University of Arkansas researchers and researchers from two other institutions have received a $2.4 million National Science Foundation grant to develop a chemical process that converts nitrogen and phosphorous from wastewater into commercial fertilizer.
The goal of the project is to make an energy-efficient fertilizer that competes with conventional, commercially available fertilizers. It will also be environmentally less harmful to produce.
The grant will fund the education and training of six full-time graduate students, one post-doctoral researcher and multiple undergraduate researchers.
The research team consists of lead principal investigator and UA professor Lauren Greenlee, UA professors Greg Thoma, Jennie Popp and Kristofor Brye; Andrew Herring from the Colorado School of Mines and Julie Renner from Case Western Reserve University.
Greenlee said in a news release that the project also seeks to engage the local and regional community on issues related to nutrient recycling. Each year, the team will host a workshop at UA and will invite regional stakeholders from across the food supply chain to discuss challenges and form partnerships.