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William Ford Receives New NSF Grant

March 24, 2021

The project is titled, “RII Track-4: Elucidating Controls of Sediment Phosphorus Delivery to Tile-Drains” and will be funded in the amount of $226,757.

William Ford, assistant professor in the Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, has received a two-year grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF)’s EPSCoR Research Infrastructure program. The project is titled, “RII Track-4: Elucidating Controls of Sediment Phosphorus Delivery to Tile-Drains” and will be funded in the amount of $226,757.

The abstract is below.

“Subsurface tile-drainage is widely used to increase crop yields in poorly drained, agricultural landscapes across the nation. Sediment-bound phosphorus (P) loadings from tile-drainage are contributing to eutrophication and increasing the prominence of harmful algae in downstream waterbodies. There are major gaps in understanding of sediment erosion and transport dynamics through tile-drains, which has limited our ability to manage these contaminants from agricultural fields.  This research will provide funding for a tenure-track Assistant Professor, and a graduate research assistant from the University of Kentucky to conduct extended site visits at the National Soil Erosion Research Laboratory (NSERL) in West Lafayette, Indiana.  The PI and his student will collaborate with researchers at NSERL to perform laboratory rainfall simulations to study mechanisms of sediment erosion and transport through subsurface soils.  The research team will also enhance computer simulation tools that can capture tile sediment P loadings from fields in order to improve management strategies.  Tile-drainage is increasingly implemented in the PI’s state of Kentucky, as well as food-production systems across the country.  This research will improve infrastructure for researching and managing tile-drainage water quality, advance graduate curricula at the PI’s home institution, and providing training of an under-represented student in STEM.”

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Science Foundation under Award Number 2032701. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.