Xiaoliang Wang

Dr. Wang’s overarching research theme is to understand air pollutant emissions, transformations, and impacts. Specifically, his research interests include physical and chemical characterization of aerosols, pollution source emission measurement, and aerosol instrument development.
Dr. Wang has developed several widely used aerosol instruments. He is a co-inventor of nanoparticle aerodynamic lenses for efficiently delivering particles into aerosol mass spectrometers and the TSI DustTrak DRX Aerosol Monitor for measuring size-segregated aerosol mass concentrations in real time. He led the design of the DRI Portable Emissions Measurement System (PEMS) that has been used for characterizing gases and particles from vehicle exhaust, stack emissions, biomass burning, and biomass-derived syngas. Dr. Wang also led the design of the DRI Model 2015 Multiwavelength Thermal/Optical Carbon Analyzer that has been commercialized and used worldwide.
Dr. Wang has been studying real-world emissions from pollution sources with the goal of improving air quality management. His projects include researching dust emissions in underground coal mines, tailpipe and non-tailpipe (i.e., brake and tire wear, as well as road dust) emissions from vehicle traffic, toxic gas and particle emissions from the open burning of household solid waste in South Africa, smoke emissions from burning lithium-ion batteries and spacecraft-relevant materials, and mining fleet/industrial stack/fugitive dust emissions in the oil sands region of Canada. Recently, he participated in several projects to study the impact of visibility, air quality, and atmospheric deposition of particles generated from wildfires and prescribed burns in the Lake Tahoe Basin.
Dr. Wang is an active participant in several scientific organizations. He conducts peer reviews for scientific publications and funding agencies. He served as co-chair and chair of the Instrumentation Working Group of the American Association of Aerosol Research (AAAR) annual conferences and chair of the Young Investigators Committee of the AAAR.
Dr. Wang has been granted three patents and published three book chapters and 90+ peer-reviewed journal articles. He is the recipient of the 2020 AAAR Benjamin Y. H. Liu Award that recognizes outstanding contributions to aerosol instrumentation and experimental techniques. Most recently, he received the 2021 DRI Science Medal for his outstanding scientific contributions.

Ehsan Vahidi

Dr. Ehsan Vahidi is an interdisciplinary researcher who has crossed traditional boundaries between metallurgical engineering and sustainability sciences. His research takes fundamental environmental engineering and translates this into applied settings, primarily in the mining and metallurgical industries. Dr. Vahidi received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Materials and Metallurgical Engineering from Sharif University of Technology and the University of Tehran, respectively. After earning his second master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of South Florida, he obtained his Ph.D. from Purdue University in Environmental & Ecological Engineering. Prior to joining UNR as an Assistant Professor in 2020, Dr. Vahidi was a Postdoctoral Associate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Erica Marti

Dr. Erica Marti’s main research interests are in water and wastewater treatment, especially in the area of transforming wastewater for a beneficial reuse (drinking water, irrigation water, etc.). Past work has included understanding the formation of unregulated disinfection byproducts (DBPs) and investigating different methods to prevent their formation. DBPs are created when water is disinfected with chemical oxidants like different forms of chlorine and ozone. We use the chemicals to inactivate pathogens (bacteria, viruses, etc.) but the chemicals can react with other dissolved organics and inorganics to create unwanted byproducts, some of which are toxic. Therefore, water treatment professionals must work carefully to provide the right amount of oxidant for disinfection while minimizing DBPs.
Future research topics include remediation of polluted groundwater, adsorption of heavy metals from wastewater using biochar made from agricultural waste products, uptake of DBPs in plants grown using treated wastewater, and optimizing toxicity assays for DBPs.
Dr. Marti also conducts research in the area of STEM education and has led several Teacher Professional Development programs for integrated STEM lessons and engineering design.

Yu (Frank) Yang

Dr. Yang’s current research interests and strengths are focused on the organic matter-mineral-bacteria interfacial redox reactions, critical for global cycles of carbon/nitrogen and emergent contaminants.

Daniel Gerrity

Water and wastewater treatment: biological, physical, and chemical treatment processes

Indirect potable reuse (IPR) and direct potable reuse (DPR): Water quality, public health, and public perception

Advanced oxidation processes (AOPs): Ozone, ozone/H2O2, UV/H2O2, TiO2 photocatalysis

Trace organic contaminants (TOrCs), including pharmaceuticals and endocrine disrupting compounds

Environmental microbiology (disinfection and methods): Bacteria, viruses, and protozoan parasites

Erick Bandala

Erick R. Bandala, Assistant Research Professor for Advanced Water Technologies at the Desert Research Institute in Las Vegas, NV. Dr. Bandala holds PhD degree in Engineering, a Master degree in Organic Chemistry and a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering. Before his current position, he was faculty member of the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Universidad de Las Americas Puebla (2007-2013) and the Department of Chemical, Food and Environmental Engineering (2013 to 2015) and titular researcher (1993-2007) at the Mexican Institute of Water Technology (belonging to the Ministry of Environment Mexico) in Morelos, Mexico. Dr. Bandala has taught graduate and undergraduate courses covering fundamentals and applications of environmental sciences and engineering with particular emphasis in water treatment processes for disinfection and decontamination, soil treatment and its application for site restoration. Dr. Bandala has been the recipient of several prestigious awards, Visiting Professor at the Department of Technology and Environmental Design at Appalachian State University (2014), the UDLAP Outstanding Teaching Award 2013, the Puebla State 2012 Science and Technology Award, Professional Hydrologist (Water Quality) by the American Institute of Hydrology, the Rice International Visiting Fellow on Energy, the Environment and Sustainability 2008-2009, National Researcher (Level II) on the National Council of Science and Technology-Mexico (2004-present), visiting Professor at the School of Civil and Agricultural Engineering. Universidad de Concepción, Chile 2004 and 2008 and Invited Researcher at the Plataforma Solar de Almería, Spain (2000). He has research interests in several different topics related with Environmental Engineering including A) Mechanistic aspects of the use and application of solar driven advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) for environmental restoration B) Development of advanced water and soil treatment for site restoration C) Synthesis, characterization and application of nanomaterials for Indoor Farming systems D) Development of Climate Change adaptation methodologies for water security. As result of his research activities, Dr. Bandala is author or co-author of over 100 international publication including 68 peer-reviewed papers in international journals with high impact index (average impact factor 2.7, >1490 citations, h-index 22); 5 books, 25 book chapters and 65 works published in proceedings of international conferences.

Haroon Stephen

Dr. Stephen has diverse research experience in the areas of Remote Sensing, GIS, and GPS applications. His Ph.D. research involved the modeling of microwave scattering and emission behavior of electromagnetic waves over Saharan sand surfaces and Amazon vegetation. His ongoing research interests include applications of remote sensing and GIS technologies to water resource mapping; drought study; and climate change study. Presently, he is involved in several Federal and State sponsored research projects involving geospatial data research and applications. I am also developing a geovisualization facility at UNLV that will provide state-of-the-art visualization for the research and educational needs of UNLV and the region.

His research involves development of Remote Sensing and GIS technologies and their application to Natural Resource Mapping. This includes modeling of microwave remote sensing measurements of backscatter and radiometric temperature to understand spatial and temporal interconnections of geomorphology, vegetation, hydrology, ecology, and water resources.

Eric Marchand

Dr. Marchand’s research interests:  Optimizing biological processes for the treatment of water and wastewater; development and testing of membrane bioreactor technology; novel water reuse strategies; bioremediation of acid mine drainage; microbial ecology in natural and engineered systems; and biogeochemical reactions in the environment.

Sajjad Ahmad

Dr. Sajjad Ahmad is an Associate Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. His research is focused on application of systems approach to understand and manage complex water and environmental systems. The goal is to provide decision support to policy makers for sustainable management resources. The water-energy nexus group is studying energy use in water and wastewater treatment plans and energy use in water distribution systems. Ahmad has also contributed to research on malaria control efforts in sub-Saharan Africa with his study of water ponds that provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes.