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Water Research Advisory Board Meeting August 2022

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

On August 12, 2022, the Water Research Advisory Board (WRAB) of the Oklahoma Water Resources Center (OWRC) met to discuss research priorities for the upcoming year and hear faculty and student presentations on research findings from projects which the board awarded funding last year. 


The WRAB meets twice a year to discuss research priorities for the OWRC and review and select proposals for funding by the Water Center utilizing the United States Geological Survey 104b funds allotted to the center by Congress. The board consists of 24 members of Oklahoma water professionals representing local, state, and federal organizations with an interest in improving water resources and supporting continued research interests.


Dr. Kevin Wagner, Director of the OWRC, opened the meeting with introductions of each member and the organization they represent. The board received an update on current OWRC research and outreach programs. Then a roundtable discussion among the WRAB members identified current research priorities in Oklahoma. These included PFAS, drought related issues, water security and aging water infrastructure, climate change impacts, and reliance and much more. The Water Center will incorporate these research priorities into their upcoming call for pre-proposals for funding by the USGS 104b program.


Research findings were presented by prior USGS 104b grant awardees. Jason Vogel, director of the Oklahoma Water Survey and professor in the OU School of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science, and Grant Graves, assistant director of the Oklahoma Water Survey and Research and Monitoring Coordinator at the University of Oklahoma, presented their research on the “Investigation of Indicator Bacteria in Oklahoma Streams.” Javier Vilcaez, Associate Professor in the OSU Boone Pickens School of Geology, presented his research on “A New Dolomite Filtration Technology to Remove Heavy Metals and NORM from Produced Water.”


Fahim Ferdous Hossain, PhD student and Sabit Ekin, OSU Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, presented on “Soil Monitoring through UAV-Assisted Internet of Things Wireless Underground Sensors.” David Lambert, previously Assistant Professor in the OSU Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, and his PhD student Hossain Atoufi presented on their research on “Passive Samplers for Monitoring Perfluoroalkyl Substances at Contaminated Sites.” The Water Center will continue to highlight these 104b funded projects in the future.


The next meeting of the WRAB will be late November or early-December to review pre-proposals submitted for consideration for funding by the Water Center. More information on the call for pre-proposals will be available soon.

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