Brandi Klingerman | February 2, 2019
Researchers from the University of Notre Dame have received $1.46 million from the National Science Foundation to expand a previous study of private, self-supplied water systems in Granger, Ind. to communities in Kosciusko County. The study will focus on the identification of nitrate, a common groundwater contaminant that can cause low blood oxygen, which can lead to blue-baby syndrome and increase risk for certain cancers, birth defects, and thyroid issues.
“Since private water systems, which often pull from groundwater, are not federally regulated, owners of these water systems are responsible for testing and treating their own systems,” said Dong Wang, assistant professor of computer science and engineering and principal investigator. “For the previous phase of our research, the team utilized crowdsensing – a method of data collection that relies on people to gather information and report back – to analyze the nitrate contamination within private water systems and to develop a framework for reliable and timely detection of drinking water contamination in private water systems.”
With the new funding, Wang and his team will have the capability to expand their research into new areas and analyze private well contaminants in suburban, rural, lakefront, and farming communities. The researchers will use crowdsensing for obtaining credible information about water contamination in private wells via citizen science through effective outreach and implementation strategies within the designated areas.
Wang said each community’s participation is vital for the development, implementation, and success of the project.
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