My research interests are guided by the desire to enable continued human development while also minimizing impacts on the environment. Read more below about some of my research activities with students.
Resource Recovery from Wastewater
We currently have two funded projects with the Water Environment and Reuse Foundation (WE&RF) looking into the potential for recovering numerous resources from wastewater. Possible products that can be generated or recovered from wastewater include volatile acids (e.g., acetate), biopolymers, hydrogen peroxide, rare earth elements, and even genetic information contained in bacterial plasmids or chromosomal DNA. Look for our WE&RF reports coming out soon:
NTRY3R13 Beyond Nutrients: Recovering Carbon and Other Commodity Products from Wastewater (Fall, 2016)
NTRY8R15a Advances in Recovering Plasmids from Wastewater - A State of the Science (Summer, 2016)
NTRY8R15b Rare Earth Elements from Wastewater (Summer, 2017)
Part of the Teacher-Scholar paradigm at Bucknell University includes continuous innovation in undergraduate education and pedagogy. I seek to strengthen student engagement, learning, and retention through application of systems thinking and incorporation of technology for geospatial understanding. Some of this work is disseminated through the following publications:
Gilmore, K.R. (2016) Teaching life cycle assessment in environmental engineering: a disinfection case study for students. Int J Life Cycle Assess, DOI10.1007/s11367-016-1138-1.
Glathar, J., M.R. Oswald Beiler, and K.R. Gilmore. (2015) "Exploring Civil Engineering Through Applied GIS." In STEM and GIS in Higher Education. Ed. David J. Cowen. Redlands, CA: ESRI(R).
Nitrogen is the most significant macronutrient impacting eutrophication of natural water bodies like the Chesapeake Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. some of my work involves mitigating nitrogen discharges to the environment, through the development of autotrophic biological nitrogen removal processes:
Gilmore, K.R., A. Terada, S. Lackner, B.F. Smets, N.G. Love, and J.L. Garland. (2013) Autotrophic nitrogen removal in a membrane-aerated biofilm reactor under continuous aeration: a demonstration. Environ Eng Sci, 30(1):38-45.
Gilmore, K.R., J.C. Little, B.F. Smets, and N.G. Love. (2009) Oxygen transfer model for a flow-through hollow-fiber membrane biofilm reactor. J Environ Eng, ASCE, 135(9):806-814.
I am currently consulting with a small business entity on nitrogen removal research funded by NASA, treating the type of high-nitrogen wastewater expected during a long-term space travel or planetary base mission, to facilitate closed-loop water recycling.
Environmental Impacts of Development
Development of urban societies brings accompanying impacts on the environment and ecosystem services that support life. In our region, exploration and development of deep shale gas reserves has the potential for impacts ranging from local to global. We are quantifying some of these life cycle impacts, while also developing methods to track emissions to the environment.
Gilmore, K.R., R.L. Martin, and J. Glathar. (2014) Transport of hydraulic fracturing water and wastes in the Susquehanna River basin, Pennsylvania. J. Environ Eng, ASCE, 140(5), B4013002.
Gilmore, K.R. and H.V. Luong. (2016) Improved method for measuring total dissolved solids. Analytical Lett, 49(11):1772-1782.