Environmental and Sustainable Engineering is a discipline that builds on knowledge, discovery, and information from math and basic sciences to solve the critical environmental issues of today. For the ESE faculty at the College of Nanotechnology, Science, and Engineering, this requires building a strong research portfolio aimed at addressing problems both locally and globally.

Led by Professor and Chair Yanna Liang, the Department of Environmental and Sustainable Engineering includes a team of researchers studying issues such as air pollution and prevention, water and wastewater treatment and reuse, water resource management, soil and groundwater clean-up, and hazardous waste remediation.

Liang’s faculty researchers include Assistant Professors Md. Aynul Bari, Rixiang Huang, Kyoung-Yeol Kim and Yaoze Liu. They are collaborating on research aimed at providing long-term solutions that are both economical and sustainable.

ESE faculty and student lab








Environmental and Sustainable Engineering Lab


ese lab





Faculty Research Interests


Md Aynul Bari

Characterization of ambient and indoor air quality, source appointment for controlling emissions, sustainable air pollution management, atmospheric deposition, environment impact assessment, influences of oil and gas development on air quality, household air pollution, low-cost air quality sensors, exposure assessment.


Rixiang Huang

Wastes to resources conversion via material, technology, and process innovations; Cycling of critical elements and contaminants in a natural environment.


Kyoung-Yeol Kim

Energy recovery from wastewater, Microbial electrochemical technologies for resource recovery, Developing energy-efficient wastewater treatment process, Membrane technology for wastewater treatment.


Yanna Liang

Microbial ecology in engineered and natural systems; fate and transport of engineered nanoparticles and emerging contaminants in aqueous and soil environments; microbial electrochemical cells for CO2 reduction; biochemical conversion of lignocellulosic feedstocks to biofuels: pretreatment, hydrolysis and fermentation; thermochemical conversion of renewable feedstocks to biofuels and bioproducts; proper utilization of industrial and agricultural wastes or by-products for producing value-added commodities through holistic approaches; water reuse and wastewater treatment; bioremediation and biodegradation of organic contaminants in subsurface and groundwater.


Yaoze Liu

Water resources, hydrology, water quality, green infrastructure, best management practices, land use change, climate change, optimization.


Paul Millard

Biosensor design, fluorescence technology, immune response to infectious disease.


Research Projects