Tuesday, March 26, 2019
NMSU, consortium partners to vie for $100 million Hub to address water challenges
WRITER: Tiffany Acosta, 575-646-3929, email@example.com
CONTACT: Pei Xu, 575-646-5870, firstname.lastname@example.org
As a leader in water treatment research, the College of Engineering at New Mexico State University is a part of a team preparing a proposal for a new U.S. Department of Energy grant to create an Energy-Water Desalination Hub. The award for the Hub will be approximately $100 million, $20 million per year for five years, with a five-year renewal possibility.
As a member of the National Alliance for Water Innovation team, Civil Engineering Associate Professor Pei Xu is leading NMSU’s effort in a consortium that includes Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and National Renewable Energy Laboratory along with several universities and industry partners.
“We aim to develop cost-effective and energy efficient availability of clean water reclaimed from a variety of traditional and non-traditional sources such as brackish water, seawater, wastewater and produced water for a range of applications including municipal drinking water, agricultural uses, manufacturing and other industrial needs,” Xu said
“Results from this research and development would advance economic competitiveness, energy and water security and responsible environmental stewardship of the nation. NMSU’s participation in the Hub would benefit the state of New Mexico, which faces water scarcity and severe droughts.”
Proposals for the Hub are due in May with an announcement slated for August.
“We have a very unique expertise we can bring to the Hub,” she said. “We are developing innovative technologies for selective removal of contaminants from water, and high-efficiency, renewable energy driven desalination processes.”
In addition to research funding, Xu said the Hub would bring in significant educational opportunities for students and postdocs to develop the next generation of workforce in water treatment.
“Dr. Xu has earned widespread respect for her research in the water-energy nexus. One of her primary research areas is to develop sustainable water-energy-food-environment systems using low-cost, highly efficient and flexible treatment processes to reclaim produced water. She is an ideal person to be involved in this effort, and New Mexico is an ideal location for the Energy-Water Desalination Hub,” said Lakshmi N. Reddi, dean of the College of Engineering.
The Hub opportunity is good timing, Xu said, because it would allow NMSU to continue water treatment research with the conclusion of a National Science Foundation grant, the Engineering Research Center for Re-inventing the Nation’s Urban Water Infrastructure, in 2021. NMSU partnered with Stanford University, Colorado School of Mines and the University of California, Berkeley in 2011 to create ReNUWIt with a goal of identifying new ways to supply urban water and treat wastewater with greater efficiency, resource recovery and environmental mitigation.
After joining the NMSU faculty in 2013, the work of Xu and her research team has garnered more than $3.5 million in research support. Along with her work in municipal water reuse, brackish water desalination and concentrate treatment, Xu also examines produced water generated during oil and natural gas exploration. Xu and multiple NMSU leaders including Chancellor Dan Arvizu discussed a possible new industry collaboration with ExxonMobil representatives and Peter Fiske, the lead of the NAWI team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, in a meeting on campus in January.
“Support from industrial partners such as ExxonMobil is essential to the strength of this research. The future of water and energy is important to their business, and they will play an important role going forward with water-energy research,” Reddi said.
Xu believes a collaboration with ExxonMobil would be a mutually beneficial partnership that would allow NMSU to test its research.
“They make sure our technology isn’t just in an ivory tower, but it will be applicable to solve real-world problems,” she said.
ExxonMobil has one of the most active oil and gas operations in the region, which includes the Permian Basin in West Texas and New Mexico, with plans to triple total daily production by 2025. At the meeting at NMSU, representatives from ExxonMobil discussed its research portfolio including the lifecycle of produced water.
Xu said she is optimistic about both the Hub and collaboration with ExxonMobil and credits NMSU civil engineering faculty members such as Assistant Professor Yanyan Zhang, Associate Professor Lambis Papelis and Professor Nirmala Khandan and Tanner Schaub from the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences along with faculty members from chemical and materials engineering and mechanical and aerospace engineering for creating a strong research team.
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Tuesday, March 5, 2019
Morgan Nelson passed. His viewing at La Grone in Roswell, Wednesday March 6, 9 am to 8 pm the service will be at First Baptist Church, 500 N. Pennsylvania Ave. Roswell, NM, Thursday at 2.00 pm The obituary has not been posted yet.
Morgan lived a life that was always helping people, whether it was through agriculture, the college of ag, or just giving young folks a leg up and encouraging them. He was a good friend and a good man to have on your side. He was on the CART committee for years
He served in the US Army Air Corp, WWII, state Legislature, House of Representatives 1948-1962 and NM member to negotiate the Pecos River Compact. He worked until the very end with the Pecos Water Users Organization and water planning. I was honored to have him as a friend.
NELSON, MORGAN- Rejoice! Morgan Nelson finished his time on this earth and went to be with the Lord on March 1, 2019, at the age of 99 years and 5 months. He was born in Cottonwood, New Mexico on September 27, 1919, to Fred M and Florace Morgan Nelson. The family moved to East Grand Plains where he attended school thought eighth grade. He graduated from Roswell High School in 1937.
Nelson graduated from the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanical Arts, now New Mexico State University, in 1941 with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering.
The United States Army Air Corps needed graduate engineers. The Surge of patriotism along with some urging from Uncle Sam had Nelson joining up in July of 1941. He served five years in World War II, in the Middle East Theater and Europe. He was recalled to active duty during the Korean conflict. He finished his Air Force career with the rank of Colonel after 20 years’ service in the US Air Force Reserve.
Upon his return from World War II, Nelson took up farming with his father at their Cottonwood and East Grand Plains farms. Farming was his primary occupation for the rest of his life. His grandparents had arrived in Roswell on Christmas Eve of 1887. The East Grand Plains farm had been originally operated by his uncle starting in 1895.
In 1949, Nelson ran for the New Mexico State Legislature. He served 12 years. He specialized in state finance, serving as Chairman of the Appropriations and Finance Committee in 1957. He served as Chairman of the Bored of Educational Finance. It was created to get higher education finance out of politics. He considered his most important achievement in his legislative career to be the proposal and enactment of the law establishing a junior-college system for New Mexico. He was active in the establishing of Eastern New Mexico University- Roswell at the former walker Air Force Base.
After his legislative career, he concentrated on farming and the improvement of cotton in New Mexico. He served over 20 years on the Cotton Incorporated ( CI ) Board of Directors. He was president of the 1517 Cotton Association. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Southwestern Irrigated Cotton Growers ( SWIG ). Always interested in the improvement of cotton, he was active in the NMSU Collage of Agriculture’s actives in cotton research and promotion. He served on the Council for Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching ( CARET). He was known as “Mr. Cotton” of New Mexico and was among the first five inductees into the Cotton’s Hall of Fame in 2014.
Nelson received many awards, among them, the James F. Cole Memorial Award for Service, and an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree, both from NMSU. In 2018 the Roswell Board of Realtors named him Citizen of the Year.
He was a member of First Baptist Church of Roswell. As a Rotarian, he received the Paul Harris award. He was a member of the Roswell Masonic Lodge No. 18, and he served as the Flood Commissioner of Chaves County until the day he died.
Nelson was active in the revival of the Historical Society of Southeastern New Mexico and served as its first museum chairman. His interest in local history and his specific interest in water history led him to do extensive research and writing on both subjects. He also wrote of his World War II experiences. He served on the Board of Directors of the New Mexico Farm and Livestock heritage Museum as well.
He married Joyce LaSuer Walsh Nelson in 1950. She passed away in 2008 after 58 years of marriage. They have three daughters, Margo Eichwald, Ann Houghtaling, and Jane McLaughlin, seven grandchildren and numerous great and great-great-grandchildren.
Preceding him in death are his parents, his only sister Laurene Eastham and her husband David, nephew Robert Allen Eastham and grandson Stephen Houghtaling.
Before her passing, he and Joyce established two endowed scholarships, one with the NMSU Foundation and one with the ENMU-R Foundation. Subsequently, he established and endowed a fund with the Historical Foundation of Southeastern New Mexico.
Pallbearers will be Luke Davis, Ricardo Eichwald, Esai Goitia, Allyson Houghtaling, Bryan Mager, Marc Reischman, Don Stevenson. Honorary Pallbearers will be Fred Nolan, Ihab Shalaby, and The Thursday Afternoon Coffee Group.
A Viewing will be held Wednesday, March 6, 2019 at LaGrone Funeral Chapel from 9:00AM- 8:00PM. Services will be held at First Baptist Church at the corner of Fifth Street and Pennsylvania Avenue at 2:00PM Thursday, March 7, 2019. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to one of his educational foundations. Morgan and Joyce Nelson Endowed Scholarship NMSU Foundation P.O. Box 3590 Las Cruces NM 88003-3590 payable to NMSU Foundation, Or ENMU-Roswell Foundation P.O. BOX 6000 Roswell NM 88202-6000.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at www.lagronefuneralchapels.com