University of Colorado at Boulder
 
Projects : Environmental Engineering Design 
CVEN4/5434

Teams of 4 to 6 students will indicate project preferences and be grouped into teams based on preferences, team work-style preferences (using CATME), and cognitive style (per Wilde).

The following projects are available for Spring 2012:

Broadmoor Park, CO, Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade

Spring 2012; Sponsored by the Rocky Mountain WEF/AWWA Young Professionals Group
Regional Design Competition; RM WEF/AWWA Website

The Broadmoor Park Wastewater Treatment Plant is designed to treat ~0.06 MGD and includes bar screens, activated sludge with a clarifier, a polishing pond, and tablet chlorination/dechlorination. Due to seasonal difficulties meeting the permitted limit for effluent solids and the deteriorating structure, upgrades to the plant are needed. The team explored an immediate short-term solution that could be implemented in summer 2012 and a long-term upgrade to the facility.


AECOM Student Design Competition

Spring 2012; Sponsored by AECOM; competition website

Teams select either a (1) drinking water treatment or (2) wastewater treatment project. In the drinking water project, a community had to deepen its source water wells due to declining aquifer levels. The water in the deeper aquifer contained naturally occurring radionuclides, and treatment is needed to bring the radium and gross alpha into compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Act MCLs. For the wastewater project, upgrades to a wastewater treatment plant are desired to increase the energy efficiency and decrase greenhouse gas emissions associated with the facility.

One CU team worked on each of these projects, and both teams advanced to the semi-finals for a teleconference interview with AECOM's New York office.


FAA University Design Competition

Spring 2012; competition website

Teams select a project related to environmental interactions associated with U.S. airports. CU partnered with Denver International Airport (DIA) to explore energy, de-icing, and stormwater issues.


iCAST Service Learning Project: Community Waste-To-Energy Facility

Spring 2012; facilitated by iCAST

Teams explored ways to generate energy from municipal solid waste and waste wood in San Miguel County, CO.


Littleton/Englewood, CO, Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade

Spring 2011; Sponsored by the Rocky Mountain WEF/AWWA Young Professionals Group
regional design competition; RM WEF/AWWA Website

The Littleton/Englewood Wastewater Treatment Plant is designed to treat 50 MGD and includes innovative tricking filters, nitrifying trickling filters, and methanol dosing to denite filters. The project team shall evaluate the integration of phosphorus removal into the current facility to reach a future effluent limit of 0.135 mg/L. The new process shall be compatible with the planned upgrade to UV disinfection.

The CU team placed second.


AECOM Student Design Competition

Spring 2011; Sponsored by AECOM

Teams will select either a (1) drinking water treatment or (2) wastewater treatment project. In the drinking water project, an existing 30 MGD surface water treatment facility requires a 10 MGD upgrade to the softening process; lime softening or membranes could be used. For the wastewater project, a design for a sewage authority’s wastewater treatment plants is needed to meet a new Total Maximum Discharge Limit (TMDL) requirement for nitrogen while accommodating increased influent loading due to a major proposed development.

The CU team won! Four senior EVEN students -- Eric Millinger, Bryan Bei, Daniela Castaneda, and Lauren Schmeisser -- competed on the drinking water treatment project. Fifteen teams from around the U.S. and Canada participated in the AECOM competition. AECOM flew the team and Prof. Bielefeldt to New York to compete in the finals. The CU team completed a thorough and professional alternatives evaluation and design, and won on the basis of their written report, poster, oral video conference presentation, and final presentation and answers to questions. Congratulations! link to press coverage



Service Learning Project: University of Colorado waste-to-energy evaluation

Spring 2011; Sponsored by CU
The University wants to determine if solid waste that is currently landfilled and/or food waste sent off-site for composting can be converted to energy by CU. The team will compare different design options such as anaerobic digesters, and determine the life cycle benefits of diverting different wastes to the system.


iCAST Service Learning Project: Micro Hydro Power

Spring 2011; Sponsored by iCAST
Evaluate the suitability of microhydropower generation at multiple potential sites in irrigation ditches in Colorado. A microhydropower system will be designed for the best site.


iCAST Service Learning Project: Biogas from Apple Pomace

Spring 2011; Sponsored by iCAST
iCAST is working with an organic apple cider producer in Colorado to determine the feasibility of biogas generation from their process waste (apple pomace) using an anaerobic digester. The biogas could be used to off-set the energy demands of their pasteurization unit and the waste solids from the digester used to supply nutrients to the apple orchard.


iCAST Service Learning Project: Mobile Torrefaction

Spring 2011; Sponsored by iCAST
iCAST is working with a sawmill in Colorado to determine the feasibility of diverting wood wastes into a mobile torrefaction unit to create biocoal that could be used in regional coal-fired powerplants.


Drinking Water Treatment Plant Upgrade for Denver Metro

Spring 2010; Sponsored by the Rocky Mountain WEF/AWWA Young Professionals Group
regional design competition; RM WEF/AWWA Website

The Moffat Treatment Plant was originally constructed in 1937 and has since been expanded with a current capacity of 210 MGD. The project team shall evaluate rebuilding / remodeling Denver Water’s Moffat Treatment Plant at its current site or building an entirely new plant at Ralston Reservoir.


AECOM Student Design Competition

Spring 2010; Sponsored by AECOM
The CU team chose to work on the drinking water treatment problem, and designed an upgrade to an existing 10 MGD surface water treatment facility to remove atrazine, carbofuran, and simazine to 50% of the SDWA MCLs.

The CU team reached the semi-finals and presented their design via video-conference to the New York office of AECOM.



EDC Service Learning Project: Peru Small Scale, Rural Drinking Water Treatment

Spring 2010
A drinking water treatment design for a rural Amazon community is required that is low cost, simple to maintain, and socially acceptable. A comparison of point-of-use and community-based treatment options should be made.


EDC Service Learning Project: Belen, Peru, Peri-Urban Sanitation

Spring 2010
Belen is a poor urban sector of Iquitos, Peru. It has approximately 25000 residents, most living on roughly $1.50/day, who do not have access to sanitation. The situation is complicated immensely by Belen's location: it is flooded roughly six months out of the year when the river rises (roughly January-July). Networked sewerage is prohibitively expensive. The flooding has made low-cost options difficult to identify. Therefore, affordable household sanitation options for flood-prone areas in Belen are needed.


LEED Platinum Certified CU Dormitory

Spring 2010
Plans to achieve the best environmentally responsible design of a CU dorm are needed, which also incorporates elements to allow the building to serve as an on-going learning environment by showing residents their energy, water, and pollution impacts.


Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade for Denver Metro

Spring 2009; Sponsored by the Rocky Mountain WEF/AWWA Young Professionals Group
regional design competition; RM WEF/AWWA Website

The CU team won the competition, beating teams from CSU, CSM, and U Wyoming. They also won the National competetion at WEFTEC in Orlando, FL, in October. Read More, and MORE!


Lifecycle Analysis of Parts Salvage from End-of-Life Vehicles

Spring 2009; Sponsored by United Recyclers Group (URG)
Press Release on URG website



Halliburton Environmental Footprint Challenge

Spring 2009; Sponsored by Haliburton
Goal: reduce environmental footprint of oil and gas operations in Colorado
Halliburton HS&Environment website

Class teams won first and honorable mention prizes -- read more


Wastewater Treatment Plan for Sonora, Mexico

Fall 2006

Determine a sustainable was to treat wastewater from a community in the county of San Miguel in the state of Sonora, Mexico. Reuse of the treated water to irrigate food crops including grapes is desired.

Main design needs:

  • Determine appropriate methods to treat the wastewater from the community
  • Design collection sewers, as needed
  • Determine if safe reuse of the effluent water for irrigation is possible
  • Determine necessary permitting and regulations
  • Determine capital and O&M costs

RFP  | 


Sustainable Operation of Goat Dairy

Fall 2006

A Colorado coop to produce products from their goat herds wants the facility to operate as efficiently as possible, minimize waste and use natural systems for waste management.

Main design needs:

  • Develop a plan that minimizes the use of water and other resources
  • Determine how to minimize waste from the dairy and cheese making operations
  • Design processes that emulate natural systems in managing and mitigating any wastes

RFP  | 


Beneficial Use of Waste Slurry from Biodiesel Production

Fall 2006

Investigate how to reuse and/or treat the glycerol slurry that is produced as a by-product from a community-scale biodiesel production facility, so that it can be sold as a useful commodity.

Main design needs:

  • Determine if the slurry can be burned and used as a fuel source
  • Determine if the slurry can be cost-effectively processed into methanol
  • Compare these two options with other potential avenues of product re-use and reprocessing

RFP


possible: Metcalf&Eddy Design Competition

Fall 2006

Students select one of 5 projects (wastewater or water treatment related), and enter in the nationwide competition

Main design needs:

  • vary based on project selected

RFP


Reuse of Power Plant Residuals

Fall 2004

Determine an environmentally sound way to extract energy from or reuse fly ash and coal dust waste from a power plant in Canon City, CO.

Main design needs:

  • Determine if fly ash, coal dust, and other locally available wood can be combined into briquettes
  • Determine the energy benefits and pollution impacts of burning the briquettes with coal
  • Determine if other ways to divert the wastes to reuse are possible
  • Determine necessary permitting and regulations
  • Determine capital and O&M costs

RFP  | Results


Treatment of Potato Wastewater

Fall 2004

Retrofit an existing wastewater treatment plant in Center, CO, to reliably meet discharge limits for BOD and TSS.

Main design needs:

  • Determine if the existing SBR system can operate efficiently as designed
  • Determine if the sludge processing system should be redesigned to achieve better dewatering

RFP  | Results


Site Remediation in Canada

Fall 2004

Investigate how to remediate a site contaminated with PCB-contaminated LNAPL and prevent the associated groundwater plume from reaching nearby municipal drinking water wells.

Main design needs:

  • Investigate the hydrology at the site to determine likelihood of impacting wells and when
  • Determine how to remediate the LNAPL
  • Determine how best to prevent the groundwater plume from reaching the wells

RFP


Alamosa, Colorado - later changed to Stockton, California

Fall 2004

Drinking Water Treatment

Main design needs:

  • determine a low cost method to reach the new arsenic level

RFP  | Results


Jemez Pueblo, NM

Fall 2003

Wastewater Management

Main design needs:

  • current evaporative ponds are overloaded
  • low-cost, sustainable treatment
  • potential reuse for agricultural irrigation

RFP  | Results  | Successful Implementation


University of Colorado Recycling

Fall 2003

Solid Waste Management

Main design needs:

  • identify an optimal new location for the Intermediate Processing Facility (IPF)
  • select equipment for recyclables separation, upgrading, and densification

RFP  | Results


University of Colorado Food Waste

Fall 2003

Food Waste Management

Main design needs:

  • conduct cost:benefit analyses of food waste management methods
  • evaluate various in vessel composting equipment
  • determine an optimal site at CU for the facility

RFP


Cameron-Cole for ABC Chemicals

Fall 2003

Environmental Remediation

Main design needs:

  • remediate chlorinated solvents (tetrachloroethene, etc) at the site
  • find a low cost solution
  • short term solutions are preferred

RFP


Gunbarrel, CO

Fall 2002

Site Remediation of Soil and Groundwater

Main design needs:

  • off-site chlorinated solvent plume
  • chromium treatment
  • low-cost, rapid clean-up

RFP


Conejos County, CO

Fall 2002

Wastewater Management

Main design needs:

  • replace cesspools
  • low-cost, natural treatment

RFP  | Results


Escuela Mercedes Rodriguez primary school in Jalapa, Nicaragua

Fall 2002

Gray water management

Main design needs:

  • water supply
  • redesign toilet system to prevent backup and leach field adequacy
  • prevent stormwater from flooding classrooms

RFP  | Results


Mayapan, Belize

Fall 2001

Pig waste treatment to useful products

Main design needs:

  • treat pig waste to reduce water pollution, odor
  • provide soil amendments to help local crops
  • incorporate other village organic wastes as possible

RFP  | Results


SanPablo, Belize

Fall 2001

Water Resources

Main design needs:

  • Provide adequate water quantity and quality for village consumption and crop irrigation
  • Treat wastes to prevent contamination of the water supply

RFP  | Results


Eldorado Springs, CO, USA

Fall 2001

Community Wastewater Treatment

General Needs for the Future:

  • Convert residents from individual septic systems to a community treatment plan to prevent contamination of South Boulder Creek
  • Investigate costs to transport wastewater to City of Boulder for treatment
  • Investigate building a wastewater treatment plant in the community

RFP  | Results


Pinery WWTP, Colorado

Fall 2000

Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade

Main design needs:

  • Provide increased municipal wastewater treatment capacity
  • Wastewater treatment complies with stringent nitrogen and phosphorus limits

RFP