ReNUWit’s AquaCharge Technology Earns Prestigious Innovation Award

Achievement date: 

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) awarded an innovation award to a project designed to enhance the resiliency and sustainability of urban water supplies, developed with support from the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Engineering Research Center (ERC) for Re-Inventing the Nation's Urban Water Infrastructure, or ReNUWIt, based at Stanford University.


The award recognized the utility of a computational planning tool developed by ReNUWIt researchers called AquaCharge. The software enables local authorities to compare the tradeoffs between different wastewater designs in order to find the most cost-effective system in their region.


Urban utilities typically choose between reusing stormwater or wastewater to increase water supplies. Each has its own infrastructure requirements, including extensive land use for stormwater recovery and expensive piping for wastewater. Most utilities choose one or the other. The AquaCharge technology can help more utilities to use hybrid systems that recapture both stormwater and wastewater.

AquaCharge won the Overall Best Student Innovation award at the 2017 Engineers Innovation Contest held by the ASCE. The tool also earned awards for Most Efficient in the green engineering category and Best Value in the resiliency category.