2015-16 Seminars

The Civil and Environmental Engineering Department seminar series is held on two Wednesdays a month from 4:00-4:50 pm in the Classroom Building, CB204E. The SD Mines and engineering community are welcome to attend. Professional development hour (PDH) certificates will be mailed to attendees upon request for the seminars noted below. For more information, contact Dr. Soonkie Nam ( Soonkie.Nam@sdsmt.edu).

Spring 2016

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Title: Assessment of corrosion aspects of flowback water in carbon steel transmission network and its associated environmental impacts
Presenter: Govinda Chilkoor, Graduate Research Assistant at SD Mines
Abstract: Flowback water disposal from Bakken’s hydraulic fracturing wells has become a major issue due to increasing well density and high volume of flowback water produced in this region. The high disposal cost through truck transport and the water stress in the region is pushing companies to either pursue in-situ recycle of flowback water or setup integrated pipeline gathering networks from different wells to class II disposal sites. The flowback water has high total dissolved solids (upto 300,000 mg/L), high concentrations of halides (chlorine and bromide) and metals (Sr, Zn), organic chemicals (cyclohexane) and microbial activity (anthropogenic-source-induced sulphate reducing bacteria) which present environmental and health concerns. Further, these contaminants can result in corrosion issues to the flow back gathering metal pipelines (e.g. carbon steel) and its early failure. The corrosion deposits can initiate pitting corrosion; they can also adsorb and concentrate metals and organic chemicals on its surface, contaminating soil and surface water during a potential pipeline accident. Flowback water contaminants can interact with in river water sources containing halides act as carcinogenic DBP precursors in downstream drinking water treatment plant. We performed a series of chromatographic, spectroscopic, and microscopic tests to reveal the potential organic and metal contaminants of concern to living beings. Bromides and chlorides concentration were found to higher than drinking water which can pose serious concerns for water treatment plant. We report 5 fold higher corrosion rates for Carbon steel exposed to Bakken’s flow back water when compared to residential wastewater, using electrochemical methods: Linear Polarization & Potentiostatic-Electrochemical Impedance spectroscopy. The corrosion deposits characterized by SEM, EDX, XRD and TEM found Akaganeite to adsorb metals (Strontium, copper and Zirconium) on its surface.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Title: Turbulent Circular Culvert Flow
Presenter: Amin Mohebbi, Ph.D., P.E. Clinical Assistant Professor, Washington State University
Abstract: Culverts are popular conveyance structures in America and Canada to be used as a fish passage or in sewage collection and disposal systems. Fish passage design criteria is based on biological capabilities of fish whereas it should satisfy hydraulic and hydrological constraints as well. Failing to provide enough low velocity regions for aquatic organisms may result in their mass extinctions. Commercial Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) packages serve as the best tool to model fluid motion. However, due to the high Reynolds numbers encountered in real world, they are computationally intensive. Further, they show instability near geometrically (bed roughness) and physically (air-water interface) complicated boundaries. This presentation describes an attempt to model Navier-Stokes Equations for a steady state and uniform circular open channel flow at mild slopes, resulting in a numerical solution for a partially-filled pipe velocity distribution. The model was verified against experimental data collected utilizing the state of the art Particle Image Velocimetry and Acoustic Doppler Velocimetry. Bed roughness effect was also investigated to simulate the embedded culverts and/or culverts filled with sediment. The validated numerical models were used to develop a novel design tool which resulted in an optimum cross-section (satisfying economic constraints) along with an enough low velocity region to facilitate safe fish passage (satisfying environmental constraints).
BIO: Amin Mohebbi earned a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Islamic Azad University, Iran, an M.S. in Civil Engineering from University of Tabriz, Iran, and a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from University of Nebraska at Lincoln in 2014 specialized in Water Resources Engineering. He continued to work as a post-doctoral research fellow after getting his Ph.D. degree at the same institution, and started the current clinical assistant professor position at Washington State University in Jan 2015.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Title: MS THESIS DEFENSE: Simulation of the Effects of Deforestation on Headwater Streams in the Black Hills, Western South Dakota
Presenter: Brian L. Freed, EIT, Graduate Research Assistant at SD Mines
Similar to elsewhere in the Rocky Mountains, mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) infestation has affected large areas of the central and southern Black Hills of western South Dakota.  The hydrologic response of watersheds to pine beetle infestation has been studied by other researchers, but typically for sub-alpine settings where runoff is dominantly derived from snowpack. There is a need for studies of the hydrologic response of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests, which are not a snow-dominated system, but are rather semi-arid settings where evapotranspiration potentially plays a greater role in the hydrologic budget. The Rainfall-Response Aquifer and Watershed Flow (RRAWFLOW) model has been successfully used to model springflow in the Black Hills, including Rhoads Fork Spring in the headwaters of Rapid Creek. This presentation will describe RRAWFLOW models that simulate changes in the hydrologic response since 2008 of Black Hills watersheds to the cycle of beetle infestation, tree mortality, and regrowth.  Projected response from the year 2015 to 2030 was simulated by RRAWFLOW on the basis of climate model simulations and various synthetic climate scenarios. Each climate scenario was run with and without the tree mortality from the mountain pine beetle to determine the potential effects caused by the infestation. Results show a maximum increase in mean annual streamflow of 7 percent in the Upper Rapid Creek watershed during the wettest climate scenario, with other basins showing similar results. The changes to streamflow from the mountain pine beetle infestation during normal or dry climatic conditions are perceived to be negligible compared to the annual variability of the watersheds examined. This study is a cooperative effort between the U.S. Geological Survey, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, and the City of Rapid City.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Time & Place: 11AM at CM310
Title: Hydrologic Modeling: Development, Calibration, Implementation and Future Trends
Presenter: Stu Geza, Assistant Research Professor, Colorado School of Mines, Golden CO
Sustainable water resource management requires new approaches beyond the scope previously practiced. Cross‐disciplinary integration is becoming a primary characteristic of hydrologic research, motivating new research and educational models. This shift from discipline-centric approaches to more holistic approaches demands an understanding of how diverse disciplines in science and engineering could complement to meet the goal of sustainable water resource management.  There is also a shift in hydrologic research from a component based system to linkages and feedbacks across all components including the atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, and biosphere. New approaches to observations such as remote sensing and cloud-based systems for data integration offer opportunities to measure environmental change at much larger scales than previously feasible. The development of new sensors offers significant opportunities to improve real-time learning and forecasting. Building water resources research and education program demands adapting to this paradigm shift. Current trends in hydrologic science and case studies on hydrology, water quality, climate change and development of multidisciplinary decision support tools are presented. The case study includes application of a Watershed Analysis Risk management Framework (WARMF) model to evaluate impacts of point and nonpoint sources including septic systems on stream nitrate and phosphorus concentration in Turkey Creek Watershed, located in Jefferson County, Colorado. The study involves a rigorous sensitivity analysis, automated parameter estimation and evaluation of prediction uncertainty for hydrology and water quality. The calibrated model was used to evaluate scenarios including the impacts of population growth and impacts of conversion of septic systems to sewer systems. A similar modeling approach was used to assess the effects of climate change on the water resources for a 17,800 square miles Upper Colorado River Basin using climate projections derived from global circulation models and the WARMF hydrologic model. Precipitation temperature and stream flow projections are presented.  Research highlights on development of practical decision support tools applicable to management of water resources will also be presented. This includes tools for Predicting Nitrogen Flux from Soil Treatment Units and a decision support tool for selection of appropriate wastewater treatment technologies for urban and industrial wastewater considering water re-use. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

TITLE: MS THESIS DEFENSE: Potential organic carbon exports within the upper Rapid Creek watershed due to mountain pine beetle outbreak
PRESENTER: Erik Vik, EIT, Graduate Research Assistant at SD Mines 
 Since 1996, Mountain pine beetle (MPB) (Dendroctonus ponderosae) infestation has impacted 174,000 hectares of forest within the Black Hills of South Dakota. The goal of this research was to investigate the water quality implications of MPB infestation, and to create a foundation by which additional Black Hills MPB studies can be built. Sampling was conducted from Rapid Creek, Castle Creek, Rhoades Fork Spring, and small tributaries contributing to these streams throughout times of different precipitation and stream flow. Total organic carbon (TOC) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) testing was completed using a Shimadzu® TOC-L CSN TOC analyzer for all collected samples. Generally, an increase in stream flow rate resulted in an increase in TOC and DOC concentration. A more general water chemistry analysis was also carried out using field probes (ExStik® II EC 500, Oakton® ORP testr, and Orbeco® TB 200) and laboratory Hach® reagent methods. Hardness parameters were highest for groundwater influenced sites, and experienced a dilution during high precipitation times. Certain sites with heavy acid mine influence showed great variability with general water chemistry. Pearson product-moment correlations showed that organic carbon concentration correlated highly with stream flow rate, however organic carbon concentration correlated rather weakly with MPB impacted area in each sample location sub-basin. Organic carbon did correlate with MPB impacted area from the year 2012 however, for certain Pearson product-moment analyses. This could indicate that 3 years of decomposition (2012 to 2015), is optimal for organic carbon leaching. Aside from organic carbon, water chemistry appeared to be unrelated to MPB impact. Additionally, disinfection by-product (DBP) formation potential, resulting from chlorine disinfection, was evaluated using empirical predictor models produced by Rathbun (1996b), Rodriguez et al. (2000), Ates et al. (2007), and Semerjian et al. 2008, for collected samples. DBP concentrations varied widely depending on DBP model, however nearly all DBP results fell under EPA regulatory limits of 80 μg/L and 60 μg/L, respectively, indicating that organic carbon in this study area was not particularly prone to forming DBPs upon chlorination. Specific ultraviolet absorption (SUVA) values were generally low for all samples, indicating low aromaticity and low DBP formation potential as well.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Time & Place: 3PM at CM310
Title: Water Resources Management in the Internet Age: Embracing the Data Deluge  

Presenter: Saurav Kumar, Ph.D., Research Associate, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
We are going through a revolution in information and sensor technologies, which has begun to reshape how environmental data are being collected, used, and shared. These developments have forced the water resources community to reinvestigate several assumptions that have been built into water resources modeling, and the ways calibrated models are delivered to the decision-makers. We are heading towards a new paradigm where the models are available to the stakeholders through web-browsers, and take advantage of real-time data to make better predictions and uncertainty estimations. In this talk, I will discuss how water resources management may benefit from data deluge and present some of my current research projects that have built on the advancement in information technology to allow stakeholders direct access to water resources data and models. I will also discuss how data analysis has helped in deciphering the combined impacts of changing climate and anthropogenic developments on water yield in Northern Virginia. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

TITLE: An Interactive Structural Design
PRESENTER: Tanner Friesen, Estimator, McClone Construction, Denver, CO - Collaboration with: John Jucha, Structural Engineer (P.E., S.E.), KL&A Inc Structural Engineers and Builders, Golden, CO
ABSTRACT: All the problem solving in school, but for what? As a student I asked the question countless times. This presentation is designed for the sole purpose of answering that question. This extremely interactive presentation will walk through a step by step design build parking garage and show a direct correlation with your education and your future career.
BIO:  Tanner Friesen graduated from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in 2012 with a B.S. in Civil Engineering/Construction Management and was also a member of the Hardrocker Basketball Team. From 2012-2014 he worked with Kiewit Construction’s Underground division. Some highlights include the Devil’s Slide Highway Tunnels in Pacifica, CA (aka The Tom Lantos Tunnels), the Spadina Subway Extension in Toronto, ON, and the Kemano Backup Tunnel in Northern British Columbia. In 2014 he accepted his current position as an Estimator with McClone Construction in Denver, CO.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

TITLE: Ethics in the Workplace
PRESENTER: Todd Kenner, President and Chief Executive Officer of RESPEC  

ABSTRACT: Ethical decisions are not just professional choices, but life choices.  We will explore the challenges with making Right vs. Right decisions and choosing between competing goods.  Asking ourselves four questions, we will decide between compelling responsibilities to define “your way.”
BIO: Todd Kenner brings more than 30 years of experience in the engineering and consulting industry to his role as President and Chief Executive Officer of RESPEC.  Mr. Kenner joined RESPEC in 2009 to lead growth and ownership strategies for the company before being elevated to President in 2011.  Prior to his current tenure with RESPEC, Mr. Kenner was President of a $700 million A/E/C infrastructure consulting firm.  Over the past five years, Mr. Kenner has led RESPEC’s market diversification, growth and leadership transition resulting in the doubling of revenues and profits.  RESPEC’s market success has been achieved through relentless client service and building on specialized technical services that are industry differentiators.  Mr. Kenner has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and an Honorary Doctorate in public service from the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology.  Aligned with RESPEC’s commitment to social responsibility, Mr. Kenner serves on various community and non-profit Boards including: South Dakota School of Mines & Technology University Advisory Board, Rapid City Economic Development Foundation and the Community Health Center of the Black Hills Board.
**PDH Credit Available

Fall 2015

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Time & Place: 4pm at CB204E
TITLE: Bioelectrochemical/Membrane Technologies for Enabling Energy-Efficient Wastewater Reuse in Power Plants

PRESENTER: Namita Shrestha, PhD Student, CEE, SD Mines 
ABSTRACT: The power plants consume nearly ~40% of the total freshwater withdrawals in the United States. Water usage and electricity generation at thermoelectric power has tremendous impact on Water-Energy Nexus which is of increasing interest in present world. The goal of this research is to evaluate the feasibility of a novel bioelectrochemical approach for treating the municipal wastewater, enabling its reuse as a cooling water in power plants, all with a net production of electric power at ambient conditions. The proposed bioelectrochemical approach is a superior alternative to the energy-intensive aerobic process in a typical wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). The proposed approach can reduce the energy consumption and sludge production by at least 50% each in WWTPs. We obtained promising preliminary results, the power density and COD removal was as high as 2500 mW/m2and 90%. The effluent from biomodule meet the regulated limits for typical contaminants (e.g. BOD, TSS, Ca, Mg, Mn, Cu, Al, and S) of concern in power plants. Residual chemical oxygen demand and sloughed particulates (including microbes) in the effluent of the biomodule will be treated through membrane ultrafiltration (UF), yielding a high-quality effluent for subsequent reuse in power plants.
BIO: Namita Shrestha is a graduate student working with Dr. Gadhamshetty in the CEE department of SD Mines for Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) project. She joined SD Mines on fall 2014 at PhD program of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Currently, she is working on a research for treating municipal wastewater using microbial fuel cell and reusing the treated water for power plant cooling. Namita is originally from Nepal and got her Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus, Nepal. She completed her Master’s degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from same institute.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Time & Place: 12pm at CM 310
TITLE: M.S. Thesis Defense: Improving the Engineering Properties of Expansive Belle Fourche Clay by Using Chemical Additives

  Mustafa Dayioglu, Graduate Student, CEE, SD Mines  
ABSTRACT: Improving the engineering properties of expansive soils is very critical in northern and mid-west regions of the United States. Various treatment techniques have been used to mitigate the volumetric instability and increase the strength of expansive soils. One of the preferred methods is mixing the expansive soils with chemical additives due to their quick response, high performance, repeatability and reliability. In this study, expansive Belle Fourche clay (B), which was collected from Rapid City, South Dakota, was mixed with the following chemical additives; class C fly ash (FC) and class F fly ash (FF) and lime. Swelling pressure (SWP) and unconfined compressive strength (UCS) of the mixtures were analyzed under different curing periods. Furthermore, freeze and thaw (F-T) effects on the swelling and strength properties of the clay and selected mixtures were investigated.
BIO: Mustafa Dayioglu was graduated from Istanbul Technical University with his BA degree in Civil Engineering in 2007 and MS degree in the same university in 2010. From 2007 to 2012, he worked at several challenging and unique civil engineering projects in Turkey. When he moved to the US in 2012, he volunteered at a SHA-funded project at the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park. He started his graduate studies at the Department of Civil Engineering at SD Mines in 2014 and he is expecting to graduate in December 2015. 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Time & Place: 3:00 pm at CM 310
TITLE: From Roadkill to Road Wise: How to Design Wildlife Crossing Structures Across the West

PRESENTER:  Patricia Cramer, PhD, Independent Wildlife Researcher and Assistant Professor, Department of Wildland Resources, Utah State University
ABSTRACT:  Wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVC) are a major problem in South Dakota. An average of 5,000 of these collisions are reported each year, and many times more wild animals are killed in unreported crashes. South Dakota will need rising star engineers and wildlife ecologists to help design the best solutions to mitigate these collisions today and in the future. Dr. Cramer works with transportation and wildlife agencies across the Western U.S. to help research wildlife crossing structures and create the most effective designs that pass mule deer, elk, moose, and other wildlife. This talk will give an overview of the science and practice of wildlife crossing structures, and detail the scope of the problem of WVC in South Dakota and steps for the future.
BIO: Patricia Cramer is an independent wildlife researcher as well as a Research Assistant Professor at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. She works at the state and national levels to research and guide transportation mitigation that accommodates wildlife. She has researched wildlife crossings and helped create processes to prioritize wildlife-vehicle collision areas in: Utah, Idaho, Montana, Washington, Oregon, Vermont, South Dakota, and nationally. Her work in Utah to research the best structural designs for wildlife crossings won the 2013 Federal Highways Environmental Excellence Award for Research. She shares her knowledge with both wildlife professionals and engineers to help agencies create the most effective wildlife crossing structures.
**PDH Credit Available

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

TITLE: Living Off the Grid
PRESENTER:  John Niemela, P.E., Vice President of the ASCE Black Hills Branch, Rapid City, SD
ABSTRACT:  When looking for a retirement home in the Black Hills in 2006, the property that best fit our requirements just happened to be off-grid with a diesel generator, inverter and battery bank to provide household electrical power.  In fact, it also happened to be an earth-sheltered home.  The most difficult decision was whether we could live with the need to run the generator on a regular basis, which we decided was not a major problem.  After living off-grid full-time now for the past 8 years, the addition of solar power and other improvements have simplified our routine and reduced the amount of fossil fuel we use.  The presentation will focus on the use of solar power for rural living in the Black Hills.
BIO: Mr. John Niemela graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1974 with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering and spent 32 years in the power industry working for Minnesota Power in Duluth, MN., primarily in the renewable energy field of hydroelectric power.  His primary responsibilities included relicensing of MP's 11 hydroelectric stations, dam safety, dam rehabilitation, and operating license compliance.  John has been active in ASCE serving as President of the Duluth Section and currently Vice President of the Black Hills Branch and Practitioner Advisor at the SDSM&T.  John is a Registered Professional Engineer in Minnesota and South Dakota. 
**PDH Credit Available

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

TITLE:  Recent Experience on Research Based Dam Removal, Stream Restoration, and Levee Design
  Bret Lingwall,  Ph.D., P.E., Assistant Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, SD Mines
ABSTRACT:  Water projects around the globe are commonly undergone with minimal engineering or rarely utilize the latest research to enhance the design for constructability, sustainability, or long term performance. Often, these simplified designs are also more costly and potentially dangerous. However, when up to date research is implemented on projects, the three goals of constructability, sustainability, and long term performance can all be met economically. This presentation will show how inter-disciplinary use of research based practice is changing how engineers work across the country with contractors, stakeholders, and owners to deliver vital water projects to the public. 
BIO:  Dr. Lingwall specializes in geotechnical and earthquake engineering; with 4 years of teaching experience prior to joining SDSM&T since earning his PhD in 2011. His research has been sponsored primarily by industry. Dr. Lingwall has published over 20 journal papers, conference papers and research reports. His active research portfolio includes numerical modeling, dams and levees, liquefied soils, seismic hazards analysis, surface fault rupture mitigation, very soft soils, retaining walls, geosynthetics, paving materials, laterally loaded foundations, and ground improvement. Dr. Lingwall also researches EPS Geofoam, and its use to prevent damage to buried structures from faulting, landslides, and lateral spread. Dr. Lingwall also has expertise with modeling, design and construction using EPS geofoam and other lightweight fill materials such as expanded shale or scoria. Dr. Lingwall has 10 years of global high-end design experience on billion dollar infrastructure and energy projects, and has served as a technical advisor for a variety of projects in Canada, South Korea, Guam, and across the US. Dr. Lingwall is currently mentoring a PhD candidate at the University of Utah.
**PDH Credit Available

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

TITLE:  Decentralized Alternatives for Sustainable Water System
  Hyunju Jeong, Ph.D., Research Scientist, Civil and Environmental Engineering, SD Mines
ABSTRACT:  Centralized water systems built with the Romanesque big-pipe concept in urban areas have been criticized for the following issues. Combined or separate sewer systems discharge water pollutants directly into the environment and make urban areas vulnerable to flooding in the case of intense rain events. Besides, water supply systems withdraw all water from the environment, and potable water produced and transported with electricity is used for potable as well as non-potable purposes. Accordingly, decentralized alternatives (e.g., green roof and rainwater harvesting) to control stormwater runoff or save or supply water on site have been used for resolving those issues. However, studies for quantifying their environmental effects are limited to evaluating few alternatives for a same function regardless of external factors such as land use or population density. Thus, three low impact development technologies (i.e., bioretention area, rainwater harvesting, and xeriscaping), and small-scale greywater reclamation systems were targeted on the purpose of simulating how much the alternatives having different functions could improve the environmental sustainability of the City of Atlanta’s centralized water system. The alternatives were designed in nine residential zones and life cycle assessment was conducted to measure environmental sustainability. The research could not only compare the environmental sustainability of decentralized alternatives against centralized water systems, but also suggest a framework to conduct the comparison properly in the aspect of energy-water-land use nexus.
BIO:  Hyunju Jeong is a postdoctoral research scientist working with Dr. Stone and Heidi Sieverding in the CEE department of SDSM&T for a DOT SunGrant project. Currently, she is designing biodiesel supply chains optimized in environmental, economic, and social aspects using GIS and python tools. Dr. Jeong is originally from South Korea and got her doctoral degree in Georgia Tech with the research topic of water system sustainability.
**PDH Credit Available