Water Quality and Technology

michael cohenMike Cohen, Professor, Biology Department, SSU

Contact: (707) 664-3413; cohenm@sonoma.edu; website

Area of Water Expertise: Environmental microbiology, constructed wetlands, bioremediation, anaerobic digestion of aquatic weeds. 

Water-Related Courses Taught: Bacteriology (BIOL 340), Environmental Microbiology and Biotechnology (BIOL 338)

Water-Related Research: A Fuel from Aquatic Biomass (FAB) research program conducted in collaboration with the City of Santa Rosa Laguna Treatment Plant from 2007 to 2012 explored three primary lines of investigation:
(1) utilization of native aquatic vegetation to ‘polish’ treated wastewater by removing nutrients and man-made pollutants;
(2) biofuel production via anaerobic digestion of harvested aquatic vegetation in combination with agricultural waste; and
(3) application of spent digestate as a soil amendment to promote plant growth and suppress root disease.

Water-Related Community Connections: I have worked for many years with City of Santa Rosa on water treatment.


mark perri

Mark Perri, Assistant Professor, Chemistry Department, SSU

Contact: (707) 664-2440; mark.perri@sonoma.edu; no website

Area of Water Expertise: atmospheric chemistry; water quality

Water-Related Courses Taught: General Chemistry with Quantitative Analysis (CHEM 125B)

Water-Related Research: We study chemistry that takes place in our atmosphere, as well as anthropogenic influences on our local watershed, e.g. nitrate, phosphate, dissolved oxygen, and hydrocarbons.

Water-Related Community Connections: None

jeremy qualls

Jeremy Qualls, Associate Professor, Department of Physics, SSU

Contact: (707) 484-9269; quallsj@sonoma.edu; website

Area of Water Expertise: freshman course development focused on watershed issues; hydrophilic material development; thermodynamics (towards heat systems and cryogenics); air to water collection methods with low electrical footprints; novel filtration methods of air and water

Water-Related Courses Taught (if applicable): Sustainability in My World (SCI 120)

Water-Related Research: Current water related research involves novel methods to harvest water from the air and developing new hydrophilic nanofibers.

Water-Related Community Connections: If bulk air to water methods are successful, community partners will be needed to test implement large water collectors in various locations around the region.