Water

Q&A: New sources of water with desalination research

A new and ambitious research project looks to develop affordable devices to recycle most of the water we now throw away, as well as to desalinate saltwater. The project’s research director describes the project’s vision and operation.

Archaea hold clues to ancient ocean temperatures

Scientists at Stanford have identified molecules that tough microbes use to survive in warming waters, opening a window more broadly into studying conditions in ancient seas.

Poverty as a disease trap

The realities of subsistence living in a region of Senegal hard hit by schistosomiasis make reinfection likely, despite mass drug administration. Stanford researchers find that engaging communities in the design of disease control programs could help.

Smart faucet could help save water

An experiment with a water-saving “smart” faucet shows potential for reducing water use. The catch? Unbeknownst to study participants, the faucet’s smarts came from its human controller.

Generating energy from wastewater

A new battery made from affordable and durable materials generates energy from places where salt and fresh waters mingle. The technology could make coastal wastewater treatment plants energy-independent and carbon neutral.

Bill Lane Center for the American West —

Putting a tempest into a teapot

To ease the pain of new state rules, engineers are looking to harness an unconventional and unwieldy source of water: the torrential storms that sometimes blast across the Pacific Ocean and soak California.

How deep-ocean vents fuel massive phytoplankton blooms

A new study suggests vents in the seafloor may affect life near the ocean’s surface and the global carbon cycle more than previously thought. It’s the first to show how iron rising from beneath Earth’s crust stimulates massive phytoplankton blooms.

Stanford School of Engineering —

Can a drone reveal the murky secrets of San Francisco Bay?

Measurements of suspended sediment concentrations reveal a lot about the health of a waterway, but information has been difficult to obtain. A new approach uses a drone to take high-resolution photos to reveal turbidity.

Where can flooded fields help replenish groundwater?

Overpumping in California’s Central Valley has depleted groundwater storage capacity and caused the land to sink. A new model could help zero in on where water managers can replenish aquifers by flooding fields.

How machine learning can help regulators

Cassandra Handan-Nader and Daniel Ho have created an algorithm that reads satellite images to help environmental regulators identify potentially hazardous agricultural facilities more efficiently than traditional approaches.