Labs and facilities
Research progress is rooted in varying degrees to both technical expertise and a creative spirit. This pairing motivates the student to pose and answer new questions that advance progress in civil and environmental engineering. We support the research process by providing a full-range of labs and supporting facilities so that your basic engineering education as an undergraduate is facilitated, and if you are a graduate student, your research progress continues unabated.
Environmental assessment laboratory
In these photos, we show lab and field equipment for surface and subsurface assessment of the hydraulics and other soil and landscape physical attributes that regulate hydrologic fluxes (groundwater, soil water, surface water and water quality sampling). We are particularly well set-up for and experienced in urban field work. Specialized equipment for assessment of unsaturated zone hydraulics on undisturbed field soil core samples include the METER HYPROP2/WP4C system for detailed determination of the soil moisture release curve and related hydraulic parameters.
Structural engineering testing and assessment facilities
The Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering has been recently awarded a proposal to establish and maintain a Center of Excellence in Structural Durability by the Michigan Department of Transportation. The Center is structured to provide solutions to durability-related concerns by developing and synthesizing advanced research results on materials, design, construction, repair, and maintenance of highway structures, primarily bridges, in order to prolong service life.
Pictures left to right are custom and MTS testing rigs, and an example of a smaller environment chamber for controlled weathering of samples.
Geotechnical engineering teaching lab
Our department supports the undergraduate course Introduction to Geotechnical Engineering, and departmental research efforts involving soils and aggregate materials with a newly-renovated lab facility.
Hydraulics teaching lab
Hydraulics and water flow in open-channel and piped conveyances are fundamental to training civil-environmental engineers. We provide comprehensive teaching facilities to get hands-on experience with foundational principles and methods through apparatus like that pictured here, which are (left to right) a flume rig, fluid mechanics workbench, and pipe hydraulics demonstrations.
Environmental research lab
We maintain a large environmental research laboratory footprint, composed of 5 separate modules, dedicated to research in the areas of: microplastics, biogeochemical cycling, drinking water and wastewater processes, extraction of rare-earth metals, and contaminant fate and transport. If we don't have the instrumentation that you need for your work, we can likely find it at our Wayne State Lumigen facility that maintains and supports a world-class inventory of analytic instrumentation, or access through our close collaborative associations with other departments and local universities.
The Healthy Urban Waters lab
The Healthy Urban Waters laboratory includes two field stations, one at Lake St. Clair Metropark and the other at the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA) Waterworks Park Drinking Water Treatment Plant.
Information about these field stations and other activities of Healthy Urban Waters can be found on Healthy Urban Waters.