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Grantee Research Project Results

Sustainable Concrete Filtration System for Developing Communities

EPA Grant Number: SU833174
Title: Sustainable Concrete Filtration System for Developing Communities
Investigators: Durham, Stephan , Mays, David , Ramaswami, Anu
Current Investigators: Durham, Stephan , Ramaswami, Anu
Institution: University of Colorado Health Sciences Center
Current Institution: University of Colorado at Denver
EPA Project Officer: Nolt-Helms, Cynthia
Project Period: August 1, 2006 through July 31, 2007
Project Amount: $10,000
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2006)
Research Category: P3 Challenge Area - Water , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development


The project will demonstrate that a non-traditional yet omnipresent material such as concrete can serve as an effective medium to remove harmful single celled organisms from water. Further, concrete can be fabricated and maintained with minimal environmental impact.


To develop an effective water filtration system using an ancient man-made material, concrete. The constituent materials for concrete exist all over the world. This study will take advantage of the advances in pervious concrete technology and applications to develop a technique for providing a readily available material to produce potable water. The target populations are rural areas and suburban areas of cities without sufficient water treatment facilities. The project addresses four aspects of sustainability for these areas: (1) appropriate technology, (2) ecosystem sustainability, (3) environmental sustainability, and (4) socio-economic sustainability.

Expected Results:

Bacterial concentrations, as well as selected inorganic water pollutants, will be measured before and after the test water passes through the concrete filter. Life cycle energy use in building, operating and end-of-life recycling of the concrete filter will also be computed to determine the benefits and energy-material costs of the concrete water filter.

Supplemental Keywords:

water, drinking water treatment, bacterial contamination, disinfection, sustainable development, permeable concrete, pervious concrete, recycled concrete,, RFA, Scientific Discipline, Sustainable Industry/Business, Sustainable Environment, Technology for Sustainable Environment, Chemistry and Materials Science, Environmental Engineering, bacteria, sustainable development, drinking water, environmental sustainability, concrete , pollution prevention

Progress and Final Reports:
Final Report

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The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Conclusions drawn by the principal investigators have not been reviewed by the Agency.

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