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Wastewater Treatment with the Mass Water Resource Authority

MIT Sea Grant researchers and engineers partnered with the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority on a $4 billion dollar wastewater treatment facility; billions of dollars were spent subsequently on cleaning up combined sewer overflows and storm drains. MIT Sea Grant researchers contributed to the science that was the foundation of placing an outfall to disperse wastes, modeling circulation and effluent from combined sewer overflows and supporting two long-term research projects that addressed issues relating to the source, transport, fate and effect of contaminants in water and sediments.

In parallel, innovative technologies and tools that supported the clean-up, most notably, the development of autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs), were successful in providing a platform for sensors. MIT Sea Grant will continue this legacy with a focus on acidification of ocean and coastal waters, development of sensors for sampling, monitoring, and modeling physical, chemical, and biological variables, and sensor platforms and vehicles that can withstand high forces.