Last September, the Port of Vancouver USA’s Environmental Team and Oregon State University (OSU) entered into a partnership to help Ecological Engineering students understand the importance of water treatment and management.

In our last update we shared how port employees Mary Mattix and Matt Graves traveled to OSU to serve on a group of panelists to evaluate the students’ water treatment plans. The plans focused on one of four pollutant streams: rainwater runoff, domestic graywater, nursery runoff or landfill leachate. After receiving feedback, the groups completed their designs and proceeded with testing.

Environmental Manager Matt Graves views Grattix design at OSU

In mid-March, Mattix and Graves went back to OSU to evaluate the final designs and presentations from the students.

Presentations included test results, visuals and a Q&A session at the end. Students had to provide support with engineering calculations and consider the life cycle, cost and maintenance of their designs. Students also got the opportunity to partner with local businesses for donations of materials to help build their water-treatment plans.

This partnership with OSU provided valuable feedback for the port with data on different designs for future adjustments to our own Grattix.

“The knowledge these college students have is very promising,” said Mattix. There’s a bright future for them and (the advancement of) stormwater research (as a whole).”

The port enjoyed this partnership with OSU and looks forward to more opportunities for research, development and creativity.