Robert Bair, PhD
Senior Development Engineer
Dr. Bair is an expert on anaerobic membrane bioreactors for decentralized wastewater treatment. His passion is seeing technological advancements serving the needs of marginalized communities in developing countries. During his PhD work he worked on the NEWgenerator and has served as designer, builder, and operator of the system. He plans to continue improving the system and wants to see the technology commercialized.
Cynthia Castro, PhD, EIT
Project Manager & Technical Lead
Dr. Castro works on developing off-grid wastewater treatment systems for low- and middle-income countries. Her research interests include nutrient recovery and management, bio-electrochemical systems, electrochemical processes, water reuse, and sustainable sanitation. Prior to joining USF, she worked on fundamental understanding of microbial fuel cells (MFC) and oxygenic photogranules for energy-efficient wastewater treatment.
Daniella Saetta, PhD
Dr. Saetta work at USF & NASA's Kennedy Space Center where she is supporting the Bioregenerative Water Purification project. She received her PhD in Environmental Engineering from Arizona State University in 2021. Her research focused on the implementation of urine diversion systems in the United States. Her research stood on a strong backbone of cyber technologies, including low-cost sensors and data-driven control. Prior to ASU, Daniella received her B.S. and M.E. degrees in Environmental Engineering at the University of Florida.
Hsiang-Yang (Gary) Shyu
Gary's research focuses on Non-sewered Sanitation Systems for nutrient recovery from wastewater. As a part of his Ph.D. research, he is analyzing field trial data from the NEWgenerator. He is currently using the data to developing dynamic models for further system optimization.
Talon specializes in resource recovery for long-duration, deep-space human exploration. He developed the Organic Processor Assembly (OPA) as part of his M.S.. Talon is currently investigating the development and application of aerobic treatment technologies in space.
Itzé (Ally) Kenny
Ally's research focuses on nutrient recovery from wastewater streams through struvite precipitation. Her master’s work focuses on the development of a high-rate recovery process. Her general goals are to remediate and prevent environmental pollution in both local and international contexts.
Alexandra joined the lab after interning at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center while working on a biological water treatment system for space applications. She is pursuing a Master of Science degree in Integrative Biology, concentrating on Environmental Microbiology and Ecology. Her current research revolves around the operation of the OPA system.
Affiliate Team Members
Fwd Designs, LLC
Control and Manufacturing Specialist
Control and Automation Specialist
Ahmet Erkan Uman, PhD
Lecturer, Istanbul Medeniyet Univ., Department of Engineering and Natural Sciences.
WASH R&D Centre, UKZN
Prototype Engineer - NEWgen System
Theodorah Tania Ncube
WASH R&D Centre, UKZN
Prototype Engineer - Direct Filtration System
Funke Adeosun, PhD
Funke focused on the development of a resilience and reliability framework for decentralized wastewater treatment technologies. Her dissertation can be found here.
Jorge Calabria, PhD, ENV SP, EI
Jorge investigated the horticultural applications for anaerobically treated wastewaters. For his PhD he designed and tested a nutrient capture system for decentralized wastewater treatment systems. His dissertation can be found here.
Ana Lucia Prieto, PhD
One of the original PhD students in the Membrane Biotechnology Lab. She worked on the first iterations of the AnMBR system as well as algal biofuels. Her dissertation can be found here.