Mortenson Center affiliated faculty conduct fundamental and applied research and design on appropriate technologies that are low cost, easy to use, and deliverable in most settings; on development projects; and on developing community issues.

NSF International Research Experience for Students (2010-2013)
Project Description: Identify key factors that lead to the creation of sustainable water and sanitation infrastructure in developing communities through a longitudinal study of water and sanitation systems in Iquitos and Arequipa Peru. Study will be conducted in partnership with students from two Peruvian Universities; the National University of the Peruvian Amazon (UNAP) and the San Pablo Catholic University (UCSP).

Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Local Partners: Water for PeopleCONPACSan Juan Bautista Municipality
Mortenson Center Faculty Engaged: Dr. Karl Linden
Students Engaged: Christie Chatterley, Josh Armstrong, Jami Nelson-Nunez, Cary Ellmers, Christopher Ringer, Lia Brune, Deena Garland, Ashlee Adams, Rebecca Rasch, and Eric Cowan (tentative)

Emissions and Burn Lab for Sustainable Fuel
Project Description: Establish facilities at CU Boulder for designing, building and testing fuel briquettes and develop curriculum/laboratory experiments for an undergraduate air quality class focused on measuring emissions and evaluating stove and fuel performance.

Sponsor: Engineering Excellence Fund (University of Colorado Boulder College of Engineering and Applied Science)
Local Partner: Burn Design Lab
Mortenson Center Faculty Engaged: Dr. Lupita Montoya

Compressed Earth Block (CEB)
Project Description:  Affordable housing is an ever-present need. Earthen construction techniques such as compressed earth block (CEB) technology are being used to mitigate affordable housing shortages.  Combined with the lack of attention given by current building codes, CEB technology is in dire need of a methodological testing procedure intended to attest for the quality and integrity of the loose soils and consequent manufactured CEBs.  The Mortenson Center student researchers tested soil combinations to determine optimal component mixtures for structural CEBs to be used in houses at the Crow Reservation in Montana.

Sponsor: US Department of the Interior, Division of Energy and Mineral Development
Local Partner: Aapsalooke (Crow) Tribe
Mortenson Center Faculty Engaged: Dr. Bernard Amadei

Theses/Reports of CEB Work Completed at CU-Boulder:

Engineering Education: Assessing Engineering Students’ Understanding of Social Responsibility from Undergraduate and Graduate Education into Professional Life
Project Description:  In this NSF-funded study, quantitative and qualitative methods are used to understand how engineering and social responsibility are connected and valued by students at various stages of their college career, employees in the engineering workforce, and employers at engineering firms.

Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Faculty Engaged: Professor Angela Bielefeldt
Students Engaged: Greg Rulifson

Engineering Education: Collaborative Research: Gender Diversity, Identity and EWB-USA
Project Description: Diversity in engineering is vital to the sustainability and advancement of the profession.  EWB-USA successfully attracts a roughly gender-balanced membership, despite the gender-unbalanced profession.  This research sought to understand why these trends exist by understanding and comparing EWB-USA members to engineers not involved in the organization, including the personality traits, motivations, gains, and expected career outcomes.

Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Mortenson Center Faculty Engaged: Dr. Amy Javernick-Will
Students Engaged: Kaitlin Litchfield
Outside Faculty Engaged: Cathy Leslie, PE