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Highlight Seminar: Bruce Rittman

Highlight Seminar: Bruce Rittman

Date: October 12, 2022

Time: 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Location: Maeder Hall Auditorium

“Wastewater and Beyond: From Treatment to Resource”

Bruce Rittmann

Arizona State University


2014 was the 100-year anniversary of the activate sludge process.  While activated sludge has many benefits that have kept it at the forefront of wastewater treatment for a century, it also is very costly in terms of money and energy. New developments in anaerobic technologies are making it realistic to replace activate sludge in ways that are energy positive and also that offer the option for making “wastewater treatment” economically profitable. This talks reviews and puts into perspective anaerobic membrane bioreactors (AnMBRs), microbial electrochemical cells, and selective recovery of P and N, all of which make it possible to turn wastewater from a “treatment problem” to a “resource benefit.”


Rittmann joined the faculty in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1980 as an assistant professor. He was promoted to associate and full professor in 1984 and 1988. In 1992, Rittmann moved to Northwestern University to become the John Evans Professor and Area Coordinator of Environmental Engineering. In 2005, he moved to Arizona State University to start the Center for Environmental Biotechnology in the newly formed Biodesign Institute. He was named a Regents’ Professor in 2009, and the Center was endowed as the Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnology in 2011.

Rittmann was the President of the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors in 1990-91, the same organization’s Distinguished Lecture in 2004, chairman of two National Research Council (NRC) committees concerning in situ bioremediation, vice-chairman of the NRC’s Water Science and Technology Board, and Editor-in-Chief of Biodegradation.

All seminars are held from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Lunch is provided at 12:00 noon.
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