Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship Program

"Reducing Runoff with Low Impact Development Practices"

About the Project

Project Time & Type:
Fall 2010 - DURI
Research area(s):
environment, water
Project Description:
The Greater Lafayette area experiences combined sewer overflows (CSO) in numerous locations during heavy rainfall events, which results in the release of untreated wastewater to the Wabash River. To help reduce these occurrences, low impact development best management practices (LID BMPs) can be implemented. One of such practices is rain barrels, which capture rainfall from the roofs of buildings, reducing the amount of stormwater runoff generated by the property and thereby reducing the volume of water in combined sewer systems. This research will focus on educating homeowners who live in CSO areas about LID BMPs. As part of the project, homeowners in these areas will be given the option of purchasing a rain barrel at a greatly discounted price ($5).
Expected Student Contributions:
The DURI student will: (i) assist in planning and presenting rain barrel and LID BMP workshops; (ii) design a website; (iii) collect data and make calculations regarding the amount of water kept out of the combined sewer system and the associated cost savings; and (iv) assist with the modeling component of the project using L-THIA (Long-Term Hydrologic Impact Assessment).
Related Website(s):
Desired Qualifications:
The student should have an interest in environmental sciences or engineering.
Estimated Weekly Hours:
Department awards independent research credits for this project?
Yes, 3 credit hours

Professor in Charge

Engel, Bernard
agricultural and biological engineering

Student Supervisor

Heather Gall
graduate research assistant

Cooperating Faculty

Chad Jafvert
Civil Engineering