Explore the Nano World 

 Wen's Research Group​

Wen Zhang, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE

Principal Investigator

Phone: (973) 596-5520 
Fax: (973) 596-5790
Email: wen.zhang@njit.edu

Office Location: Colton Hall 211

Find us on the map: 

Skylar Reed
(City of Newark)

Allen Place
(U of Maryland)

Vincent Prieto (NJSEA)

Event sponsors:

Dr. Wen Zhang teamed with Meadowlands Research and Restoration Institute (MRRI), New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority (NJSEA) and New Jersey Department Environmental Protection (NJDEP) to co-host this event. This workshop attracted diverse groups of participants faculty and students from NJIT, Clarkson, Montclair, Institute of Marine & Environmental Technology at the University of Maryland, state governments such as NJDEP, EPA, several NJ Country Health Department, New Jersey Water Supply Authority,  as well as industries such as Veolia, American Water, Princeton Hydro, BRISEA Inc., Mott MacDonald and Moleaer Inc. The workshop garnered over 90 registered attendees (with over 50 virtual attendees). Several keynote speakers working in algal biotechnology and algal bloom mitigation were invited, including Dr. Bruce Rittmann (ASU), Dr. Robert Newby (NJDEP), Dr. Todd J. Olson (Moleaer), Dr. Meiyin Wu (Montclair State University), Dr. Allen Place (University of Maryland), Dr. Yongsheng Chen (Georgia Tech), Dr. Fred S. Lubnow (PrincetonHydro), Dr. Wen Zhang (NJIT), Dr. Xuezhi Zhang (CAS), Dr. John Civardi (Mott Macdonald), Dr. Yang Yang (Clarkson University), and Skylar Reed (Water Department at City of Newark).

HABs are proliferations of certain photosynthetic organisms (including unicellular phytoplankton and phytobenthos, macroalgae, cyanobacteria, and particular ciliates) that can cause massive fish kills, produce toxins that bioaccumulate in seafood, and/or cause ecological damage through the development of hypoxia/anoxia and other habitat alterations. HABs are natural processes that occur in all aquatic systems and cause worldwide problems with significant economic, socio-cultural, and human health consequences. There is considerable concern that some HABs and/or their associated impacts may be increasing and expanding globally due to a combination of natural and human-driven forcing, including climate change. In the past two decades, improvements in scientific understanding of the complex processes involved in HAB dynamics have contributed to better management of the risks associated with some harmful events. Besides water monitoring, nutrient management, and community projects to prevent nutrient load and reduce algal occurrences have also been focused areas of efforts. Meanwhile, algal biotechnology has long been a national research priority to provide a third generation of sustainable biomass feedstock for biofuels and other important commodity products such as proteins and vitamins. Proper cultivation and selection of algae could benefit the environment such as nutrient removal in tertiary wastewater treatment and carbon dioxide capture from ambient air or industrial waste gas (e.g., flue gas). Thus, algal research and algal biotechnology are critical for advancing our knowledge and promoting sustainability. This regional workshop aims to promote knowledge exchange and cooperation in the field of algal bloom mitigation, biomass production and use. The workshop provided a consortium for academic faculty, industrial practitioners and experts, federal and state agencies together in New Jersey and other regions. 

Dr. Bruce Rittmann from ASU delivered the keynote speech on Microbial Photobioenergy –
Making CO2 a Resource, Not a Liability.

Wen Zhang

Key participants/organizations:

Vincent Prieto, NJSEA President and CEO and the CEE Department Chair, Dr. Taha Marhaba gave the opening remarks. 

Dr. Yongsheng Chen from Georgia Tech made a talk on Perspectives of Sustainable Algal Biofuels for Carbon Neutrality.

Todd J. Olson(Moleaer)

John Civardi
(Mott MacDonald)

The photo below shows Dr. Zhang’s presentation talk to the participants about HAB mitigation. And Dr. Zhang’s group member, Yihan Zhang, presented a poster to highlight algae-related projects/research.

Bruce Rittmann

Bob Newby

Yongsheng Chen
(Georgia Tech)

Meiyin Wu
(Montclair State)

Workshop on algal bloom mitigation and algal biotechnology for sustainable New Jersey

Taha Marhaba
(CEE Chair)

Francisco J. Artigas (NJSEA)

Fred S. Lubnow
(Princeton Hydro)

Xuezhi Zhang (CAS)

Yang Yang
(Clarkson University)