Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2011RI97B

Increasing sources of water supply: advanced treatment of stormwater runoff

Institute: Rhode Island
Year Established: 2011 Start Date: 2011-03-01 End Date: 2012-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $16,804 Total Non-Federal Funds: $35,098

Principal Investigators: Vinka Oyanedel-Craver, Vinka Craver

Abstract: The project Increasing sources of water supply: advanced treatment of stormwater runoff is an effort toward decreasing Rhode Islands water demand deficiency through the recovery and treatment of stormwater effluent. Rhode Island attracts a great number of summer tourists and as a result the state has been unable to meet water demands during the hottest months. A concurrent, yet well researched, problem encountered by the state of Rhode Island is the environmental consequence of uncontrolled and untreated discharge of urban storm water runoff. The important implication of these recent research findings is that retention and loss of storm water is necessary to restore catchment hydrology toward predevelopment levels. This project proposes the responsible reuse of stormwater to both recharge the local groundwater table and for use in non-potable consumption after treatment. Due to the growing needs for storm water harvesting, some novel concepts are emerging that may enhance the potential for application of storm water harvesting systems across a greater range of situations. One such technology is based on the proven concept of porous pavement, which has been used for decades in storm water flow and pollution management. Traditional design of a porous pavement system consists of a porous surface overlaying a filter layer that is placed on top of a sub-base. The porous surface can be modular (unbound individual and nonporous blocks, laid down with gaps in between) or monolithic (asphalt or concrete without fine aggregate). The sub-base may contain a collection pipe for drainage. These systems are usually installed in car parks and sections of streets with low traffic volume. This research will study a series of advanced treatment technologies to enhance the removal of contaminants in pervious pavement facilities to reuse the effluent in residential settings. This proposal is to improve deactivation of pathogenic microorganisms and sorption/biodegradation of polyaromatic hydrocarbons using a two-stage approach: (1) amending the porous matrix of the pervious systems and (2) advanced post treatment.