Research - Bruce E. Logan

Research Interest 

Microbial Fuel Cells
H2 using MECs/BEAMR
H2E Center
Bacterial Adhesion
Bioremediation & Water Treatment
Trickling Filters
Molecules, Colloids & Particles
Research Projects



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Logan's main area of research interest is in the Sustainability of the Water Infrastructure. Energy demands of the water infrastructure use 5% of our electricity generation in the US. Thus, the areas of most active research in the Logan laboratory for ensuring water sustainability are in BioEnergy, or methods of producing electricity or energy carriers such as hydrogen from biomass. Specific research topics include bioelectricity using microbial fuel cells and biohydrogen production using microbial electrolysis cells (MECs or BEAMR) or by fermentation. Other main interest areas are in water treatment using biological processes to target specific chemicals such as perchlorate, and the general study of bacterial adhesion for the purposes of bioaugmentation for remediation of contaminated aquifers.  You can use the links on the left side of this page to directly connect to the specific areas of research on ongoing or past research projects. For a specific listing of currently funded projects by funding source, use the "Projects" link at the top of this page.

The BioEnergy topic includes links to our research on direct electricity production in microbial fuel cells (MFCs), on biological hydrogen production using fermentation and modified microbial fuel cell processes (BEAMR),  and a link to the H2E Center page that will provide additional links to other projects around the campus on hydrogen and fuel cells. 

Research on Bioadhesion includes research on describing bacterial transport, reducing cell adhesion by enhancing cell transport for the purposes of bioremediation by bioaugmentation, and our more recent work on a molecular-level analysis of bioadhesion.  See the CRAEMS page for a description of our recently concluded NSF-funded project in this area.

Research on Bioremediation & Water Treatment ncludes several topics.  See the Perchlorate webpage for references and links to Penn State and other web pages on perchlorate.  You can also view a Perchlorate Presentation (Powerpoint) to learn about our research on this topic.  Biochemical oxygen demand of wastewater is usually measured in batch tests.  We have developed a special, inexpensive respirometric methods for analysis of BOD as described on the HBOD page.  This page contains methods, protocols and a list of equipment needed to run the test. The Trickling Filter Homepage contains information on the design of plastic media trickling filters (TFs), which includes predicting sBOD and oxygen transport.  From this page you can download TF models.  The web show (Design of NTFs) contains information on the design of nitrifying trickling filters (NTFs). 

Colloids and Particles.  Research on particle dynamics, coagulation, and fractals, is contained on the Particles page.  The molecules page includes information relevant to determining molecular size distributions in water using ultrafiltration techniques.

Other things of interest.  The Workshop pages describes two events sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP).  The first event was a workshop was held in 1997 at the Asilomar Conference Center, Monterey, CA.  The second was a Research Frontiers Conference.


Bruce E. Logan |  Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering | 231Q Sackett Building
Phone: 814-863-7908 | Fax: 814-863-7304 
The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802