State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2011TX394B
Title: Effect of Treatment on Harvested Rainwater Quality
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2011
End Date: 2/28/2012
Congressional District: 21
Focus Categories: Conservation, Water Quality, Water Supply
Keywords: rainwater harvesting, roofing materials, treatment, water quality, drinking water
Principal Investigators: Keithley, Sarah; Kirisits, Mary Jo
Federal Funds: $ 5,000
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 10,000
Abstract: Rainwater harvesting, which is the capture of rainwater from a roof catchment, has many environmental benefits. For instance, it is a local water resource, so electricity is not consumed to pump it across long distances; it also reduces stormwater run-off. While harvested rainwater is a valuable resource that can be treated for indoor domestic use (potable and non-potable), there is a surprising lack of data regarding the quality of harvested rainwater before and after treatment. The objective of the proposed project is to quantify the physical, chemical, and biological quality of rainwater harvested from pilot-scale roofs (asphalt fiberglass shingle, Galvalume®, concrete tile, cool, and green) and a full-scale roof (Galvalume®) before and after common treatment processes (i.e., cartridge filtration and ultraviolet [UV] light or chlorine disinfection). Thus, this research will allow us to determine if the common processes employed to treat rainwater will produce water that meets potable and non-potable standards. The proposed project also will include an outreach component in which middle-school students will participate in hands-on exercises to examine the quality of harvested rainwater before and after treatment.

Progress/Completion Report, 2011, PDF

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