering program encourages interdisciplinary research to fully explore research areas like issues of water quality, human health, contaminated site remediation, sustainability, or environmental preservation, and find effective solutions both locally and globally. Students work within a variety of WPI departments, from civil, chemical, and mechanical engineering to studies in the humanities, where socioeconomic, political, sustainability, and other humanistic issues are also addressed. The future is in our graduates’ hands, and here in WPI’s labs, watersheds, and communities, they learn ways to change the world for the better.

Faculty Research

Our faculty have diverse research interests, including:

  • novel physical and chemical treatment processes
  • sustainable engineering design
  • colloid-polymer interactions
  • computer modeling
  • risk analysis and characterization
  • 3D volume mesh generation
  • alternative energy technologies

Visit our faculty members’ bio pages to learn more about their individual current and ongoing research interests.

Research Facilities

With a number of departments exploring different aspects of ecosystems—their functions, their composition, and the actions and policies that influence them—WPI’s Environmental Engineering program offers multiple research facilities for varying approaches to investigation at locations on campus and around the globe.

Fuller Environmental Laboratory

Located in Kaven Hall, the Fuller Laboratory is designed for state-of- the-art environmental analyses, including water, wastewater and soil testing and treatability studies. State-of- the-art instrumentation (GC, ICP, etc.) are available for student projects.

Geo/Water Resources Laboratory

Also located in Kaven Hall, the Geo/Water Resources Laboratory provides space and equipment for soil and water quality analyses, as well as a secure place for field and laboratory equipment used in research and project work.

Chemical Engineering Laboratories

Cutting-edge laboratories in Goddard Hall are available for chemical engineering, chemistry, and biochemistry work. Students have access here to state-of- the-art analytic equipment such as gas chromatographs.

Life Sciences & Bioengineering Center

New facilities for research at the Life Sciences & Bioengineering Center (LSBC), Gateway Park, are dedicated to biomedical uses. The modern core equipment supports cellular, molecular, and tissue engineering research activities.

Project Centers Throughout the World

WPI students are able to conduct studies at one of the Interdisciplinary and Global Studies Division’s (IGSD) Project Centers around the world. This unique opportunity allows students with rigorous technical training to research environmental problems emerging in many cultures, as well as to learn differing viewpoints on how to find solutions.

Major Qualifying Projects

Our students produce some compelling research as part of their Major Qualifying Projects, completed during their senior year at WPI. Some recent examples:

  • Reducing Phosphorus Contamination in Stormwater Runoff
  • Reactivating Wastewater Treatment in Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Alternative Carbon Sources for Biological Denitrification